Founder and Editorial Director Kristi L. Jackson Co-Editor Deana Marshall Research Editor Salman Yousaf Creative Director Damir Hrnjicic
Contributors Kristi L. Jackson Dede Newby Tenecia Brown Deana Marshall Remi Roy Marcy Twete AnneMarie Cross
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The Business Woman ManifestoYOU ARE MEANT TO BE HERE. YOU
ARE ENOUGH. YOU ARE CAPABLE. YOU ARE AN UBER MULTI-TASKER. YOU DETERMINE YOUR PATH TO SUCCESS. YOUR SIZE MAKES YOU NIMBLE. YOUR OBSTACLES MADE YOU WISER. YOUR FAILURES MADE YOU ADAPTABLE. YOUR STRENGTH IS YOUR STORY. YOU ARE NOT YOUR MISTAKES BECAUSE YOUR PAST IS SMOKE AND SUCCESS IS YOUR FUTURE. INTUITION IS A SKILL AND A GIFT FROM GOD. WE BECOME STRONGER WHEN WE LINK TOGETHER. YOU KNOW YOUR WORTH, AND DON’T NEED ANYONE TO COMPUTE IT FOR YOU.THE NO’S YOU GOT YESTERDAY ARE THE DOORS YOU WALK THROUGH TODAY. YOU ARE ALREADY ENOUGH. YOU ARE POWERFUL. YOU SPEAK POWER WORDS. YOU TAKE POWER ACTIONS. YOU’RE SCRAPPY, HAVE MASSIVE HUSTLE AND YOU’RE ONLY COMING HOME WITH A FUTURE IN YOUR POCKET.
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Kristi Kristi. What can I say, FANTASTIC. This issue is just for me. All the motivation, info, tips, resources that I need to kickstart and finish my ebook for my upcoming launch. This one is quite loaded. Have to read it like I read Aunty O's, (Oprah) magazine, after kids are in bed. Yes, Nigerians claim everyone...including YOU. Really pretty cover!
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01 09 20
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Cover Story 24 Convert, Attract & Transform Shama Kabani
Regular 12 16 18 46
4 books that made a difference A Brand With Style Queen of Content Conquer Your Digital Marketing Strategy NOW! 48 Harness The Power of Marketing Through StoryTelling 52 Branding vs. Marketing 56 The Ultimate Marketing, PR & Social Media Holy Grail 60 Determining Your Media Mix 64 Girl Crush 68 Branding Done Right
Erika Napolentano Real Breeds Real Crystal Washington-Martin Vision. Powerful Purpose. International Success Andrea Shillington, Brand for the People
articles The Business Woman Manifesto 03 Opinionated 04 Calendar 05 Founderâ€™s Note 08
used to think my limitations could only be unlocked when I became worthy. That there was some status, some position that I’d one day attain, when I had developed enough skills, the right contacts, the proper look, confidence, and had gotten permission. I put many of my ideas, my thoughts, my dreams on hold, but articulated them neatly in a journal of things I wrote but never thought I’d actually attempt and tucked them neatly in my drawer. I made sure to never add dates or names, and wrote in crypted code because even in my private moments, my most intimate thoughts, in my being, I didn’t want to be exposed as a failure or reminded of what I didn’t achieve. I didn’t cry for years, like 10. I thought this made me strong. I hid behind a proper, perfect mask. I hid everything I actually wanted. Coloring well within the lines, I keep my dreams, my goals quiet, attainable, non-ambitious, comfortable to my friends, my family, to myself. I never expanded, walked on the edge or even looked at the edge.
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I needed to make my family, my mother proud of me now, not later. My 2008 was difficult. I have never experienced such a tragedy and a blessing within the same lesson. I am so appreciative of the clearance of trees, the sense of clarity, the recognition of urgency, and finding the why to my purpose. I have to remind myself as I write this, that it’s ok to cry. It’s ok to admit that in the past, you gave more credit to your excuses than credence to your opportunities. It’s ok to recognize your lack of effort especially if it’s a precursor to your abundance of tenacity, your feelings of limitless possibilities and your uncontainable happiness and appreciation of life, of family and in discovery and acceptance of your talents.
My world changed in April 2008. It’s almost an anniversary. I can’t say what, but I can say For the last 3 years, I have been living my how, my life, my desire, my ambition changed journal, entry by entry, not without fear, but with metaphorically. an absence of excuses. With my mother looking on, hoping that she understands my deepest My family has always been the center of my desire is to make her proud of me, but knowing world, and at a moment, I was faced with the that even if she is not, hoping that she respects reality of possibly losing my most loved, most and somehow admires that even though I’m not trusted, consistent, cherished, confident, friend, using my degrees, not doing the job she expected my deepest love. or giving her beautiful grandchildren, that I’ve finally found my passion and want to help, My “Right now”, my future was staring me directly educate, and encourage women in the world, for in the face. Life was as fragile as a feather and the rest of my life. could be blown away in seconds. Why exactly had I been holding back? Why wasn’t I living My only hope is that in opening up to you ladies, my future now? Who exactly was I awaiting that in sharing one of my deepest most intimate permission from? Whose approval did I need? lessons, my urgency, my “why”, that I encourage and inspire you to pause, to unlock your own I had all of the tools, the resources, the knowledge chains, to deeply reflect and start living your needed. What I was waiting on was “a go”. I passions now. thought I needed someone to say it was ok. What I really needed was to be presented with the lack Ladies, if you were waiting for the right time, of time to realize that it was imperative to make waiting for a sign, if you needed someone to tell important use of my valuable present. you this......I finally found my “go” , now I give it to you. I didn’t need to be given an opportunity, a committee, applause, permission or to be given With Great Expectations, a platform. Kristi I needed to create my own platform. My opportunities rested in the palm of my hand. All that was required was giving myself permission to say yes to the passions and the purpose that had been burning and residing deep within my belly.
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Contributors Kristi Jackson
Kristi is a White House Recognized Innovator & Entrepreneur, an Award Winning Humanitarian, Founder of Women CEO Project www.womenceoproject.com, which was Voted Womenâ€™s Organization of Year, 2013 and Founder & Publisher of Power Culture Magazine www.powerculturemag.com Follow her @womenceo and @powerculturemag
Tenecia Brown is a writer that has a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Relations from The University of Texas at Austin. Sheâ€™s passionate about language and the art of writing and specializes in storytelling and creative writing. She can be found on Twitter here.
Deana is a mother, Internet SEO Content Marketer, Freelance Writer, Bacon Extraordinaire, and the owner of ArticleWriteUp.com. When she is not managing her team of writers and working with clients to meet their SEO content needs, she is experimenting with various bacon recipes, baking breads, or doing yard work. You can catch Deana on Twitter & FB @articlewriteup
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Remi is a writer, managing editor, blogger and aspiring author. Sheâ€™s written for the Naija Stories, From the Sidelines, Gem Woman Magazine, Exceed Magazine, Lagos Moms, Femmelounge.com and many more. Follow Remi @Remi_Roy
Marcy Twete is the Founder and CEO of Career Girl Network, whose mission is to provide for women clear paths to career success and a large network of women to nurture, mentor, and support their goals. Marcy is a native of rural North Dakota. She now makes her home in the Chicago Loop with her husband Charlie. You can follow Marcy here
Dede Newby is a freelance writer and songwriter. Her articles have been featured in Curve, Swerv, Qnotes and many other online outlets Catch Deed @deaidrenewby or www.linkedin.com/in/deaidrenewby
Coach AnneMarie Cross is a Business and Branding Strategist for Women Entrepreneurs , who helps them get hired and paid what theyâ€™re worth. She can be found doling out content rich information on her blog or Twitter. Follow her here
Books that Made a Difference to Me
This issue’s reads will get you ENERGIZED. They are four of my favorite books that teach you how to take your business global, automate and delegate your daily tasks, startup lean and test your market before breaking the bank, and how to gain the confidence to compete-even with the big boys. This is the group of books to get you going for 2013 and beyond.
“The UltraLight Startup” by Jason Baptiste This book reads like another version of the Lean Startup. It helps you to fully understand what it takes to submit a minimum viable product to your audience to test your theories and product before outlaying tons of money. After reading it- we did the exact same thing in our new Women CEO Project website here.
“4 Hour Work Week” by Tim Ferriss
Oldie but goodie. This book will get you to thinking about how you can live the life of your dreams, automate most of your tasks and how to build a company to pay for it.
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“Crush It” by Gary Vaynerchuk This is a fast, exciting read. Feels like you’re on a roller coster and all you want to do is jump up and get started. He makes you feel beyond competent yet reminds you that starting a business and gaining the traffic and clients that you want and need won’t be easy.
“Killing Giants” by Stephen Denny Awesome book we’re reading now that teaches you how to focus on your core beliefs, create a community around your company and go up against the big guys no matter how established they are.
Knowledge from across the web: Priceless! Good for everyone, from Genx to Millennials.
Feedback Ashley Spiller says:
I brought the Think big Start Smart guide and because of it I have a million webpages opened!! I have learned so much from this very informative and might I add well put together guide. Thank you for putting together great content that continues to help grow my business.
James says: May I say how fortunate I was to be in the right place at the right time to purchase this eGuide. Although I have had to do some other work today, that has paled into insignificance by the time I have spent both enjoying reading through your guide, which is entertaining as well as exceedingly well laid out. As I am in the process of starting up I have been searching for the appropriate online tools, I have already replaced some of those I had already chosen as the ones I picked from your lists are better (and I haven't exhausted your lists yet). I have also found gems which, as I say despite me searching for that type, I didn't even know existed! I am certain that any start-up business would do well to use your eGuide as a standard toolbox of the online tools they choose from to operate their business. If I meet anyone starting any business I would feel confident in strongly suggesting that they consult your guide before and as they sort out their online requirements.
Jabrecia Lightfoot: Okay I have read the eguide and I'm already in the process of building my free website from wix and also will be using the JustIn Tv!! And there is a lot more that I will be using as well. This is a very easy guide to bring your company to life. Its really dummy proof.
Lewis Williams says:
hat manual is the shit! Don't think you're charging enough for it though :)
Daniel Patterson -Winningham says: As a Fortune 100 Executive, having recently branched out to start my own Coaching/Speaking/ Training business I can attest to the HUGE value found in the Think BIG Start Small Guide. This guide is FULL of not only the cutting edge technology every small business needs to keep up, but also many of these services are free or cheap. You will find that the minimal amount spent on this guide will be quickly recouped by the savings found on the sites mentioned in this book. It is worth it's weight in goal for NEW and Experienced entrepreneurs.
Style By: Marcy Twete
You wake up, wander towards a dark closet and somewhere between asleep and awake, you choose your outfit for the day. In your tired state, you do your best to look professional and appropriate, but at any time during this daily closet pull, do you think about your style? Do you think about your brand? Most women are just trying to get out the door in time, and the pre-dawn hour is rarely the time to contemplate your personal brand. However, your style contributes heavily to the brand you present to your coworkers, friends, potential clients, leaders, and everyone in between. Itâ€™s what can differentiate you from your peers and competitors, add to your poise, and ultimately build your personal brand.
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Fortunately, finding your personal style isn’t an expensive or difficult process. You can certainly choose to hire a professional stylist – someone who will scrutinize your closet, create outfits, and help you shop for staples you might be missing. If you have the budget, a stylist can take the guesswork out of your brand style, but if you’re not ready to take that leap, you can brand your own personal style with the help of Google and your instincts.
Start by finding inspiration. Are there celebrities or prominent women whose style you admire? Perhaps there is a film or television show whose characters’ wardrobes appeal to you. Which retail stores are you attracted to?. Spend some time online searching for and digitally saving photos of these individuals, scenes, and outfits.
Match your inspiration with your intention. Go through those photos you saved, and start to put them together with the words they match. I recommend taking time to paste the photos and words into a PowerPoint presentation to give you a visual representation.
Second, set your style branding intention. What would you hope someone would say about your brand style? Choose three or four words as your intentions. Think of words like smart, savvy, confident, sassy, approachable, etc.
tart your list, and go S shopping. Make a list of pieces you might need to add to your wardrobe to make it shine like the words and photos you’ve chosen. Shop first in your own closet (you own much more than you think you do) and then in stores with a specific budget in mind.
The first key to success is changing your mindset to pair your style with your brand. How do they go hand in hand and complement one another? The second key to success is to take your time. You can’t compile a stylish and brand friendly wardrobe in days or weeks. Choose pieces carefully and over time, and whenever you shop, ask yourself, “Will I feel like the embodiment of my brand in this piece?” Hopefully this process will begin to make that morning closet routine more strategic and less haphazard. Soon, your brand will change in the same ways!
I love swapping juicy information. I am a repost, retweet queen. But the most valuable thing I could do to dramatically increase my business, grow my speaking portfolio and brand myself as an influential thought leader was to create and share my own content. By: Kristi L. Jackson
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We all have something to say and we are no doubt eternal students of our craft - always improving, learning and growing, but there should come a time in our careers where we’re not only perpetual students, but that we actually become the teacher. “To teach is to learn.” Japanese Proverb
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ontent is queen and we know this from just taking a glimpse at the marketing landscape of today. If your work is not being promoted, quoted, or shared, you simply aren’t trying. With all of the platforms available to us to not only share our own content but to continuously make it better, we have an awesome chance of branding ourselves, gaining attention, leading customers to our digital homes, and ultimately making the sale. First: Don’t wait to be promoted, demoted, awarded, or granted the title of expert. Grant yourself “expert enough” status and let’s get started. Start reading specific industry related books and articles often, consuming at minimum 2 books a month. It is said that reading at least 24 books on an industry will make you an expert on that subject. This keeps your mind fresh, keeps you on top of current trends and presents you with quality information on which to make your own projections, form your thoughts and opinions and speak intelligently in your professional space.
“To be a thought leader, you must have thoughts.” Kristi After all that research, determine what “your” core thoughts and beliefs are. To brand yourself, they can’t be exactly like someone else’s. Add your unique opinion and spin to it- craft a consistent and genuine message, then start creating content that centers around that. Start creating. It’s too simple and cheap now to create digital and even print products that promote your knowledge reaching local and global audiences. While it’s simple, it’s not easy-it requires work, research and time, but it’s well worth the potential marketing, branding and possible financial benefits that content creation brings.
What to Create: Blog Posts
(22 Tips to Creating Compelling Blog Posts)
Case Studies (Create a Killer Case Study)
(post on Slideshare)
(Youtube- Video Marketing Tips)
(share on issuu)
(send to Ezine and About)
This is my term, but are basically short recordings of you dropping tips, tools, advice and words of encouragement on your audience. Try audioboo.
Get help where you need to. One of the BEST places to go for help in writing your content, making it compelling, and leveraging it is CopyBlogger. Also, why not ask your audience what they want and need, then crafting a tool for them? This has proven to be very effective in getting your audience involved, sourcing their needs, then satisfying them while also branding yourself as a trusted resource. Win-win.
Crafting your own writings, publications and resources sprinkled with keywords, products and services, your social media links and contact information can be a fruitful part of your marketing strategy as this will lead the Google crawlers and potential customers back to your website.
In 2013, you can’t even google the word marketing without pulling up hundreds of articles on content, hot content, content creation...... basically, it’s not going anywhere, and why should it? To help your audience filter through the clutter and find the best person to solve their problem-you, why not make it easier for them by consistently learning, creating, and crafting tools for them that mixes your unique voice, original thoughts and solidify your content queen status.
As long as you're steadily improving, who cares where you started from.? Get rid of people who need to remind you that you came from the dirt. Youâ€™re clean now... by Kristi L. Jackson
The Power Circle These are 4 of the TOP leading authorities in the Social Media, Marketing and Branding arenas. They are international speakers, writers, sought after consultants and successful business owners. Power Culture Magazine got just a brief minute to spend with each of them and find out whatâ€™s hot, useful and are best practices in Marketing for 2013.
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By: Deana Marshall
I had the rare opportunity and great honor to get an interview with the highly sought after Shama Kabani. Shama is the Award winning CEO of The Marketing Zen Group and was designated as the “master millennial of the universe” and “an online marketing shaman” by FastCompany.com. Read on to meet this powerful woman, learn how her success started and insights to her journey.
A Must Read: ‘The Zen of Social Media Marketing’ Kristi: You are such a successful business owner, sought after speaker and thought leader in the social media arena. For those who haven’t met you, tell us, who is Shama Kabani? Shama: As a professional, I wear many hats: CEO, entrepreneur, multimedia journalist, bestselling author, TV personality, and speaker. On a personal level, I am married and very close to my family. I prefer a good book to a late night out on the town. I have a zest for learning new things, and I believe that makes me a student for life. Kristi: What made you start a business after leaving college instead of going into corporate? Shama: Well, for starters the industry I wanted to go into didn’t really exist in the corporate world. Over 18 major consulting companies told me they didn’t understand why their clients would ever need to engage with social media. At that point, I was seeing something which they weren’t – yet. Rather than give up my passion, I pursued it. Today, social media is an integral part of business and life. And, my company has grown into a full scale web marketing and digital PR firm with a team of 30, serving clients around the world. It has been an intensely gratifying journey.
Kristi: What is the biggest thing or who do you contribute to your success? Shama: My parents who instilled in me a lifelong love of learning. I
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only wish that I am able to do the same for my kids! My teachers, who always seemed to see something in me that I didn’t see in myself, and my husband who believed and encouraged me to dream bigger. Kristi: Back to those high-level speaking engagements- what advice would you give to a startup wanting to gain speaking engagements using social media? Shama: First, you have to have a message that resonates with people. Choose topics which you get asked about most often and create a talk around that. Second, add as much value as possible when you do get the opportunity to speak. I often survey the audience beforehand to make sure the talk covers exactly what they need, and will often follow-up with even more value for the attendees in the form of white papers, articles, etc. Third, use social media to increase visibility for your brand in a way which adds value to everyone. I’ll often share nuggets from my speaking engagements across platforms. Kristi: So many entrepreneurs think that if they slap their name and website up on a social media platform that it will automatically bring in customers. You mention this in the book on what people want “it” to do. Could you tell us what a business, new to social media, can expect to happen within 1 year of joining a platform AND what an example simple day to day social media plan could/should look like using say Facebook, Twitter and Youtube? Shama: A good social media campaign is a combination of strategy, consistency, and patience. When any of these ingredients are missing, the campaign will fall short. We always recommend that businesses put their business goals first and then see if and how social media can help. Don’t setup a page or a Twitter account just because that’s what you feel you must do. The medium is not a substitute for the message. Companies who do well on social media have a very clear sense of their audience and how they can create value for their audience. Kristi: Your book dives right into the good stuff- but for someone who hasn’t read your bestselling book ‘The Zen of Social Media Marketing’, can you explain “The ACT Methodology” and how a startup should apply it? Shama: The ACT methodology is essentially how online marketing works in a nutshell. It stands for Attract, Convert, and Transform. You attract
Provide EXTREME Value
ways to collect email addresses. Just make sure the giveaway is something your audience would want enough to give out their email address to you. Once you have it, respect it! Don’t ever sell or share your list. And, always honor that trust. Kristi: With all of the traffic on social media and everyone claiming to be an “expert” how would you suggest an entrepreneur make themselves and their business stand out?
attention for your business, ideally convert someone to a customer or a client, and then transform your past successes into opportunity magnets which in turn attract more visibility for your business. While social media is a great tool to attract and transform, it isn’t an ideal tool for conversion. At least not a direct conversion where someone buys immediately but it is good for attracting attention, turning people into consumers (essentially, they agree to learn more – either via email marketing, subscribing to your blog, agreeing to getting your updates on Facebook, etc.) and for transforming your past and current successes into more opportunities. Social media is a story telling platform and businesses that learn how to use it correctly and as part of their bigger system, succeed. Kristi: We know that even with all of the social media platforms out there, email marketing is still one of the strongest ways to build a business. But if you’re starting out and have no database, what tips do you suggest to a get one started? Shama: Email marketing is indeed one of the strongest marketing strategies out there, but it is also much more challenging than it was five years ago; simply because people have email fatigue. Just think back to the last time you thought “I wish I got more email.” The answer is probably never. In order to get access into people’s inboxes, you have to provide EXTREME value. It isn’t good enough to create a mediocre newsletter. You have to create a great one. Giveaways are still one of the best
Shama: I believe the cream does rise to the top. You need to make sure that you are providing value for your audience. Don’t worry so much about everyone else out there. Focus on what you can bring to the table, and then stay consistent with how your serve your audience. Kristi: Where do you see social media going in the next few years? How can an entrepreneur get prepared? Shama: I believe we will continue to see a rise in content curation and aggregation. Think more sites like Pinterest. For the longest time in our history, access to information was power. It was the domain of the rich and the powerful. Today, information has been democratized. The power belongs to people who can intelligently filter and provide context for the information. Kristi: In closing Shama, what 3 pieces of advice would you offer an entrepreneur starting out today?
1 2 3
Shama: Don’t get too attached to your first idea. It is rarely your best; be willing to adapt based on what your audience tells you.
Don’t start something just for the money. Look to serve and add value – the money will follow. Invest in what matters, bootstrap the rest. You don’t need a fancy office but you do need to find the best talent. Invest in what matters to your business and to your customers.
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Real Breeds Real By: Kristi L. Jackson
Unapologetically blunt and lyrically clear, this lady knows how to excite a room. I’ve left her not once but twice amongst an audience loudly roaring “Fuck Yeah.” For first time listeners of her speeches, they seem surprised of the release, the feelings they get of weight being lifted and the energy restored to the room from the always accepting, encouraging environment she creates. If nothing, this woman is real.
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Her entire brand, her business, is built around helping her clients efficiently find their own “Fuck Yeah.” Meet Erika Napolentano. I’ve been dying to get one on one with Erika knowing I’d leave her feeling stronger and empowered, but also understanding that there was a lot of business acumen and expert knowledge behind this fiery personality. She can be seen speaking to large audiences at some of the top conferences in the world including Entrepreneur Magazine's Growth Conference and her own monumental TED talk in 2012.
“People don’t want gimmicks. People want you. Be you, because everyone else is taken.”
But who is this lady? Erika is a woman who aims to reach a new level in life and business daily and who helps her clients do the same. She wants them to not look back with regret, but to look forward with tools and techniques to make their business’ future brighter, profitable and most importantly, real. She only surrounds herself with people who challenge her to do better, not try to change who she is at her core. She is growing her community one loyal evangelist at a time. Her entire brand, her business, is built around helping her clients efficiently find their own “Fuck Yeah” or in essence, discover their authentic voice and beliefs, being able to stand on them, and create a platform and tribe around their message.
How to Get Unstuck For entrepreneurs who are getting stuck and overwhelmed with trying to stand out as an expert amongst all of the noise in the digital space she suggests, “Be yourself. Figure out who you don’t want in your world and stop trying to please those people. Your endeavor every day should be to honor the audience who will love you for everything you are and everything you’re not. Don’t get feedback from people who will never buy what you have to sell and who don’t get you. Building a brand is not about converting people- it’s about creating things that attract the people who already want to be in your world. Think, what am I willing to walk away from in order to build a brand that’s honest and true to who I am?” A good book to read on this is ‘Killing Giants’ by Stephen Denny.
Her Tips for Women Entrepreneurs
Stop identifying yourself as a female entrepreneur because great ideas can come from any gender, nationality and any set of reproductive parts. Women are doing themselves a disservice by segregatingor only associating with other female entrepreneurs. Make sure you’re not limiting your world to possibilities. You are good enough. Repeat. You are good enough! There is no one out there who can’t tell you that you aren’t as bright, savvy and as smart as you want to be. We are all a work in progress, we make mistakes, but you are good enough- now.
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Understand the value of asking for help. It’s one of the most powerful things you can do and is not a sign of weakness. When you put a request out to the universe it’s amazing what and who will come to help. Be the change you want to see in the world. Be strong enough to ask for help.
Give more than you ask for. Ask, “How can I help you? Not what you can do for me.” That has paid off for my business a lot.
Real Breeds Real Tips on Becoming a Sought After Speaker
I reminded Erika of how great I felt leaving her talks, but that my own roar got quieter and quieter as the days went on. When asked if she started off with such confidence and realization of self, this is what she had to say, “I didn’t start off like that. The thing that made me embrace it was to realize that I was good enough. That validation had to come from me. I had to surround myself with better people. I had people in my life who were picking me apart- I had to get rid of them. I’d rather have people around who challenge me to improve every day, not tell me to change. We have to grant ourselves permission to be great.” “They day I did my TED talk was transcendental - when you see 2000 people stand on their feet for something you allowed them to feel, helped them to feel, just from showing them the real you, and making them feel they could be the real them... it was the greatest gift I have received in life. People want to feel your vulnerability. It reminds them that they are human. Real breeds real.”
“People want to feel your vulnerability. It reminds them that they are human.“
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Now, as a sought after speaker with high profile engagements under her belt, it’s hard for a new entrepreneur to see where they fit, or how to start their own portfolio. When asked what tips she’d give a novice speaker on gaining lucrative and visible engagements she shared, “Get out there and start speaking in your local community and build your way up. There are tons of organizations like Ignite, Chambers of Commerce, etc. Be creative. Start with 15 minute talks, go up to 30 minutes. Start with a message that you are 100 percent confident in and that comes from a vulnerable place. Show your audience, ‘if you do these things, this is how your life will change’. You want to make people feel something, because you can never make people do anything. You’re vulnerability reminds them of their vulnerability. Doesn’t matter the industry, people want to see how you are inarguably human. All those stories, you thought no one wanted to hear, they do want to hear. No one has had it easy. Tell people how you overcame.” “Also, the minute someone asks if you have a speaking fee, the answer is ‘yes’. Sit with paid speakers and ask them for tips, pay for an hour of their time and ask them what resources you should look for, what things you should do for your business. Speaking is a business. I’m a professional but I’m also like a standup comic. I’m still looking for that middle ground- the through line.” Erika’s branding message resonates with us all. It speaks to anyone who’s struggled with not only being who they are, but unearthing your tribe who want nothing more than to work with, support, and follow you. We ended our chat with Erika enlightened and intrigued, and just a little bit more comfortable with who we are and what we stand for, but not before asking if she had only a minute to talk to a new entrepreneur and give them one piece of advice, for which she answered, “People don’t want gimmicks. People want you. Be you, because everyone else is taken.”
Turn UP & StartUP April 20th e Liv al Virtu
What Will You Learn @ StartUP Marathon13? The Legal Side of Your Startup
Action Focused Marketing Planning
• How to BEST Structure Your Company to Save you Money & Cover Your Azz eg. LLC, SCorp, CCorp • What to do BEFORE You Land in Partnership Hell • How to Protect Yourself Against Bad Contractors • When and How to use Non-Disclosures & Non-Compete Agreements
• How to Leverage Social Media Platforms to Gain Visitors to your Store, Blog or Show up @ Your Events • What to do with a Facebook Page After You Create it to Bring in Warm Leads & Sell Products • How to Build a Successful Customer Flow Stream through Internet Marketing
The Money • How to Create a Bulletproof Budget so You Can Plan Long-term & Keep Your Biz Afloat • How to Know if You’re Making or Losing Money and How to Stop It NOW! • How to Recognize Your Worth & Charge According • How to Generate Consistent Cash Flow for Your Biz
Digital Leverage Creation • How to Connect with Key Players Using FREE Tools • How to Present, Promote and Brand Yourself as an Expert in YOUR Industry • How to create social proof Quickly and Uniquely using hot digital tools • How to Set up Systems, Hire Help & Automate for Ultimate Leverage
PLUS 3 Bonuses for Virtual Attendees • Get the Ultimate Idea Jogger and Reference Package ( Value $399 - $0) • Get Think BIG. Startup Small eGuide ( Value $299 - $0) • Get Present, Promote and Sell Yourself As an Expert eGuide ( Value $299 - $0)
Your StartUP Marathon Team
Kristi L. Jackson
Thais & Saeed Tellawi
Grab your seat now!
Brands for the
People By: Deana Marshall
he’s worked for Fortune 500’s building international brands, enjoyed million dollar budgets, high-rise condos with a view and generous clothing allowances. That was then.... Andrea is a phenomenal Branding, Marketing and Social Media expert who now connects and creates more modest branding strategies through her unique company, Brands for the People. Power Culture Magazine had just a moment to pick her brain on how we could create our own unique brand. Kristi: I want to start off telling you that I really like how clean your brand and marketing is. I really like the flow - everything matched, it’s very inviting and professional. It must have cost a fortune! Andrea: Didn’t cost me as much as you think. It doesn’t have to cost a ton to have a great looking site; you just have to make sure you’re matched up with the right designers to get the work done. In fact, it’s what I’m passionate about. I love connecting small businesses with designers to match their needs so they too can look like Apple and other major brands. Kristi: Well yours looks amazing! Andrea, for someone who hasn’t had the opportunity to work with you or read your content rich
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blog- tell us, who is Andrea Shillington? Andrea: Um, well I’m an entrepreneur; a bit of a brand nerd. I’ve made a lot of mistakes with online marketing and have accumulated many skills in the process. But my background is in branding. I have lived and worked globally for big corporate companies. I was living in the Middle East in Dubai for 5 and ½ years and then I lived in London for an amount of time so my background is helping big corporate businesses, rebrand and start up new brands. I got about 8 years’ experience doing that and then I came back to Canada and I started meeting a lot of entrepreneurs. The common theme that kept rising was that none of them could afford to hire designers to create a
brand for them – the way these big corporations and companies would. This is what gave me the idea that there has got to be a better way; which is why Brands For the People was born – out of the problem I saw on the market and the need for a solution. Small businesses could afford to get a logo. They could afford to hire a freelance designer but they couldn’t afford to go through a branding process. I thought that was a problem that our industry had created and it was something I was very committed to figuring out how to solve. Kristi: What are the most crucial things you’ve done to grow your business? Andrea: When I first launched my business I got global exposure literally overnight. It was
kind of insane actually. And you know, naively I had some really basic SEO – I had a free offer, I had my website, which looks beautiful and I had a really good brand. I started off the process by creating a clear brand strategy. So when I launched my business I knew what my purpose was besides making money. I knew what my vision was. I knew exactly what I wanted to achieve in the next 10 years. I knew what my values were. I knew exactly what audience I wanted to attract, and I had a great name, promise and proposition. I reflected that in the way my brand looked. I didn’t spend a single cent on advertising or PR, and I was literally written up by Entrepreneur. com, SpringWise.com and a bunch of other publications that I never thought I would get into. It really just started off with me being clear about those 5 things I mention on my website. The one thing I would recommend people do is to have a solid brand strategy because that then feeds into how you look; it feeds into the stuff you say when you go to market from the blog posts you write to the tweets you send out – it feeds into absolutely everything. When I was at the very beginning of creating this company I wrote a 30 page business plan and I spent many 1am. nights writing out that plan and the second I pressed save on that document-it was obsolete. Things had already changed. Yet, my brand strategy has never changed to this date. Kristi: What do you feel you have sacrificed to get to where you are now?
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Andrea: Well, I’ve sacrificed my body! I used to workout like 2 times a day and now I struggle; I don’t know, this may really sound bizarre because I know in my head it’s completely ridiculous but I definitely struggle with taking good care of myself. It was something I definite
I used to; instead we are meeting through Skype – not in person. In terms of some of the things that are different I guess that I was just used to being part of a big brick and mortar office. So I would say yeah, it is probably a little bit lonelier than I expected. But then that’s why I think women’s groups are so great. I am part of a mastermind group and I have a really amazing support system around me which I intentionally built and that’s really important for me not to feel as lonely. Kristi: What are the TOP 3 things a Startup can do to brand herself and her business in 2013? Andrea:
ly struggled with in the first 6 months after I launched my business but from there I smartened up because you can only do that for so long then your whole life begins to be affected. A big part of staying on track is just having rituals in your life. The schedule I have created for myself consists of working only on my business in the morning. I don’t take any outside calls and focus on my business products solely – looking out for the bottom line. And I find that by kind of chunking up my day and having accountability people – you know, those you can say to – ‘can you please make sure I am having fun in my
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life’, ‘can you please make sure that I am going to the gym’. So I have some friends that I have made my accountability partners – things that I need balance in my life with I have made quite vocal and they hold me accountable. That seems to really help. Kristi: What do you think about running a business is different than when you went into it? Andrea: I guess I would say it’s lonely. A lot of my clients are not here in Vancouver. More like they are all around the world so because I’m doing it at an affordable rate it’s not like we are getting on a plane to go visit clients like
1. You need to have a purpose besides just making money. Our business has a huge opportunity to make an impact in the world. Each one of us has a unique purpose to fulfill on earth and as an entrepreneur it’s important to tap into that and find what you can contribute that will make an impact. Communicating that ‘why’ behind why your business exists is essential. Seventy percent (70%) of people do not care if a brand disappears. In order to connect a customer to your brand you have to have a deeper reason than just making money. 2. Knowing where you want your business to go in the next 5 to 10 years from now. Because if you’re going to create a brand the next biggest mistake I see entrepreneurs making is that they just think about the now – or the next 6 months to a year. If you want to develop a brand that has the potential to become famous then you need to at least explore where you want your business to be in 5 to 10 years from now specifically. 3. Knowing exactly who you want your customer to be. This may
seem to be a counterproductive move because as small businesses we want to be everything to everyone. We’re starving for work and we don’t want to turn anyone down. But actually in doing that (servicing everyone) we just end up looking like the competition; we just end up sort of fading away instead of completely standing out. But if you have a really clear brand – and have a clear positioning strategy, it can help you charge more than you would normally be able to because you are positioning yourself as an expert or serving a particular niche audience that has never been served before. Kristi: I can’t count how many designer horror stories I’ve heard, and I have a few of my own. You
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In order to connect a customer to your brand you have to have a deeper reason than just making money. work with designers on a regular basis, how would you suggest a novice decide on a designer to create her audience’s first impression of her business? Andrea: I think part of the reason there have been so many horror stories is because of how small business go about accessing designers. Which is, you usually have two options: 1. You are going directly to the freelance designer or 2. You are launching something on ODesk or a logo competition site. And if you’re launching something on one of these sites you’re not going to be attracting the kind of design skills that your business needs in order to look like a professional North American or Western company because typically you are going to be working with someone who is in the Philippines or India and might not have as strong of an understanding of the design aesthetic here in the US. Typically, good designers that have gone to design school and have higher qualifications do not participate in those types of platforms. If you’re a good designer you’re not going to compete for a poster or a social media background against 100 other
options. As a quality designer, that’s not attractive to them and a step down. It is also missing a key aspect. The designers are not really clear about the customers’ needs or wants. You need to work with designers that will force you to dig deeper into what you are looking for – the feel – tone- what you are trying to convey – what it is you want your customers to know just by a mere glimpse of your site. That is what’s going to allow you to attract the customers you love. If you have a generic niche, you will have a generic design. The clearer you are the more powerful your branding will be. Kristi: Do you have any Parting Advice? Andrea: Just that this all starts with your brand strategy and it starts on getting clear with your 5 basic things – your purpose, your vision, your values, your positioning, and your promise. And I think that a lot of people end up sort of skipping over that. For startups, when you are building your brand you have to have a general idea of where you are headed. So you build your brand today and grow into it. And then being really clear on your purpose is the thing that makes clients either be loyal to you or run.
Vision. Powerful Purpose. International Success 40 POWERCULTURE APR2013
Crystal started in the corporate world as a marketing manager in hospitality making sales goals. She was a rock star - consistently exceeding goals by over 100%! She knew she found her true talent and knew what it took to market. She had the natural inborn ability to even get the most difficult clients to sign on with a campaign. Yet, the corporate world was a dysfunctional environment and one she did not enjoy – even though her passion for marketing was strong. Through prayer and soul searching, it hit her that she could really do this for small businesses – the exact same thing she was doing for corporate just without the dysfunction. The seed was planted and now the implementing phase had to begin.
“When you’re on purpose, you will have a peace that I can’t explain; if you’re focusing on what you’re supposed to.... Money always showed up. I was always able to pay my bills.”
place with nowhere to go. Instead of getting into the rut many do when leaving a job, Crystal took that opportunity to educate herself even more. She went to the library, checked out 20 Initially the thought of books and read 3 every day. going out on her own was overwhelming as There were things that Crysit would be a major un- tal just knew were her strong dertaking. Depressed, points and she embraced sitting in her car she had them. Speaking in front of a vision. She could see large groups was one of her future clearly. Her vi- them and an avenue that sion was HUGE – so huge would eventually lead to her she even tried negotiating extreme success. Crystal’s with it in her mind. The vi- speaking engagements she sion was bigger than her currently does around the and the driving force that world are just a natural exsteered her straight to tension of what she was alregistering her company. ready doing. Social Media is about being social – being After registering her out in the front and speakbusiness, Crystal felt odd ing your mind, sharing, innot being in the corpo- forming, and educating. rate world. Everything was designated in her In the beginning Crystal day. She had an of- didn’t charge when she fice to go to – rou- would go speak at various tine. Now she sat venues. From her speaking, feeling out of she usually signed up many
of the attendees for her personal coaching, marketing, branding and social media consultations. When you put yourself out in the universe, the universe acts on your gifts and she began to get flooded with speaking engagements. It was at this time she started charging for speaking and considering it as a business. Always learning, Crystal honed her business speaking skills and connected with Karen McCullough, who is a branding expert, social media enthusiast, and a Gen X and Gen Y Evangelist who has the ability to bring out great leadership qualities. Crystal read Karen’s book ‘The Seven Women Project’ in one sitting and after that her speaking business changed. Crystal got on Facebook and started talking about how much Karen’s book had changed her and how much she loved it. Once again, the universe stepped in.
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Numerous people were commenting on Crystals’ statuses about Karen’s book and immediately bought the book themselves from Crystal’s recommendation. This prompted Karen to call Crystal and personally thank her for promoting the book, which started their connection. Karen, touched by Crystal’s selflessness started working with her on her speaking business. Crystal learned from Karen that speaking is like acting. She told me
“You don’t just talk and people like you. People have a misconception that others want to hear about you because you’re unique; this is not true. People want to hear about their story, through you. How does it benefit them”?
This, is very wise advice for an aspiring speaker. Social media played a huge role in Crystal’s success as a speaker. The planners of events would find her videos on YouTube and ask her to speak. The nature of social media is that people begin to feel like they know you and are comfortable reaching out even if you Ve never met. Crystal’s break into speaking internationally came through social media in the form of YouTube. Ghana was looking for people from the US who could speak on technology and social media and found Crystal through her video. After hearing her speak, Crystal signed a contract and was flown to Ghana as the International keynote speaker at Women 2.1 Summit in 2012. Crystal shared that her day is full of reading and research to maintain current in her field and relevant as a content speaker.
“Most people don’t know what it takes to become a professional speaker. It is expensive. If you’re going to be really good, you have to study it. If you want to speak to grow your consulting business, you can just read some books, but if you want to get paid to show up on that stage- that’s a totally different animal. You have to become a student of the industry”. Crystal Washington
“That is why some speakers go towards motivational as opposed to content. It requires a lot of footwork with the ever changing rules of engagement, tools, and techniques. Content teaches you things; it adds value. Motivational makes you feel good. With motivational speakers, some of them have been seeing a decrease in companies hiring them. When a company is cutting their budgets, they will usually keep content speakers. These speakers will teach their employees tangible things that could possibly benefit the bottom line.”
It’s not uncommon entrepreneurs to make mistakes with their marketing and social media plans when starting out. Crystal shared some great insight on common issues she sees in new client’s marketing plans. She expressed that the “biggest mistake is people coming with no measurable goals in mind. If you have no goals, you don’t know when you’re successful. You don’t know what amount time you should be spending to get the best out of it. Where will you end up? You must have goals and be able to go to your business coach/ consultant knowing what they are and what you expect to come of them and BY WHEN! It’s the consultants’ job to tell the client how they can help them reach their goals. But it is your job to have them”. Just as it’s uncommon for entrepreneurs to make mistakes in their marketing and social media plans, it is not uncommon for them not know how to use or leverage social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Google+. It can be overwhelming, especially if you do not understand how they work or if they would benefit your business. Given only 10 minutes a day, Crystal gave us a quick, easy daily social media plan:
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Facebook is all about building a community. If you’re trying to crack a hard cookie on Linkedin, try to find them on FB, and start commenting on things that they are interested in. Daily, wish all of your friends a happy birthday; check all your inbox folders including your “Other” folder; check in with your key contacts (those hard cookies- special people); then just post one interesting, funny or useful post per day Effective Sesame Street!
Google + is where you go to connect with people who have like thoughts and are BRILLIANTthought leaders. If you need inspiration, if you need to learn about cutting edge, G+ is that.
“Look at your social network as a tool. First you must understand what you are trying to do. That determines what tools you will need. The weird lil’ tool that you can do everything with in the box, will probably be LinkedIn. For example, LinkedIn - You can create a professional list of contacts that see you as an expert and you can call them should you need them. Is this something you need in your business! Anytime anyone endorses you on LinkedIn, thank them. Then share what you have been up to on a status. Check your messages, add your business contacts as you meet them daily, then comment, and add one post in your groups.
Media and Success Twitter.com
Twitter, is where you go to stay on top of industry trends and build relationships with media. Daily, thank everyone who RTs (re-tweets) you. Say hello to new followers. Use the search box to find out about new ideas or concepts that interest you. If you see some good resources, re-tweet the ones that interest you. The reason why people are confused about Twitter is because they are following other confused people. When you are connected to key people, then you start to see the usefulness. Here are 3 good reasons to use Twitter: 1. The media is there because news breaks on Twitter. If a tornado happens, someone is taking a picture and posting it on Twitter. 2. It is the best research source we have in terms of social media. You can instantly look up a term and you will see some links and articles. 3. A wonderful money-saver. If you want to see how people feel about something, you don’t have to spend money on a focus group. You can just ask a question. You can save money by knowing what people like or don't like. Honda did this, with the car that they produced and people went out on the twitter page and tore the car up. Honda never released the car.
Pinterest if you need to tell a visual story.
All Social Media Sites: Make sure you are consistently touching people – reaching out. Whenever you share or repost, always add you own something to it. Otherwise you are not building your own expertise; you are building the brand of the other person.
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In closing, I asked Crystal if she would share 3 pieces of advice she would like to leave with our Power Culture readers. She shares this with you all:
tay on purpose. When S you know where you’re headed and know what your goals are, don’t allow people to pull you into their vision if it’s not in your alignment. If it can strengthen your brand, then do it. If not, leave it.
Know your value. When you know your value, it will allow you to have a more profitable business and happier life. You will do things and work on projects that are worthwhile.
To create systems. You have to have a systematic mind. Make things measurable in those systems. You need to have a systematic mind in your business or you need to leave it as a hobby. Systems are HUGE! When you find yourself doing the same thing on a regular basis, find out a way to do them efficiently. After I speak with someone about a speaking engagement- I contact my assistant, and she is on a timer to complete a set number of tasks to facilitate the terms, contract, agreements and paperwork.
Be sure to connect/follow Crystal Washington! You will never be disappointed and she will always keep it real.
Conquer Your Digital Marketing Strategy NOW!
Your 2013 Digital Marketing Strategy Explained By Tenecia Brown
Want to conquer and learn how to monetize the digital advertising game like a pro through Adwords, Facebook or Linkedin Ads, and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) strategies?
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First things first: Why do entrepreneurs need to advertise in the new digital space? The answer is simple and straightforward: the world and trends are changing and in the case of online networks, email marketing, video and digital strategies, advertising in a digital space is the new normal. We’ve covered the why, now let’s move on to four top advertising tools (Google Adwords, Facebook Ads, Linkedin Ads and SEO strategies) entrepreneurs have at their disposal.
Google Adwords Adwords offers pay-per-click advertising and site-targeted advertising for different types of ads. What does this mean for your business? It means you can create ads and choose keywords, which are words or phrases related to your business. When people search on Google using one of your keywords, your ad may appear next to or above the search results. As a result, when someone clicks on your ad, they land on your website where they can learn more about your business or make a purchase.
Facebook Ads Facebook Ads are paid messages coming from businesses, which can include social context about friends. People who like your page spend an average of two times more as your customers than people who aren’t connected to you on Facebook. What does this mean for your business? It means you can choose the page you want to promote and you can reach people who aren’t connected to your just page yet. You can also promote a specific post, which gives you greater reach and increases your chance of placement in people’s news feed and your post going viral. Also, this information will be optimized and as a result, your ad displays to the people most likely to buy and help you reach your goal.
LinkedIn Ads LinkedIn Ads are an advertising solution that allows you to place text ads on prominent pages across LinkedIn allowing you to specify which LinkedIn members view your ads by selecting a target audience. What does this mean for your business? It means you can you can target ads by job title, job function, industry, geography, age, gen-
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der, company size, company name, or LinkedIn Group. As a result, advertising on LinkedIn is much more targeted and you don’t have to worry about competitors or consumers clicking your ads.
Finally, SEO SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization and it’s the process of getting traffic from free listings on search engines. All major search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing have such results, where web pages and other content such as videos or local listings are shown and ranked based on what the search engine considers most relevant to users. What does this mean for your business? SEO is an Internet strategy and the key to success is to produce keywords (as done with your Ads) typed into the search engines that are preferred by your targeted audience.
How do they compare? Google Adwords are the best for relevancy and timeliness because people are actively searching for a particular product on Google and as a result, they are more likely to buy right away. On the other hand, Facebook Ads are relatively cheaper but their click through rate (CTR) is lower because people aren’t actively searching for a particular product on Facebook. By contrast, Linkedin Ads provide a customized approach for targeting a specific group of people, which allows you to craft a message and start a dialogue with a potential customer. On the other hand, SEO is free and organic.
Which one is best for your business? All four types of advertising are best for your business because they target different areas. While Adwords is best for relevance, Facebook includes social context, LinkedIn offers a customized approach and SEO is natural, but utilizing all four advertising tools in a diverse and strategic marketing plan will increase revenue and will ultimately lead to your digital space working for you.
Harness The Power of Marketing Through StoryTelling By: Kristi L. Jackson
e fell in love with Oprah. Not for who she is today, not for just being mega rich, but because at some point she was normal. She came from the dirt. She worked her way up and created a business from hitting a glass ceiling in her career. Oprah’s story is compelling, it resonates with many of us. Her unimaginable rags to riches rise makes us feel like we can do it too. That’s her story, and we all know it. The best businesses know how to tell a good story. For some, the business becomes a story. They romance us, they make us feel good, connected, they court us, then we buy- and at the end of the night- they score. Storytelling is an art, and according to Seth Godin,
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it’s the heart of a successful marketing campaign. In this uber competitive world, who you really are, what your company stands for, and the unique stories and facts of your business are sometimes the only fibers of individuality that your brand can hold on to. Stories have power. Told perfectly- they evoke action and admiration. Learning how to tell a narrative around your brand is one of the best lessons you can learn to make your company irresistible to potential customers and the media. Adding this skill to your 2013 marketing strategy is a smart idea. Never been a good story-teller? No worries- this is what you need to know: First, what excites you? This is the
best way to start. Think of the short commercials, the videos, the articles that made you think or that you tore out of magazines, and videos you shared on YouTube. Which ones can you remember to this day? What was the unique thing they did to capture your attention? Make a list of what was done, determine if some of those things would work for your business. See how you can weave those attributes into your own narrative.
The best storytellers leave us wanting. Don’t tell it all in one sitting.
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Storytellers are real. Honesty is paramount. You want to illicit action, you want people to love you, but make sure you don’t lie. No ten dollar words needed to describe simple facts. Embellishing the truth is not necessary to garner attention. Sometimes even the simplest of beginnings become the most enduring and memorable parts of your story. Stories need a character we can root for. Does your brand focus on you? Were you stuck, at a crossroads, laid off, discouraged, lost, told no? This is not the place to overdress your wounds or hardships, this is the place to figuratively undress... If your company focuses on a product, think about creating stories around situations your customers can relate to being in and how your company can help them. Your customer wants to be more participatory- how can you involve them or someone like them in your story? Stories are easy to follow. This is not “Scandal”. No
dips, twists and turns needed. Be creative but don’t cause confusion. A clear beginning, middle, ending and likable characters is what your already distracted, pressed for time audience can comprehend and follow. The best stories use the platforms more relatable to themmeaning, what’s your main point? Would it best be told visually using pictures or videos- maybe even without words. Is your point best described in a poem, a paper, a post? Which platform you use will be a cross between who you plan on telling your story to, where they hang out and how you want your narrative shared. Walk off the edge of your comfort zone. If you’re completely comfortable- your story may be boring. Don’t want to talk about anything personal? Then this method of marketing may not be
Walk off the edge of your comfort zone. If you’re completely comfortable - your story may be boring. 50 POWERCULTURE APR2013
for you. Storytellers are aiming for the heart strings, for compassion, for affiliation, for understanding and to get deeper than just a product or service for a customer to buy. You want them to feel you. None of these things will happen if you stay in the safe zone. The best storytellers leave us wanting. Don’t tell it all in one sitting. Use the art of perpetual marketing with each story feeding off the last one, keep your audience on the edge of their seats, talking about your brand, and swapping possible conclusions. This simple act of holding something back- “the courtship” can send potential customers to your website or social channels clamoring for more. Stories have power. They are your way to connect with your audience past facts, past figures, past a sea of options. Your story, if told completely, uniquely and consistently can cross boundaries, leap over competitors and land your product directly in your customers’ lap.
Charge your worth, but be worth every penny you charge. by Kristi L. Jackson
By: Dede Newby
the East coast, 10 small business owners were asked, whatâ€™s the difference between branding and marketing? Can you guess how many knew the answer? We will get back to that question later. In the meantime, letâ€™s examine the difference between branding and marketing and the role these essential elements play in your business. 52 POWERCULTURE APR2013
[ What is Marketing? ] To the average business owner, marketing is simply the actions taken to promote your products or services. These activities involve promotions, events, advertisements, the use of social media, and public relations. However, if you believe that the above activities are all thatâ€™s needed to build a successful brand, then you possess only a rudimentary understanding of the concept of marketing. As a result, the extent of your business success or lack thereof, will reflect your limited comprehension.
arketing not only involves the business activities of promoting and selling your products or services, but also includes a deep insight into the different psychological elements that relate to identifying and understanding your customers’ needs. Proprietors must develop marketing plans based on their customers’ psychological traits, their characteristics and desires. In doing so, administrators need to have an intimate familiarity with the following:
* What influences your customers’ purchasing decisions? * What are your customers’ purchasing behaviors? * What do they like to do? * What do they value? * What do they want? * What do they need? * What kind of music do they listen to? * What motivates them emotionally? * What are the problems that affect their lives? * Where do they shop and why?
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The above go beyond simple demographic information, such as age, gender, and income. Owners must develop complete profiles of their customers’ needs and desires to better provide the products or services that their customers actual want. Otherwise, there is a disconnect between the owner, the business, and its customers, and in the end, the business suffers greatly.
Branding is Different from Marketing
Think of branding as your corporation’s DNA. Your brand’s DNA will determine what your firm will become. It is your blueprint for identifying what your business is and is not. It’s the key ingredient to make your business stand out. Branding can be equated to your enterprise’s reputation. Branding is not the same as marketing; it supports your marketing efforts. For example, the entertainer Ace Reign markets her music by performing live at venues. This is her marketing activity. What potential buyers think of her performance establishes her brand. Her live performance may convince new customers to buy her music for the first time. However, her brand will determine whether these first-time buyers will become loyal customers and advocators of her music. Branding is a unique entity that cannot be used interchangeably with such words as marketing, PR, or advertisement. Understanding how to properly brand your organization, which is different from marketing, will directly affect your company’s bottom line. In order to effectively market your products or services, you must establish your brand first. Otherwise, you’re wasting valuable funds. You must authenticate in the minds of your consumers that your product or service is not just the best solution to their problem, but the only solution, while providing them with an unforgotten experience.
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Knowing the Difference
At the beginning I asked how many of 10 business owners were able to describe the difference between branding and marketing. The answer is two. However, more is involved than simply knowing the difference. Business owners must clearly understand that branding is more than awareness. Your product or service must say more to your customers than, “I am here”. That is not enough. In fact, branding your organization goes beyond your company’s name, logo and business card. Your brand is how your customers feel about you and your product or service after they have visited your store. Did they feel welcome? Were you and your staff approachable and likable? When your customers like you and what your stand for, your brand will glow like a beacon in the night. In turn, establishing a wellliked brand will make your marketing activities more valuable and improve your return on your investment.
The Ultimate Marketing, PR & Social Media Holy Grail By Kristi L. Jackson
This is the Ultimate Marketing, PR and Social Media Holy Grail of lists containing OVER 175 marketing articles, over 75 marketing strategies, 5 social media business guides and kick azz public relations tools. This IS the Ultimate Marketing list to get YOUR business noticed, managed, branded, and published. Get coffee and DIG in! This IS the Ultimate Marketing list to get YOUR business noticed, managed, branded, and published and is fully clickable.
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Marketing Education 1. C omprehensive Marketing Education: MarketingProfs 2. Mplans : Over 500 Examples of Strategic Marketing Plans 3. American Marketing Association Latest trends, tools and events 4. Content Marketing Institute
Marketing Strategy 1. Inc Magazine- Marketing Strategies 2. Marketing Strategy for 2013 3. 10 Marketing Strategies to Get Noticed, Booked and Paid What You’re Worth 4. 2013 Marketing Priorities Report by B2B Marketing Mentor
Help Producing Content 1. Copy for Bylines 2. CopyBlogger: TOP Content Website!!!!!! 3. Blog Post Idea Generator 4. UberSuggest : Suggestion help on steroids
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Marketing Research 1. MarketingProfs 2. Market Research 3. K now the Demographics of your ideal client: Free Demographics 4. Annual Reports: See what your competition is doing yearly 5. Research your competition, know where you stand: Compete 6. G et Company Information: Hoovers
FREE Marketing Ebooks
1. Conversion Psychology by Gregory Ciotti 2. The Ultimate Guide to Landing Page Optimization by Oli Gardner 3. Marketing Benchmarks from OVER 7000 Businesses by Hubspot 4. B 2B Marketing Innovation, Advice from 33 Thought Leaders 5. 8 Ways to Social Power Your Business by Saleforce
FREE Marketing Tools 1. G oogle Keyword Tool: Find out the best words to use in ALL of your marketing 2. Pinalytics : Find out who’s sharing what content on Pinterest 3. Ask a question, Quora gives you an answer 4. 54 Brilliant Homepage Designs from Hubspot
Social Media 1. S ocia Media for Small Business Guide 2. Twitter for Business 101 3. Do deeper Twitter analytics with Follower Wonk 4. Twitter Guide Book for Business 5. Facebook Guide for Business
Public Relations 1. A Beginner’s Guide to Public Relations 2. PRnewswire : Everything Public Relations 3. Big company exposure. Small price: Bite Size PR 4. PRWeb : Digital PR tools and management
Get Press. Some of it FREE!
Press Releases 1. P itchEngine : One of the better resources for the social media press release 2. BusinessWire : The leader in press release distribution 3. Free Press Release 4. S ubmit your press release today, get results tomorrow : prLeap 5. Blog Friendly PR
1. Help a Reporter Out (HARO) 2. Reporter Connection 3. Seek or Shout : Connect. Collaborate. Communicate 4.The Journalist’s Little Black Book : Flacklist 5. Post your pitch and POOF, find out the journalists to connect with : MatchPoint 6. Find the journalists you need on twitter and social media : Muck Rack 7. Find bloggers looking for someone with your expertise : Bloggers Link Up
Kick Azz Marketing, Branding & Social Media Articles 1. “ How to Get Major Press without a PR Firm” by Derek Halpern of Social Triggers 2. “ How to Write an Insanely Popular Blog” by Aaron Aders 3. 177 Guerilla Marketing Articles by Jay Conrad Levinson 4. “ 51 Ways to Increase Your Credibility, Visibility and Hireability” by AnneMarie Cross
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Ignore uninformed opinions on why your business won't work. Just smile, change the subject and continue your plan to succeed anyway. by Kristi L. Jackson
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Determining Your Media
Mix By: Remi Roy
Ever been to an African market? I mean a real traditional marketplace? Itâ€™s never quiet. Always bustling with sellers calling out to potential customers in loud voices, advertising their wares and persuading anyone and everyone to buy, hoping someone stops by to sample their goods. It can be quite difficult for customers to decide on whom to purchase from.
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his may be difficult for you to envision but the online market can be a lot like that. Unfortunately some companies spend a lot of time and money, ‘calling out their wares’ and screaming as loud as they can only to catch the attention of people who are not interested in their product at all. What will make your marketing stand out? How do you harness your marketing energies so it’s making the desired mark? The trick is to engage with purpose. By that , I mean choose your online platforms with the end in mind. There are a myriad of platforms out there, you want to market yourself on the ones that can give you the most exposure and advantage. Think of the online space as your rowdy, busy, marketplace and ask yourself these questions:
What am I offering?
Sure, you know what you do. But how do you categorize it? Is it a product or a service? Will visual appeal help enhance your marketing strategies? Then you might want to go with a platform that helps you make eye-catching displays. E.g. think of a Florist’s displays on Facebook, Pinterest, or Video ads on YouTube.
Who am I offering it to?
Your target audience is just that. Your target. Knowing the demographics will help you decide on a suitable platform (or platforms as the case may be.) A study on the demographics of twitter users in 2012 shows that people between the ages of 15 and 25 are the most engaged twitter users. If you passionately need to reach teenagers and 62 POWERCULTURE APR2013
young adults, you know where to direct your energies. Where is your target audience? That’s where you should go.
How well am I doing? Analytics can save your life. They give you an insight into what your audience likes, what they find interesting, and what they’re willing to go an extra mile for. This can be a tasking and time consuming process but if you need to know how well you’re engaging then it’s an investment that will pay off. The information you get here may also let you know if you’re reaching out either to the wrong audience or through the wrong platform.
How well is my platform doing? It may not be all your fault. If your social media marketing isn’t making the impact you desire you may need to look into how well your chosen platform is doing in the scheme of things. There are so many networking sites out there and more are springing up every day. Competition is stiff and users have the liberty to migrate at will. Don’t be caught sleeping. Go where the action is. Be open and deliberate about your marketing. No harm in kissing a few frogs before you settle on the platform that’s right for you, but getting on every social networking site out there may not be the best idea. You may spread yourself too thin when you could be digging deeper in one spot and creating an engaged community. Remember, engaging with a purpose is what you’re trying to do not getting on every wagon because it’s going somewhere.
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My Brown Box
Awesome new business, innovative concept. My Brown Box is the #1 subscription beauty service for women of color! Conveniently delivering beauty, lifestyle and luxury straight to your door monthly! Officially launched January 5, 2013. We love their idea AND will be a new customer.
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Crush Karlaâ€™s Closet
This lil lady has style dripping from her fingertips- literally with her own beautiful jewelry collection, BUT itâ€™s her use of technology and free tools that excites us. She has created a following and a strong community of readers who wait with baited breath on her beautiful photos and clamor to buy her limited release, unique jewelry designs.
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â€˘ Quit turning men who should be friends, into boyfriends. Associates who are fun to hang with into business partners. Or try to turn family into clients. Accept everyone for the role they play in your life and business and understand the positions they were never meant to play. by Kristi L. Jackson
The Women of Power
The 1st Multi-Speaker, Multi-Country Virtual Summit for Women! Last year’s Women of Power Virtual Summit was monumental. Over the course of 3 days, Women CEO Project hosted the first of its kind conference, that reached over 1300 ambitious and aspiring business women all over the world.
June 25-27th, we will host our Largest FREE Event of the year AGAIN! This year’s Women of Power Summit offers some unique Branding and Sponsorship Opportunities for the company who wants to:
• Have access to Marketing and Branding Opportunities Across Multiple Digital Media Platforms
• Get their brand in front of an engaged local and global audience for OVER a month of advertising and 3 full days of interactive penetration
• Reach a local and global, tech-savvy, goal-oriented business woman through yearly soft marketing of this unique event
Branding and Sponsorship Opportunities for this year’s Women of Power Summit are VERY Limited. To see if you’re a good fit for this event, Click Here to apply! www.womenofpowersummit.com 67POWERCULTURE APR2012
A 3 Part Article Series on How to create a powerful, magnetic Signature Brand that gets you noticed, hired and paid what youâ€™re worth
Branding Done Right By: AnneMarie Cross
Get a glass of wine, pen and paper and bring an open mind. Dig in and learn from Branding Coach AnneMarie Cross. 68 POWERCULTURE APR2013
5 reasons why you should be a strong Signature Brand Are you running a service-based business and believe your branding is all about your logo, tagline and brochures? While these are important elements of your brand’s ‘touch points’, when I refer to your business’s brand what I am talking about goes much deeper than your stationery and tagline. So what is a brand? Your brand is your reputation; it’s the promise of value you offer a client and the immediate thought that a prospect and/or client has when your business name is mentioned. While it can take time and commitment to build a strong brand, it is well worth the effort if you want to build a thriving business.
Here are 3 signs that your service-based business has a weak and incoherent brand: 1. Your ideal clients/ prospects are not investing in your services
2. You feel on the verge of marketing burnout, exhaustion and desperation
3. You struggle to charge what you’re worth
Sending out weak, mixed messages will only confuse a prospect and a confused mind says ‘no’. If you’re unsure of what makes you unique, what sets you apart from your competitors, and the value/benefits you offer your clients, then your brand communications will be ineffective in showing your prospect why they should be investing in you and not your competitors.
What often occurs when businesses are not generating the results they desire is that they increase their marketing efforts. However, the problem is not the amount of marketing being done but the fact that their marketing message is confusing and not speaking to the needs of your prospects, which leads us back to our previous sign of clients not investing.
A business owner with a weak brand will often find it difficult to charge a premium fee because they fail to demonstrate the value, benefits and results clients will achieve through hiring them. For this reason the level of income the business generates is often considerably lower than a business with a strong reputation and brand.
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Here are five benefits of building a strong, authentic brand 1. P osition yourself as an expert
Having a strong brand will enable you to position yourself as a specialist to build a reputation as a credible authority in your field. Showcasing your knowledge and expertise in your articles/blog posts and through sharing your success stories and that of your client’s is important. Q: What are your strengths and talents? What makes you unique and sets you apart from your competitors? What stories can you share to showcase your expertise?
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2. Charge a higher fee due to increased perceived value
It’s a well-known fact that experts and specialists are able to charge a higher premium for their services because of the perceived value. When I first started the career coaching arm of my business some 15 years ago and compare it to where I am now, through building my brand and positioning myself as an expert I have been able to increase my fees by over 12,000%. I would never have been able to achieve this if I had a weak and incoherent brand message. Q: What’s the value you offer clients? What solutions can you offer them to help them overcome their issues and problems? Are you writing about this convincingly in your marketing materials?
3. Create a powerful, clear and
Having a clear understanding of your brand and your brand message will ensure that everything you write, including your articles, blog posts and social media messages continues to portray a clear and consistent message. When planning my content I know the topics I write/speak about (including branding, marketing and mindset) will help servicebased business owners in getting noticed, hired and paid what theyâ€™re worth. This is a consistent message that I continue to share with my community therefore building my reputation as an expert in my field. Q: What are the topics you are an expert in? Do these topics relate to one target market? Is your target market interested in this topic? How frequently will you connect with your audience?
4. Attract your ideal client
A strong brand and brand message will enable you to attract and speak directly to the needs of your ideal clients. Itâ€™s vital you understand the problems and issues your clients are experiencing and demonstrate that you have the solutions to support your clients in overcoming these problems once and for all. My ideal clients are service-based businesses that have amazing value to offer their clients however continue to struggle with generating the level of income they desire. My clients can see that I provide a solution to their issues in my article/blog posts and videos/ podcasts and when theyâ€™re ready to take action and generate the level of income they desire they know where to find me. Q: Are your communications attracting your ideal client? If not, is your message focused on the needs of your target market? Are you explaining the benefits and results your clients will achieve through investing in you?
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5. Create a unique brand that is difficult to copy
While your competitors may try to emulate what you are doing, it will be difficult to maintain because an authentic brand is one that is unique to you and very difficult to copy and maintain in a believable manner. Q: What makes you unique? What qualities and characteristics do you possess that have enabled you to generate amazing outcomes and can become your promise of value to prospects? Remember, these things are unique to you and will become an important element in building a strong brand.To start building a powerful and authentic brand, ensure you identify your unique qualities and strengths; communicate a clear and consistent message that speaks to the needs of your ideal client; and continue to showcase the value and benefits your clients will achieve through investing in you.
3 Mistakes that can stop you from creating a magnetic Signature Brand My first business venture was a secretarial and bookkeeping service, which I started when my first child was around 18 months of age. Back then I had no idea about branding and the important steps I needed to take to build a successful service-based business. So after printing out a stack of flyers and placing an advertisement in the local paper – I sat back and waited for the phone to ring. Boy was I disappointed. While I managed to pick up a few clients here and there, I certainly wasn’t creating the strong presence I needed to attract a steady stream of prospects to my door. And when I did get the occasional enquiry, I would find, more often than not, that I’d have to justify my price and offer a discount in order to win the job. So not only was I struggling to get clients – I was also struggling to get paid what I was worth. Fast forward to today - thank goodness I invested in personal and professional development. The lessons I learned from my business coach and mentor were learning how to build a strong personal brand. So, if you’re at a stage in your business where you are branding (or re-branding), here are the top 3 mistakes that you’ll want to avoid.
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Business Branding Mistake 1: You try to emulate what other successful people are doing
I recently tweeted: “Want to build a strong brand? Authenticity and integrity are vital. Don’t try to be something you’re not. It’ll show.” To put this into context, picture this. One of your competitors has a charismatic, yet controversial style and is known for dropping a few colorful words when voicing her opinion. She’s all about shaking things up and destroying the status quo. If she doesn’t like something, she’ll tell you so in her usual powerful and edgy manner. She has a large following on her social media networks who love her work and her business is thriving. Seeing all of her success and achievements, you try to emulate these qualities and approach in your business. But guess what? It’s exhausting; it feels awkward; and despite your efforts, you’re just not attracting anywhere near the results you had hoped for. In fact, you’re still the world’s best-kept secret, and you’re feeling miserable and frustrated. No wonder. Trying to be someone you’re not takes an enormous amount of energy. And more importantly, it’s not the ‘real you’ that’s showing up in your business so of course it feels unnatural and awkward. Nothing speaks louder and more powerful than when you give yourself permission show up as ‘you’ in your business.
Business Branding Mistake 2: You listen to the advice of others
Despite their best of intentions to provide you with sound branding advice on how to distinguish your services from all of your competitors, it’s impossible for anyone to truly understand your vision, your values and core beliefs. These are the things that you stand for – it’s the core of who you are and one of the many aspects you should identify as you work through the branding process. I’ve been a Personal Branding Strategist for well over a decade, however, in all those years, never have I told a client what they should be doing with their brand, how they should act, what they should say, or what their brand attributes/strengths, their brand voice, or their brand story should be. Going through the branding process should involve unearthing essential information about ‘you’ and what is unique about ‘your’ brand, not what I (or anyone else for that matter) believe you should be. My own values and beliefs can cloud a client’s true essence, which is why I’ll never tell someone what they should be. Rather, I’ll ask the right questions and present them with the right tools to help them unearth their inner brilliance and the key elements that will help them identify the core elements. All of this information will become part of their own powerful, magnetic Signature Brand. So, when working on identifying key elements for your brand, make sure that whatever you incorporate into your brand is uniquely you and resonates with who you are and what you stand for. Not what someone else has told you to be.
Business Branding Mistake 3: You work on all of your external brand touch points but not the core elements of your brand
The branding process MUST start with you. The core of your brand MUST reflect vital elements such as your mission, your values and your purpose. Your unique characteristics and key factors that drive you forward with immense passion and why you have chosen the work you do with your clients will influence your Signature Brand and how you will continue to show up in the world. As Jim Signorelli outlines in his Story Branding videos, the branding process should start with identifying the inner layers of your brand. It’s the ‘why’ you do what you do. “It’s the cause that you’re trying to promote.” Once you have identified these core elements, then you can start to work on the outer layers of your brand such as your logo, brochures, designs and other brand touch points. Start with the core elements of your brand first and then move onto the outer layers of your brand.
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5 key elements of a powerful, magnetic Signature Brand More and more businesses are recognizing the value of ‘branding’ however many don’t really understand the key elements that will enable them to create a strong and memorable brand. Your brand is much more than your letterhead, your tag line, your business name, your business card, or your USP (unique selling proposition), etc. Your brand is your reputation, your promise of value and the experience and results a client can expect through working with you.
Here are 5 key elements that will support you in building a strong brand: 1. A strong brand is clear on its mission and purpose
A strong brand is clear on its mission and continues to stand up for what it believes in, no matter what. The brand owner’s conviction (which is motivated by core values) is at the heart of the work they do and is what continues to drive them forward. Service-based business owners whose work is aligned with their mission and purpose are extremely passionate about what they are doing and continue to portray this message in all of their communications. Their mission, purpose and passion for their work are unmistakable and are what enables them to make strong connections with their prospects, their clients and the people with whom they continue to network. Mark J Kay, in his conceptual paper ‘Strong Brands & Corporate Brands’ stated, “… strong corporate brands are distinctive.” One of the companies he referred to was The Body Shop, where he goes on to say, “Unlike other small businesses, the founders [of The Body Shop] were clearly driven by values.. They hold strong beliefs about business and they carefully crafted mission or values statements to communicate their specific goals.” The Body Shop is a prime example of a company that “has made meaningful connections with customers.” Are you attracting and building meaningful connections? Are your communications resonating with people you want to support, who share similar goals and can benefit from investing in you? Or are you just creating a list of names and followers of people that have no idea about what you stand for and therefore do not participate, respond to or take action on the advice you offer?
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2. A strong brand understands and leverages its uniqueness
As a service-based business owner to position yourself strongly within your field you should strive to build a reputation as a specialist and an expert. To achieve expert status it is imperative that you are able to define your strengths, talents and what makes you unique, while also feeling comfortable in positioning yourself as a specialist. Unfortunately, many service-based business owners fail to truly understand what makes them unique and feel very uncomfortable claiming specialist status. If you don’t recognize the value you offer your clients, how can you expect prospects to understand the benefits and outcomes they’ll receive should they decide to invest in your services? Remember, while there may always be additional information to learn, what’s important is your knowledge, strengths, reputation and the ability to support your clients in overcoming their obstacles and achieving solid results which is the value you offer. Be proud of that and continue to promote your skills and expertise to your ideal prospects in all of your marketing and communications.
3. A strong brand is clear on its target market
For service-based businesses who cannot define their ideal clients’ issues and problems while also demonstrating how they can support these clients in overcoming these issues often communicate inconsistent, mixed messages. And, a confused prospect, who doesn’t understand what you do or more importantly, how you can support them, will say ‘no’. When a business owner doesn’t generate the response they had hoped for they continue to increase their marketing efforts, however as they continue to send out a mixed message, they continue to confuse prospects. It’s an unpleasant vicious circle and can lead to frustration and marketing burnout. As Personal Branding Evangelist – William Arruda aptly states: “Personal branding is not about being all things to all people or trying to please all of the people all of time; it’s about taking a stand and being comfortable knowing that some will not agree with your point of view. Of course, this does not mean being contrary for the sake of it, either. You must be clear about what you believe and willing to express those beliefs.” Are you trying to be all things to all people? Do you feel like you’re on the verge of marketing burnout because despite all the marketing you’ve been doing, you’re just not generating the results you were hoping for? You may just be sending out mixed and confused messages.
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4. A strong brand maintains a consistent on-brand message
It can take a significant amount of time, energy and commitment to build a strong brand, however your brand and reputation can be tarnished by an inappropriate post, picture or conversation you have with members of your community. Ensure you have key brand management strategies to support you in maintaining a consistent on-brand message. Be mindful of what you post, your interactions with your community, the pictures you share, the groups you join and the people you associate with. All of these things can negate all of the hard work you’ve been doing if the message you send out is off-brand.
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5. A strong brand continues to build solid relationships with its community
Is building and maintaining solid relationships with your community important to you? It should be. Are you interacting and sharing valuable information with your community? Are you responding promptly to your community’s comments and questions? Do you thank them for sharing your messages with their extended community? These are all activities you should be doing every day. Remember, your brand is your reputation; ensure you maintain it – your business’s survival depends on it!
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Published on Apr 13, 2013
Power Culture Magazine is a A Digital Gem dedicated to the Ambitious, Tech-Savvy, Connected, Woman in Business. This is the Ultimate Marketi...