Cliche Branding No-No No. 1

A common phrase that you should exclude from your branding.

January 8, 2020

It's hard to understand how some fads become established. Across all levels of business, I've seen a formulaic headline being used in ads, on websites, and anywhere else copy is used.

It goes something along the lines of this:

"Our (insert service/product here), your (insert benefit here)."

Most recently, I saw it in a Hootsuite ad that stated "Our social media tool, your success," to provide a concrete example.

There is something about this that feels off. Partly because it feels like I'm being lead by a carrot on a stick. Use our tool and all of your dreams will come true, they say. The thing is that no one actually believes these kind of statements because they know the real meaning behind them is sales. No one likes to be sold to, it seems needy.

What makes this distaste for a "salesy" ad even greater is when it's used over and over again in the form of a cliché. Think about it, how many times have you seen an ad that touted a similar phrase?

"Our team, your peace of mind."

"Our social media tool, your success."

"Our burgers, your satisfaction."

The list goes on and on and on, and for what? In the hopes that someone is going to feel something from a plug-and-play slogan, they've heard four times in the same day?

This phrase is for companies that don't have anything better to say or the courage to be authentic. Don't let that be you.

More you say?

Scale Down

A counterintuitive way to hone in on your brand

12.4.2019

Most of the startup world is focused on getting bigger, expanding, scaling, and a long list of adjectives all pointing to gaining more.

Unfortunately, this mentality leaks into startup branding efforts as well.

Have more colors, have a bigger logo, more subbrands, more typefaces, more messages. More, more, more, more, more.

The issue with this mindset is that it is the complete opposite of scalable because you are reinventing the wheel every time you embark on a new branding effort.

Ask yourself, what is in the way of us getting our point across and connecting with our tribe? Then get rid of it and cut straight to their hearts.

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It's Not About You

Why building a brand requires you to focus on someone else.

3.3.2020

A brand is not a logo, it's not a product, it's not your reputation, it's not your name, so what is it?

A brand is the gut-feeling someone has toward your business. You make them feel a certain way through your company's behavior, it's appearance, and the experiences you provide.

All of this to say that making someone feel a certain way requires you, the business owner, to stop thinking about yourself and think about how you will impact someone else.

It doesn't matter what you like, what matters is what the person you are making this company for likes.

It doesn't matter if you don't like the name of your company, what matters is how it impacts your user.

It doesn't matter that you don't like your logo, what matters is how easy it is for your ideal customer to recognize it.

You get the picture.

The beauty of this, is that the pressure is taken off of you and your subjective standards, and instead focused on how much you can affect someone else.

It's not about you.

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