5 Keys to Branding For Small Business Success

Branding represents a tremendous growth opportunity for any type of small business owner, including entrepreneurs, independent professionals, and especially “thought leaders” such as speakers, coaches, trainers, and authors. So, why is branding such a confusing topic to so many?

What’s So Great About Branding?

Well, for starters, most owners think that branding is about having a logo, perhaps a tagline, a website, and anything else you can see. Branding, however, goes much deeper than this, beyond what the eye can see. When done correctly, it can place your product or service miles ahead of the competition and breathe new life into your business. Owners are always looking for an edge and the “visual stuff,” quite frankly, is not going to bring home the bacon. But, when done correctly, branding paves the way for rapid sales growth.

So, what exactly does it mean to “brand”? And does it require a lot of time, money, or energy?

Branding, in a nutshell, is about promising an undeniable experience to your customer. And, in the process of doing that, making sure your customer gets instant recognition of that promise and how your brand will benefit them.

Branding allows us, as owners, to stand out and get noticed in our marketplaces by differentiating our products or services in a distinctive way. We can say, “I’m different” and really mean it, demonstrate how we’re superior to other alternatives, and ultimately make a bold promise to the customer about what we can be counted on to deliver. Through effective use of the English language, we can attract even more customers by putting out a brand message that connects, engages, and moves people to take the actions we want them to take.

As consumers, we have thousands of choices across an array of products and services all over the globe. Our ability as owners to get noticed and preferred by the people we wish to sell to as if we were recommended by a trusted friend is our end goal.

While it seems that many owners are doing some, if not a lot, of marketing by creating websites, utilizing social media and other business-building tools at their disposal, they are also neglecting the use of branding as a sure-fire way to help get new customers, increase sales, and improve cash flow. It kinda doesn’t make sense, right?

Learn more at our free webinar!
Join Gerry for a free live webinar on June 23! “Brand Like Your Life Depends On It!”

Why Isn’t Every Owner Branding?

So, why isn’t every small business owner branding and how is that good news for you?

The answer is one of the basic reasons so many of them fizzle out and ultimately fail: lack of knowledge.

Specifically, lack of how branding works, why it’s crucial, and a general misunderstanding of the vital role it plays to not only keep your business viable but contribute to its success.

The good news is that as owners, we face sales and cash flow issues every day and branding is a critical tool in our “customer acquisition toolkit.”  Reprogramming our mind to focus on how branding can change the trajectory of our business is often all it takes to build the confidence you seek to overcome those issues. The even better news is that many owners are still not cashing in on branding (and perhaps never will) so by utilizing this tool you have a golden opportunity for mega impact than those not willing to get on the band wagon.

Making sure you avoid the pitfall of believing that branding is reserved for corporate brands with big names and giant budgets, and not underestimating the power of a powerful brand, you can still mirror similar success for yourself.

Now, I know that may sound pie-in-the-sky-ish. However, the sky’s the limit if you know how to create a strategically-based powerful brand.

Here are 5 Keys to Branding Success for Your Business

1.  Strong Brand Purpose Statement

Successful branding starts with establishing an inspiring, underlying purpose for your brand.  A well-crafted vision and mission statement that connects with your core audience on a deeper level can motivate them to purchase your brand.  Every component of your brand stems from it – a call to action for exceptional performance consumers will fall in love with.

2.  Clear Differentiation

Creating a distinctive brand that offers something distinctively beneficial to your customer will generate more sales. This allows you to be, do, and say something different so you are seen as the preferred choice. It means you can avoid being perceived as cookie-cutter, rubber-stamped, or carbon-copy in an era where consumers want unique, fresh, and original.  It also means later on you can present your brand “marketing content” in a manner that screams how you are different and better.

3.  Unrivaled Value

Great brands like Nike, Amazon, and FedEx market and sell “me-only” value. The allure of what makes your brand innovative and the ability to say to your market you offer something others can’t (i.e. they can imitate but cannot duplicate) are incredible draws.

4.  Irresistible Promise

Everything you want someone to buy is captured in your brand promise statement. Although telling consumers about the product or services you provide is great information to share, this is not what they want to buy per se. All you want to tout are mouthwatering benefits, staggering value, and outstanding, desired customer outcomes that make a heart-connection, not a head-connection, for rapid sales to occur.

5.  Compelling Message

If there is any step in your branding you don’t want to gloss over is your messaging. Is it engaging or dry and boring? Does it send a lightning bolt to the heart of your targeted buyer? Your message is how people connect with your brand so you’ll want to be as emotionally-based and value-driven as possible. With the objective to load up your messaging on any communication platforms you choose (i.e. websites, social media, videos, etc.), you’ll find attracting buyers, getting leads, and more conversions easier and a lot more fun.

Are You Utilizing the Power of Branding?

Why not?

I truly hope that you’ll consider branding so you can join the many small business owners who are getting more customers, increasing sales, improving cash flow, and growing their bottom line.

I’d love to hear your questions and comments about creating a strategically-based powerful brand. Please respond in the comments and let’s keep the conversation going.  I hope you’ll connect with me via email Gerry@dare2bdifferent.net.

The #1 Key to More Sales

jana-keyWhether you’re a coach like the students and many of the clients I work with, or if you have a service-based or a product-based business, there is one thing that will often keep you from making all the income you could, and having to put a lot more time and energy into your marketing, resulting in burn-out and frustration.

What is it?



The “I can help anyone with their problem” mindset.

Let’s say you’re an auto mechanic. You CAN most likely help everyone with car problems, right? But so does every other car repair shop in the city, so why should they choose you?

jana-megaphoneMany people compete on price, making them struggle to make enough money. Not a great solution.

Some people will shout “I’m the best!” from the rooftops. People don’t really believe you.

So what can you do to stand out from the crowd? It’s so simple, but so many businesses resist doing this…


Yes, you heard me.

Look at the difference between these two examples (both from my real life as a health coach):

1.       Hi, I’m a holistic health coach. I use nutrition to help people with migraines, digestive issues, chronic pain or other discomforts in the body. If you want to feel better, come see me.

2.       I help busy, stressed-out professional women with 5+ days of chronic migraine pain per month get control, reduce or eliminate the pain for good, and get their life back. Who do you know with chronic migraines?

Which one is most direct and compelling? The second one, right? Now, I had people come up to me and say:

“I don’t have chronic migraines, but I have chronic digestive issues – do you work with that?” – YES

“I don’t have migraines but I do get almost daily stress headaches – can you help?” – YES

“I have chronic food allergies – do you work with those?” – YES

So while my message had one single point of focus, others would come to me with different issues and I could decide if I could help on a case-by-case basis.

Nice, right?

jana-doorBeing specific is the key to getting clients coming to YOU.

So, going back to that auto mechanic I mentioned earlier, I’d find out where their strengths are. Maybe they hold a unique certification for All-Wheel-Drive vehicles, or maybe they can boost engine performance or gas mileage in ways others don’t. So, do they stop serving all customers? That’s a great question.

The answer is yes or no.

Yes: If you want to be known as a generalist who has a side specialty of boosting Japanese engine performance, then you can still market generally, as well as in that niche.

No: If you want to be seen as THE true expert in your field, and have all the generalists sending clients to you, then you would ONLY work on those jobs. Of course, until you have enough of them, you’d do both, but then cut back on the general as the specialty work comes in. Then you can also charge more money for what you do, because you’re the best in the area. They will happily pay more money to work with you, as long as your work is really top-notch and your customer service is excellent.

See how that works? You get to choose.

The next step is bringing them into a conversation where you can decide if you are the one to help them, and I’ve developed a system for that which I’ll be sharing on Social Buzz Club, called More Sales, No Selling. If you’d like to get clients asking how they can work with you before you offer them anything, be on that free call! Sign up here: http://goo.gl/bb5T8l

There are a few steps to having a really powerful conversation with a prospect that draws them in, and gets them to ask “How can I work with you?” before you even offer them a program or service.

Want to learn about the #1 Key to More Sales?
Join Jana for a free live webinar on May 12! “How to Sell Without Selling”

I’ll be sharing a lot of info on the call, but let me share one key to spending LESS time on conversations and getting more sales:

Don’t talk to everyone.

jana-networkSee how this kind of goes back to what I mentioned before about specializing? It’s the same here. In order to thin out the prospects to those who need and want what you offer and are ready to take action to work with you, you use a qualification process by using a questionnaire.

You can either send them a list of questions by email, or you can send them to a questionnaire on a service like Survey Monkey (www.surveymonkey.com), and find out a bit about what problem they are trying to solve and what they want instead. Be sure to get their contact information too. You can ask what you need to in about 7 – 8 short questions, with contact info being the first 3 – 4. You can also ask a qualifying question like: “On a scale of 1 – 10 with 1 being ‘I don’t really care’ and 10 being ‘I HAVE to find a solution now’, how important is it to you to solve your issue?” (or ask about reaching their vision).

jana-headphonesNow you can choose to spend your conversation time with people who really need and want a solution. Now, this doesn’t always work with every business, but I would bet you can find a way to make it work with yours. If you have trouble, email me and I’ll help you find a path to success.

Again, join me Thursday 5/12 for my live webinar where I’ll be sharing the details on how to have a powerful conversation. You can sign up here: http://goo.gl/bb5T8l.

I hope to talk to you on the call!



How To Profit Through Speaking

tonyahofmannI run into people all the time who have the same questions:

  • Can I really be a speaker?
  • How do I perfect my presentation skills?
  • Can I really make money as a speaker?

So, here are the answers for so many of you: YES!!!

The Bottom Quarter of Your Audience

Anyone … I mean ANYONE, can be a speaker. If you really have a desire to help people and to change their lives, businesses, families, health or whatever, then you can be a speaker. Get over that you want to be like Tony Robbins or Oprah Winfrey and just be yourself. In all scenarios when you speak, there will be about 25% of the people who automatically don’t understand you, don’t get you, and just don’t like you. STOP focusing on that bottom percentage because in reality … YOU don’t like them either!

The Cream of the Crop Audience Portion

This was so hard for me to get over because I was so focused on getting everyone to like me that I completely missed the point: the top 25% of the people LOVE you! They love everything you say; they “get” you; they adore you … focus on them!


The Gold is in the Middle!

Now, what most people do is they ignore the left over … the 50% who haven’t decided or need more information or time to decide which camp they want to jump into. So, bring those people into your data base, social media and keep the conversation going until they decide to opt-out and go away or buy from you. By the way, never look at who opts-out! Focus on the positive and the amazing people who are your community and want to be a part of your community.

Connection Over Perfection

Please stop trying to perfect your presentation skills and, rather, just get really good at connecting with the audience. If you have a perfect presentation and get a standing ovation, then you messed up! Yep, If I get an audience who jumps on their feet, I know I didn’t connect with them enough. I want them, rather, in their thoughts, filling out forms and I want them running over to me to create momentum in their lives. Not to buy a book because they think I’m “awesome” but because they know I can help them make a huge impact in their business and help them go out and change lots of lives. So, stop perfecting and just start changing lives with your words. Get used to tweaking and improving but never, ever, to perfecting.

Speaking to Sell

To make money as a speaker these days is different than it was ten years ago. Now, speaking is just part of your marketing for your business. There is some philanthropic speaking where you just give back but, for the most part, you are looking at driving those in the audience to something they can buy into. In reality, there is no way in thirty to sixty minutes on stage you can change those people’s lives forever. They MUST go further with you which means your sales offer. So, yes, six and seven figures a year is not only reasonable but a must to really make an impact and change lots of people’s lives with your message.

A Basic Blogging Configuration in WordPress

If you’re planning to blog in WordPress you want to get plenty of circulation for each post.

One of way of doing so is to use a 3rd party service such as Hootsuite, though if you have Jetpack installed you can configure it so you can post to six different social media sites at once.

The first step is to connect Jetpack to your blog.


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