It’s always been a dream of mine to attend Fashion Week in New York City. Thanks to a local charity auction, it became a reality a few weeks ago. In April, Wheels of Success, a nonprofit in Tampa that provides automobiles for people in need, held their annual fundraiser. Like many charity events, they had a live auction offering some very cool items. The package I bid on and won was two tickets to go to a show at the 2014 Mercedes Benz Fashion Week in New York City.
Stress sucks energy out of people, then they get distracted and don't produce because they cannot focus on the stuff that makes them productive. Without productivity a professional or entrepreneur can't generate value, which converts to income and joy, which makes them really stressed. A lot of stress that we invite into our lives is preventable. But often we don't invest in small things that when you need them have a big payoff.
CNN’s Anderson Cooper created the Ridiculist, where he features questionable news items, actions and interesting people with his signature full on snarky smile. FOX has Bill O’Reilly and his Pinheads, a noble collection of his favorite idiotic personalities doing really stupid things. This week I’m rolling out Brand Bummers, my official list of brands, people and organizations doing things that I scratch my head and go WHY?
Brand and branding are a part of everyday life, pop culture and even the media. It’s not uncommon to hear a journalist, a high school kid or even a seemingly out of touch, very mature [...]
I wrote this blog a couple of years ago. Today it may even be more relevant as brands and businesses look for fresh ways to stand out in a busy and noisier marketplace. If you read it the first time, I've added some new ways to stand out that are worth checking out.
Odd Fish Finish First
Imagine a big glass tank loaded up with hundreds of squirmy gold fish. Pick the one you want and in seconds you’ve lost it because they all look alike. Suddenly, behind the coral tree, from within the school of many, emerges a slim, purple and orange fish. He quickly stands out from the group, his distinctiveness apparent. He swims around with a unique confidence and a bold identity, while the others just seem to fade away.
Using video is like adding high-octane fuel to a Hennessey Venom. In case you missed it, because you blinked, this year the Hennessey Venom GT broke the world speed record at 270.49 mph at the Kennedy Space Center. “Video has been the fastest and most consistently growing medium for content marketing,” said Lori Rosen, Executive Director, Custom Content Council. Want more traction on your Website and social media channels? Add video. Branded video is sharable. It can become viral. Today everyone can use video. I recently added video to my branding tool kit. When I speak, I open every brand talk with my Branding Boogie music video. The video tells a story about boring Bob’s brand and his cry for help. This drama sets the tone for my presentation message. Boring will get you nowhere.
Vision boards – get what you want I recently attended the National Speaker Association’s mid-year conference. I took away many awesome ideas about branding, presentation skills and new technology. My biggest takeaway was to accelerate your success, get a vision board. In the early 1990s, I always had a vision board, in my office, at my branding agency in Houston. A large black bulletin covered with pictures of situations, places and things I wanted to experience, share or own. When I made something happen or achieved a milestone, I removed the item from the board. By the late 90s, my vision board was empty and I had manifested a bunch of amazing stuff. I credit that board of pictures as an important tool that kept me laser focused on my goals.
Great brands connect to customers in emotional ways. They surprise them, delight them and make them feel special. This past week I took my mother to her first Tampa Bay Lightning game. I go often, and as always the experience was blast. The Lightning hospitality team is world-class. I’ve blogged about them before. Every staffer treats you like you are the most important customer. As my mom and I were headed to our seats, we asked the usher for assistance. I mentioned to him this was my mom’s first time to a Tampa Bay Lightning game. Acting like we were the most important fans in the house, he introduced himself as Tom. We small talked with him for a few minutes. He told us how much he loved his job and that he had worked for the Lightning for ten seasons.
Over the past few months, I’ve been giving my brand, Karen Post, The Branding Diva® some deep pondering and exploration time. Thinking through where I’ve been and where I want to go. Most importantly, what do I need to do to further separate myself from other speakers, consultants and writers whose expertise is branding or marketing too. The photo posted here will give you a sneak preview of what I’m doing. I’ll be showing you more in the coming blogs. Brands are a work in progress (W.I.P). They evolve and the best ones continue to improve their distinction, story telling, and they freshen up their communications to reflect their essence, standout and stay relevant.