Jeremiah Gardner is an author, speaker, lean brand practitioner, and bulldog lover. He helps startups, entrepreneurs and Fortune 500 organizations reframe the way they think about brand innovation, culture, and leadership. He is a sought after speaker, and has been featured in several media outlets including Forbes, Entrepreneur Magazine, Lifehacker, The Guardian, Branding Magazine, and SayDaily. You can score a free copy of his book, The Lean Brand via our Membership Program here
Entrepreneurship is hard.
The countless articles listing out the “Top 10 Things To Be A Winning Entrepreneur” or “Five Ways to Find Success Fast” are all bunk. There is no way around it, being an entrepreneur is hard work.
Probability suggests that you’ll find yourself somewhere between making a decent living and yelling at a volleyball named Wilson like Tom Hanks in Castaway.
That doesn’t mean its not worth it. Read More >
There is no special formula to build a brand, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t certain things that businesses can do to help the process. According to Washington, D.C.-based advertising agency Pappas Group, building a distinctive brand can be as simple as avoiding the common mistakes that many other businesses commit.
The top 10 mistakes small businesses should avoid when building a brand comes from Pappas Group’s experience working on advertising campaigns with companies such as Rosetta Stone, DoubleTree Hotels, Volkswagen and Honest Tea. They include:
1. Defining their brand too narrowly — “Sometimes startups think that launching their companies on a crowdsource platform and enlisting a talented designer to make them a cool logo is an adequate way to establish their brand. But the goal of a brand is much broader: it is the promise you make to customers about what they can expect in all interactions with your people, products, services and company. When startups have a narrow view of what a brand is, it is impossible to build a genuine experience that their customers want to be a part of.”
2. Trying to be everything to everyone — “A startup shouldn’t try to appeal to ‘the general public.’ Instead, they should have a strong point of view that captivates the early adopters and influencers of their target audience. For example, Toms Shoes was really successful at building an army of brand advocates early on. They were able to do so because they created an experience that socially conscious Gen X consumers, and consequently their friends, wanted to be a part of.” Read More >
Morgan Linton is a domain name investor and author of the popular blog www.MorganLinton.com. Over the last four years Morgan has focused on turning meaningful domain names into real online brands. Morgan is also one of the founders of Appraiso, a new software platform that enables website owners to appraise the value of their developed sites. In April Morgan will be moderating the Domaining Europe conference in Valencia, Spain.
When I was sixteen years old I fell in love with BMW. No, I didn’t have a BMW myself but we did have a family friend that owned one and the moment I saw it, I set a goal to own one myself someday. Well that day finally came on my 26th Birthday, ten years later, and as a web geek that just bought a BMW, I wanted to start a blog to share my experiences with the world.
One of the first names that came to mind was “Bimmer” the most popular word used to describe BMWs. I was a member of Bimmer Forums and a subscriber to Bimmer magazine so the brand had a lot of meaning to me. Of course I couldn’t get the .COM and after trying my next top choices, I found that none were available. Read More >
Isha Edwards is an idea catalyst whose skills and experience enables her to implement a brand-driven approach to establishing, operating, and growing a business.
According to the American Marketing Association, a brand is a “name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s good or service as distinct from those of other sellers”. Besides being a name, a brand may also be a symbol (The Coca-Cola Company), motto (Nike), color combination (Tiffany & Co.), and even a sound (NBC).
To distinguish between brand names or characteristics and the brand or branding process, brand is best defined by two of the eight parts of speech. Brand is mostly used as a noun because it literally translates to the name of a person, place or thing. If a person, place or thing does not have a memorable name or other identifying characteristics, differentiation is limited as is consumer awareness and, subsequently, sales. When used with an object, brand is also a verb. Although branding usually begins with a name or image, it continues with lights, cameras, and a whole lot of action!
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Jessica Kupferman is the owner of social media and design firm Digital Stew. Feel free to connect on Twitter, on Facebook or on her website.
So you’ve got a brilliant idea, a show-stopper, and you’re ready to light the world on fire? Well, not so fast. First you’ve got to give that genius of yours a winning look. After all, we don’t go to the jewelry store to look at diamonds in the rough, right? We go to look at the shiny, sparkly, diamonds! (Well, I do, at least.)
The first piece of advice I have for anyone going out there for the first time is to really invest in the design. Do NOT have your cousin or your wife’s friend from work do it, unless they are paid full time in some capacity as a designer. A good designer will have education in what makes good design, they will have proper designer software, and they will have the proper computer to create designs. Make sure you entrust your big idea to a professional. This is your first impression they’re creating, and as we know, you only get one chance to make a first impression. Read More >