It’s never easy to let go of something that’s been a part of you, your work and your life for years. Brands come and go. Some last longer than others. Recently Procter and Gamble alluded to saying goodbye to approximately 20% of their brands – the underperforming ones. The ones that didn’t align to the company’s core business and the ones consumers just don’t care about anymore. One of these includes Ivory soap. If you were born before this decade, you know the brand.
The last 60 days I’ve been MIA from social media. Except for a few random tweets, my social channels have been inactive. While social media is seductive, persuasive and can influence behavior and actions that impact my economy and help build my brand, I consciously opted out. WHY? My plate has been full with other branding projects, speeches and personal obligations that required my brain and bandwidth.
. . . and lives a happier and more fulfilling new life. A couple weeks ago I attended the The Raymond James Gasparilla Festival of the Arts in Tampa with my buddy, fellow motivational speaker Tami Evans. Showcasing over 300 talented artists, the event transforms a downtown Tampa park into an amazing outdoor museum. I really enjoy attending festivals where creatives not only get to show their work, but where capitalism is alive and well and the masters of this talent earn money too. And when I discover a new artist, buy a piece of their work and there is a story of a newly born entrepreneur, that’s a bonus!
Tiny, fine print has a bad name and in most cases it should. When a company or brand communicates something important, pertaining to policy, it should be transparent and upfront. Instead, many companies hide important details in very small print knowing that 98% of people won’t ever read it. This is no better than whispering, “your pants are on fire” to a deaf person. It’s just not cool. Here’s the story. Three years ago, a Utah couple had a bad experience with an online retailer called Kleargear.com. After the transaction, they posted a negative review on a consumer-venting site called ripoffreport.com. They cited that the purchased item was never shipped and after numerous attempts, could not even get a customer service person to help them.
I know first hand social media can be a valuable, income generating tool. My social media efforts have landed me business (a million dollar contract in 2008), sold books and products, aided my international media presence and hooked me to important resources and new friends. Social media can provide a garden of goods that are aligned to your goals, or it can make you feel like your endless efforts produce no more than a crop of crappy connections that suck time and don't produce a worthy return on your investment. Follow these tips and your odds of success will increase.
You've experienced a brand earthquake. A recession hit. Your once-successful retail company was forced to declare bankruptcy. Everything around you has crumbled, your credit has been destroyed and all that was once working for you and familiar to you is now gone, including most of your customers. But suddenly, after a year of reorganization, legal battles and a production freeze, you have new investors. And you're in charge of leading the brand turnaround—introducing the new face to a 30-year-old store brand. For a shaken brand that has lost its core buyers, the goal is to find the new and former buyers who will forgive and forget past missteps and love the brand like it was loved once before.
Do you have the skills, mindset and traits to save a sinking brand, no matter how rough the seas get? Branding guru, CEO, marketing director, head honcho, boss, manager, entrepreneur—whatever your title, one day you may be faced with an unexpected challenge. Lead with courage, you’ll likely turn it around. Manage with mediocrity, and your brand’s life may be very short. Leading a brand turnaround is no easy role. If it were, there’d be fewer brand casualties. It takes a special kind of person—one who can lead and battle through brand bumps, uncertainty and the stress that comes with unfortunate situations like product recalls, scandal and controversy.
In the past few years, personal branding has become a hot business topic. News anchors and journalists refer to individual brands when they cover business leadership superstars and business losers too. Executive recruiters consider a candidate’s brand when they are on a search for the best professional for a position and most entrepreneurs’ success depends on their strong, personal brand to attract employees, get funding and be an ambassador of their company. Last month Daytime, a nationally broadcasted TV show that airs in over 35 markets, invited me to help out with a special segment called “Getting back to work”. The goal was to take two professionals who had lost their jobs and with an improved personal branding program, help them find the ideal career or opportunity.
Results from a 25-point social media reach-out research project. Last month, September 14th to be exact, I posted a blog about such a social media research project. With all the hype around social media marketing strategies and available tactics for businesses, I was curious if a full throttle social media approach would make a difference for a small business with my revenue model. I earn money from consulting, speaking and writing. Objective: Determine if a 25-point social media effort is worth the investment and results. TOP LINE FINDINGS FROM STUDY Is a social media blitz on 25 different points of contact a good use of time and money that produces a meaningful return and results vs. the cost?
I'm very fortunate to have an awesome social media team supporting my message and assisting our client's in reaching their goals. Allow me to introduce the "A" social team to you as they contribute to branding content, SEO solutions and marketing outreach on the front line and behind the scenes. Pictured above from left to right is Lauren Angrick, Chief Problem Solver for all my companies and to the right of me is Jess English our newest social media team member who is Community Manager for Restaurant Branding Roadmap, our soon to launch DIY self small business branding program for restaurants