Who is Your Villain?

The common enemy you and your audience are against.

November 16, 2020

Personified villains have hilariously made an impact on advertising. Think of character's like Mayhem, the chaos-curating nemesis of Allstate Insurance and their members. Or Mr. Mucus, the scumbag jabronie who gets his ass kicked by Mucinex on the regular.

What's the point here?

Your audience is your hero and heroes do their best when they fight a villain. This villain stands for everything your hero doesn't, they are at ends with each other. If you can identify this villain, you can give your hero tools to defeat them (products, services, training, etc.).

Who is your villain?

More you say?

One Cliché at a Time

Why your startup's tagline sucks and how to fix it.

3.3.2020

Saving the world, one (blank) at a time.

Are you really? What is your metric for doing so? How are you different from companies x, y, and z that are also saving the world, one (blank) at a time? Lastly, what good does it do for me, your intended customer?

You weren't thinking of that when you first wrote that tagline, were you? Probably because it's bullshit and it's not really why you're in business. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying you don't care about whatever cause you want to help, but if this phrase has crossed your lips in trying to build your brand, it means you are not diving deep enough.

You are choosing to piggyback off a phrase that has no intrinsic meaning other than being a cliché that won't offend anyone.

You can do better. You and your brand are worth more than a worn out phrase void of passion.

How would you fix it? Take a look at some of the best taglines ever written:

Think Different.

Just Do It.

Belong Anywhere.

Open Happiness.

What do they have in common? They're simple, they break from convention, and they encourage the user to be something more. To be more creative, to be a champion, to feel secure, to be happier. These taglines don't impose the idea that a user needs your company, they inform the user that this company has a shared aspiration whether they use their product or not.

They're not salesy, they're not imposing, and they are not trying to make it about themselves. These taglines are calls that signal the user to a new adventure.

You want people to be inspired by your tagline? Don't settle for cliché bullshit. Dig deep and think about how you can encourage a user to be something they never thought they could have been. Most importantly, do it in a way that brings your unique flavor to it.

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Who do you want to help? | Software Branding

Positioning your software to be impactful.

1.12.2020

Softwares can help a lot of people in many different ways. Which is another way of saying, there is an infinite number of replacements for your product. Venmo does the same thing as Paypal, Mailchimp does the same thing as SendGrid, Freshbooks does the same thing as Quickbooks, and Notion does the same thing as Asana.

How do you stand out? You decide to help someone specific.

If your software can help anyone, then you have your pick of the litter and can make the decision to build something special for someone.

"But won't I get bored or lose the opportunity to expand?"

Doubtful. There is so much hidden need for specific user groups that the list of new features and ideas to make your ideal user's life easier are endless. Plus, you can always expand once you've exhausted your initial market or duplicate your tech for another market with slight modification.

Doing so makes you irreplaceable, makes it easy to market and sell, and makes it easy to build an awesome brand. Why? Because you are able to focus rather than constantly chasing shiny objects.

It takes courage, but if you can answer the question, "who do you want to help?" Building your brand will get immensely easier.

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