Whenever I talk about developing your personal brand and leadership, I talk about finding your Passion and Your Why and then I liken it to building the Pyramids and then explain how to build your personal “Me Inc” Pyramid.
I developed this concept when managing high profile sportspeople as a visual way to get them thinking about what was right or wrong for their brand.
Pyramids are made up of blocks / bricks based upon a solid foundation. As such as we develop and grow through our life we are constantly faced with decisions about the options available to us. These options can be viewed as bricks and each assessed as to whether it adds value and strength to our pyramid or in fact it may take a brick out and lead to the pyramid collapsing
But increasingly your personal brand is about how others see you and the expectations and the norms that society wants to limit and measure you with. This has lead to developing the concept of your approach to life (your style) and hence how others perceive you as being bubble like. At the right end of the Bubble is the very traditional view of normal behaviour for a person of your age, general, race, creed, etc etc and at the other end are the boundaries that may or may not be acceptable within your society.
These days, in the age of Disruptive Innovation, we need to explore and push those boundaries in developing the real you without being perceived as Out of Control – just as much as you need to avoid being too “normal” and as such being seen as boring and uninteresting. Continue reading It’s Your Bubble and Your Pyramid
The need for this blog was promoted by a meeting I observed in a coffee shop today. It appeared that a local wine producer had engaged an Asian graphic designer/translator to develop a Chinese version of his packaging and his marketing materials…but clearly he doesn’t get China and his advisor, I assume, was just telling him what he wanted to hear. It appeared that getting ready for China to him was about translation and not branding.
All I needed to see were the new labels for his wine…they looked exactly like the Australian ones with Chinese Characters. Why is that an issue.? Well his labels are all solid black with white writing. The worst colour combination for China.
Chinese would look at that label and assume if they drank it they would die…as that’s what Black in China represents.
The message here is unless you have a very strong, successful and highly sought after Western Brand you are going to need some drastic rebranding for China. Continue reading China Ain’t China
… but its the product and your Brand story not the promotion that combine to build business
The old days where it was all about promotion, advertising, selling… but it’s now about engaging, conversing, two-way communication rather than shouting and your website is a key tool to build long-term communities of support for your Brand. People these days want to feel some ownership of a Brand if they support it and via Web 2.0 tools and tactics this is made easy.
So as with everything when designing, planning, building a highly effective website make sure you Begin with the End in Mind.
John Jantsch the man behind the Duct Tape Marketing – Blog, Podcast and Book is a master at providing practical marketing advice for Small Business. And when it comes to website content we share some very common opinions and views. So below I present my ideas (greatly influenced by reading John’s book and how to do Good Content for your website.
If it’s in your marketing profile it should be on your website … and it should be in your words and those of the people you help….so make sure all materials are in sync and where possible re-use the same content … its quicker, easier, cheaper and consistency is everything..
“I like to use a case statement as the home page content. Dont waste time with some sort of “Welcome to our Website” message. Hit your visitor with the most compelling marketing copy you have.” John Jantsch – Duct Tape Marketing.
But make sure it’s not laced with Marketing speak and meaningless babble . Keep it concise and to the point as you would if someone stops you in the street and asks you what you do these days …. so No Worlds best practice, market leading etc etc . People want to know what you can do for them and why they should trust you… and will give you the minimum of time to convince them to read on.
Say what you be ….. but be what you say.
And then back up this short compelling opener with – Your Brand Story in Your Words and testimonials that back you up throughout the site … preferably in video but as a minimum have a picture to go with any text.
And then think about what you would like to see if you were your own best prospect …
Whats different about you … why choose you over others.
How do you operate … what can people expect from working with you
Your story told your way
“Tell them your story in an open, honest. and entertaining way, and you will win their hearts as well as their heads.” John Jantsch
A profile of your ideal client/s … so I can easily see that “we” are a god match
A single clear and concise statement of the products and services you provide
As many case studies as you have that are relevant to the claims you make
And a list of clients … so that as a prospect I feel good about the company I will be keeping
So now that you have sorted out the sort of things you need to say you need some professional help to put it together – Someone that can sort out the most costs effective design, technology and above all strategy to make sure that the Right People find you. So forget about HTML, SEO and find someone to bring all of the right resources into play to make sure that you end up with a powerful marketing weapon that is closely aligned to your corporate goals and ethics.
– Keep It Simple
– Start each page with a Powerful headline backed by a well presented intro paragraph
– Keep navigation simple …. make sure you test it out on a few people first… and create links to every page and lots of text links within pages to allow for a variety of ways that people will use the site. For example if there is a term you use often set up a link to an explanation/definition.
John in his book also presents a list of “Shoot the Web Designer if they ……”
Suggest Flash intro pages – look great but serve no purpose unless your visitors are seeking entertainment
Suggest Frame pages – search engines don’t like them
Suggest templates – they are inexpensive … and look it … and wont allow you to match your key identity elements at all well
But make sure you site incorporates Your Blog, Your Status updates from Twitter and LinkedIn, Links to your Facebook Fanpage. … preferably embedded in the home page as per the example above.
Free Resources that are valuable to your visitor
Article and case studies that are relevant… esp if written by you or referring to you
Ability to syndicate content via RSS
Creative Commons Content that may be useful to your visitors .. another freebie that adds value
And above all do all that you can to help people find you via what ever form of search they use.