Your Best Online Marketing Brand Will Be Invisible

Recently I was chatting with “Mary,” a neighbor who holds a responsible senior position in a major hospital. I told her I had just reviewed a really awful book on personal branding.

Mary frowned. “I hate all this branding stuff,” she said. “I don’t want a brand. I don’t have a brand. I’m just me.”

“But I bet you’ve got a reputation,” I said. “You’ve been around awhile. People say things like, ‘Mary’s the go-to person when we have a crisis.’ Or, ‘Mary’s completely reliable: when she says something, you know she’s as good as her word.

Mary nodded slowly. You could see the wheels turning as she realized she had plenty to brag about… and her brag would be the beginnings of her brand.

“You know, you’re right,” she said. “I guess I do have a brand after all.”

Mary is not unique. Many business owners claim they don’t have a brand. Sometimes they tell me they can’t see other people’s brands either. “Sam is a famous millionaire marketer,” they say, “and he doesn’t have a brand. He’s just… Sam. He doesn’t even have a logo!”

Of course Sam has a brand. It’s just invisible. And that means it’s even more effective. It’s stealth marketing: you don’t realize it till you’ve experienced the power.

It’s like make-up or a really good hair coloring job. “Professional make-up job” means people assume tell you’re wearing any. And we compliment our hair stylist when people say, “Oh, do you color you hair? It looks so natural.”

Bottom line: When it’s invisible, we feel we’ve reached the real YOU.

Recently I was listening to a teleseminar by a well-known media coach. I was struck by her unique speaking style, which communicates her brand: smooth, confident and completely different from most presenters. She doesn’t seem to be selling. She sounds casual and conversational.

But if you listen closely you will recognize some fine-ly developed marketing techniques. She seems to be telling stories but every line and every anecdote has a purpose. I sounds effortless but I bet she’s worked a LONG time to create that impact.

Some other examples:

– A successful marketer brands herself on her personal story, from fumbling start-up to confident international success (and a bank account that’s growing along with her business).

– A consultant brands himself by his experience in an unusual occupation that seems completely unrelated to his present field… until you learn the whole story.

That’s REAL Branding

These business owners feel comfortable sharing their strengths and claiming their bragging rights. They haven’t gotten hung up on colors or catchy slogans; in fact, you’d be hard-pressed to find logos or slogans on their websites or even business cards. Their brand is about recognizing who they are.

The New Marketing Branding Strategy of the Future – NSP (Need Selling Proposition)

In the early 1940 a new marketing concept that was first proposed by Rosser Reeves of Ted Bates & Company. This theory states that campaigns that make unique propositions to the customer will convinced them to switch brands. This is a very logical way of thinking. Today the term is used in other fields or just casually to refer to any aspect of an object that differentiates it from similar objects. These UPSs was used as a basis for their marketing campaigns by many businesses.

Emotions (with logic of course) are an effective marketing strategy for the purpose of shifting consumer buying trends. It is known that some people buy emotionally and justify it with reasons. The Use of emotional appeals in the advertisements is sometimes known as emotional selling proposition (ESP). This theory has evolved in the 60’s. Since then much other marketing branding strategy has appeared; OSP (organization selling Proposition), BSP (branding selling), MSP (me selling – putting the consumer in front) and in 2000 there was HBP (holistic buying).

All these theories are very diversified much similar to the human condition. There is no one why of branding you products or services, it depends largely on the potential consumer profile. But with all these branding strategy there is one common thread. They all address the consumer needs (N). So in this respect if you can tap into your potential client need you can develop a compatible marketing strategy to fit your market.

Today marketing experts say that you have to have one strong brand name, but your market has different needs that are changing with time. NSP (need selling Proposition) allows companies to be more flexible with their branding and marketing thus encouraging companies to always know their customers. Need (N) are the bases of all human actions, whether it be the need to eat, drink, love, accumulate knowledge or just have fun. If you are acting in a certain way it is because you want to fulfill a specific need at that moment that will change the minute it is met. Most needs are spiral shape action where they need to be met again in the future, near or far and not always in a same way.

By knowing this we need to change our branding and marketing strategy as often as our consumers changes their needs. So we can maintain the loyal base that our brand is based upon. Marketing strategy has changed through the years, people have changed as much. NSP is the future of selling.

Internet Marketing Branding – Unlock the Secrets of Internet Marketing Branding

What would it be like to be a master of internet marketing branding? Well, imagine you’re Apple and people line up for days to be the first to buy your new product. Or, picture yourself as the CEO of Google, your brand synonymous with the best, most trusted service of its kind. It can be yours when you unlock the secrets of internet marketing branding.

Secret#1 – It’s all branding

In all my years of marketing and business development, branding is one of the most commonly used and widely misunderstood concepts out there. Clients and colleagues have asked what can I do to enhance my brand. Here’s the fact, it’s all branding. There is no one thing that can magically improve or change your brand. Both online and offline, it is everything you say to your staff, your clients, your suppliers and the public. With over 80% of the public using the internet prior to making a purchase, understanding the impact of digital media is crucial to you and your brand.

Secret#2 – Manage your brand or it will manage you

Branding actually starts before any sort of marketing happens. It’s the nerve center of your organization and your business plan. People and business structures make up the organs and bones and your brand impacts all of the communication and interaction. Hear this loud and clear, you need to manage your brand internally and externally. One final thing, you brand is not an edict from the top. It is cultivated, nurtured and nudged to get as close to your vision, realizing that you may need to adapt, too.

Secret#3 – Get input from your customers

One of the most powerful aspects of internet marketing branding is the opportunity to engage your customers and gauge how you are being perceived. Experts agree that you need a blog or some other way to invite feedback from your audience. A word of caution, don’t whitewash responses. Everyone knows that nobody is perfect, so don’t pretend to be.

Another powerful way to get input from your clients is to use your online database (create it now, if you don’t have one; AWeber is a good place to start) and create a survey. Imagine hearing from your most loyal customers exactly what is working and what can be improved. That’s precisely what you can get with a well constructed survey. For a free and relatively robust service, check out Survey Monkey.

Secret#4 – Show the personality behind the brand

Have you noticed that I’m not recommending a robotic, “We are the greatest ‘X’ business in your area; you’d be crazy to go anywhere else,” type of brand. Let your personality show through. Your company has a personality and so do the principles. Tell the world and let them see what you are all about. Using video in your internet marketing branding campaign is a fantastic way to show the human side of your company and to give your clients even more to relate to.

Secret#5 – Consistency, congruency, cohesion

I’m going to circle back to general brand advice. You can’t afford to take chances when developing what will become the defining characteristic of your business. When I work with my clients on branding, I make sure they understand that they need consistency, congruency and cohesion in the messaging. Consistency means all of the channels; internal and external, online and offline, written and spoken, all come from the same core principles. Can you picture saying you’re cutting edge and having website from 1984? That’s an example of incongruency. Are there any message like that in your current communication? When being customer friendly and open is part of your vision for your brand, your internet marketing branding better include some social media and other web 2.0 outlets. And finally, to get cohesion, make sure that everyone knows exactly the direction you’re nudging the brand so that they can all lean into it together.

Internet marketing branding is a blessing in the ways that it lets you get your hands and mind around your brand so that you can share it with your customers. When you’re not using it correctly, it’s a curse. Picture your ideal brand. How do your team members act? What do your customers experience? What do you get to do? Now, how close are you?

Internet Marketing Branding – Three Tips to Build Your Authority With Your Blog

Being successful in online marketing has become harder and harder in the last years, since the number of acknowledged experts and gurus grows at an exponential rate. The only way to find a place for your business in this jungle is by branding yourself and your company.

One of the best instruments to do this is a blog. With little or no effort you can easily verify that any so called “guru” has not only web pages offering his products and his coaching, but also a blog, on which he publishes free content and keeps his audience updated on the latest news concerning his business, his products and, in a more general way, what’s happening in his field of expertise.

In simple words, a blog is not only a mean to communicate and share, but also a way to build authority and brand.

Here are three tips you can apply to strengthen your position and your authority on the marketplace.

1) Be authentic and spontaneous
Write about you, your passions and interest. A good idea would be adding the story of your life. Help your readers connecting with you.

2) Clarify your purpose
About page, write down what are you doing this for, what you want to achieve. Specify your goals and the means you’re putting in place to reach them

3) Collect your branding weapons
Collect the links to all your main pages on social bookmarking sites and all your author pages on article directories. Create a press room page collecting your press releases and news. Collect a copy or a link to all the articles you publish outside the blog. With these tools you will make your blog a strong point of reference for your image and brand.

These are three of the main strategies I learned to improve the authority status of my blog.