Episode 11: 3 Signs You’ve Got a Boring Brand
Episode 11: 3 Signs You’ve Got a Boring Brand
Episode 11: 3 Signs You’ve Got a Boring Brand
When you’re trying to attract clients online or use social media, you’ve got to show up powerfully. No matter how much natural charisma you have, if your brand isn’t showing up online to reflect you at your best… you’re costing yourself big-time.
In this episode, you’ll discover:
- The simple exercise that can help make your brand much more irresistible!
- The surprising element you may need to add to your brand message to attract the clients you want.
- Why giving more may backfire, and where to draw the line to truly serve.
03:40: Pamela talks about the signs of a boring brand and gives you an exercise to help you juice yours up.
11:40: Dive into the surprising element that I believe everyone needs to add to their brand to attract clients that they want.
16:55: Discover why giving more may backfire as part of your brand message and where to draw the line in order to serve people
Episode 11: 3 Signs You’ve Got a Boring Brand
The True Definition of ‘Branding’
You’re listening to ‘A Profitable Impact.’
Because you’re so close to your brand and your message. It can be difficult to see when you have some of those signs of a boring brand in these tips and what the exercise that I’m going to suggest. You’re going to get an opportunity to add sparkle to your brand and uplift it so that it becomes naturally more appealing.
Welcome to ‘A Profitable Impact,’ where every single week we help coaches healers to expand their reach, to increase their impact in the world and to be well-paid for their extraordinary skills and talents. My name is Gene Monterastelli, and I am the lead coach of Pamela Bruner’s Impact Accelerator coaching program. Please welcome my friend, my colleague, and the CEO of Attract Clients Online, Pamela Bruner. How are you doing, Pamela?
Great. And I’m so excited that today we get to talk about branding.
Yes, it is something that you and I spend a great deal of time talking to our clients about because it’s such an important vital thing in communicating with our target market so the world knows what we have to offer.
As we have this conversation today, if you recognize the fact that your brand isn’t as strong as you would like it to be and you’d like to be communicating in a more clear way so the people you’re talking to know exactly how you can help them and how you can make transformation happen in their life, we’d really encourage you to set up a free coaching call with one of our coaches. All you need to do is go to BookMyBreakthroughCall.com. That’s BookMyBreakthroughCall.com. You can get on one of our coaches calendars, and you can have a really dynamic conversation to ensure that you’re communicating in a way so you’ll resonate with your exact right perfect client for you.
Now, Pamela, before we jump into this conversation, I think it would be really useful if we define our terms. Like if you say a “logo,” everybody knows what a logo is. You say a “tagline,” people probably know what a tagline is. But when you’re talking about “branding,” I think it’s useful for us to kind of get everybody on the same page. When you use the term “branding,” what do you mean?
I love the definition of “branding” given to me by a friend of mine, Re Perez, who runs a branding agency. And he said, “A brand is a desired perception.” The brand lives in the mind of your clients. And so it’s not your logo. It’s not your colors. It’s not even your business name. Although we sometimes use those things as synonyms for “brand,” they may be a part of your brand, but the brand itself is a desired perception. It is what happens when people think of you. And so, when we look at big brands, if we look at brands like Starbucks. Starbucks built the brand, not on coffee, but on being a third place, something that was not home and not work, but a third place to go. When we look at a brand like Harley Davidson, it’s not about motorcycles, it’s freedom of the open road, and there’s a very strong brand character around it.
So, what can the branding of these big brands do for us? And today in this episode, what I want to do and what I want to help people with is an exercise to make your brand both more irresistible. And I believe more authentic to you. Talk about an element that you may need to add to your brand message that is surprising in order to attract the clients you want. And why sometimes giving more as part of your brand may backfire and where to draw the line so that you actually really truly serve people.
That’s awesome. I think that it’s just really great for us to just dive in and think about what are the things that we can do to make it easier for us to communicate ourselves.
3 Signs of a Boring Brand
First, let’s talk about the signs of a boring brand, because that’s going to lead us into some things that we can do to juice things up. So, one of the things that makes a boring brand is when it’s focused on the wrong thing. So, one of the wrong things is your modality. Whether you are a coach, whether you are a healer, you know, we’re both EFT practitioners, Gene and I, and while certainly tapping and EFT is part of what we do, at least in my case, I’m a business coach. I don’t lead with my modality. Business is not my modality. If you’re a coach, don’t lead with coaching. If you’re a healer, don’t lead with healing or quantum touch or whatever it is. You lead with, instead, a result. But the process of the modality is usually only interesting to you.
And it’s funny you say that, Pamela. I have a client of mine actually who (we had met at a networking event here in New York) works in the financial district. Certainly not a very woo person. Tapping is certainly not something that is inside of his normal expectation. But we were talking about taking action and how he could be more successful in taking action at the beginning of every single day. We had a sales conversation. We had a VIP day to start. We had a session, and in the middle of our second session, so we’ve been together for almost seven hours, I’m like, “Okay. So, I want to tell you about this thing called tapping,” that had not come up at any point in the sales process and even in the beginning of the work, because he did not care about the modality. He cared exactly what you’re talking about: He cared about the outcome, and that’s the reason why we were having the work that we were doing.
Love that as an example of how to get a great client, and it’s not based on your modality. The second sign that you have a boring brand, or the second place that you may build a brand that’s not potentially as interesting, is building it around you. Now, there are certainly personality brands and there are Charisma-based brands and those are built around a person. But for most of the transformational entrepreneurs I know, they’re not building it around themselves, they’re building it around helping their clients. But you may be putting yourself too much at the center of your message. For example, if you’re sharing your credentials and your training and all of the things you’ve been certified in and, and, and that’s the brand around you, and there is a statement about branding that is “no one cares about you until they know that you care,” or “no one really cares about you until they know what you can do for them,” which is more again about the result.
And it’s interesting. Like, there are really successful personality brands, but almost every single one of the personality brands. When you think of someone like Tony Robbins or Oprah Winfrey, they didn’t start as personality brands. They started as result brands that as time progressed their status, their influences, they did that successfully became more and more to the fore and it evolved into a personality brand. So, it’s possible for us to land in that place, but it’s really difficult for us to start in that place.
Exactly. And the third sign that you have a boring brand is, if your brand is either inaccessible or too bland. So, it makes sense that we look at a brand and say, “it’s bland, therefore it’s boring.” But I remember when I first started my business, one of the concerns that I had was, “I’ve got to be careful not to say anything that might offend anyone.” The thing is, if you’re not offending people, or at least you’re not drawing a line and pushing some people away because they’re not interested in what you have to offer, then you won’t have people who are interested in what you have to offer. You have to be pushing some people away to have others be pulled towards you. So, is your brand too bland? Is your brand inoffensive as vanilla pudding? That’s not going to be a good thing. And I’ll talk in a few minutes as I get to the surprising element you may need to add to your brand, how you make your brand accessible, and what’s the difference between an inaccessible brand and an accessible brand.
And I think it’s really important what you’re pointing out there. The word I often use, Pamela, is “galvanizing.” Like, we want someone to have a response to us. And I oftentimes think of its biblical quote, but it’s something that’s really kind of funny. It’s like be hot or cold lukewarm. I spit you out of my mouth. Like things that are lukewarm, just get ignored. We want to be making someone make a choice when they hear about us, either taking a step closer or taking a step away because the people who were pushing away, we’re probably never going to resonate with us anyway. So you might as well claim who you are in a clear, distinct way so people can understand where we’re coming from. Right?
Love that. And in fact, the word lukewarm has that connotation. When somebody says lukewarm, that immediately says, I don’t care about this. It does not matter to me. It is of little importance to me. So let’s talk about the simple exercise that can make a brand more irresistible. And this exercise is simple, but it is not easy. I got this from a friend of mine Merissa who runs a great branding company. And she suggests that you pick three words and only three words to describe your brand. And when you pick three that are a little bit distinct from each other, what you end up with is a bit of triangulation between those three words. So for example, one of my words is classy and another word is authentic. And often when you think of authentic, you could pair authentic with down-home, casual, or rustic.
None of those words are good matches for me, either from a personal physical, how I show up or just from the materials that I share. Classy, however, puts authentic in a completely different light. So you can see how I’m already beginning to triangulate with two of my three words. And then when you add a third word, you’re going to try to triangulate further. And I want to be careful sharing a lot of words here, because this isn’t about you taking my words. Although you’re welcome to if they’re appropriate for you. This is about you going, “what are the three words that really define how I show up?” They define how I show up physically, how I present myself, what I wear, what the colors of my website are. What’s the imagery that I use? You know, in working with one of our clients, Jean, I looked at her new website and I said, “wow, the imagery on that, this is beautiful. It looks like high-end jewelry or Rolex watches or something like that. Like it’s really beautiful, high-end imagery.” And that sets a tone for her brand. Now that’s not the only way to do it. It’s not necessarily the right way to do it, but it’s the right way for her to do it. So I’ll ask what are the three words.
And so when you hear Pamela say that, take a moment really think about what are the three words that make sense to describe the way that you like to show up with the world as yourself as part of the work that you do and recognize that this is an exercise that we do, something like this, that when I’m wrestling with a process like this, I’m going to sit down with a piece of paper and I’m going to give myself some time and I’m going to do it in a place that I normally don’t do my regular work at my desk and give yourself not only a chance to think about it now, but to create some space and really unpack it in a way that gives you the opportunity to really resonate with who you are and how you show up in the world.
One tip about picking those three words is that if you try to pick three words, you will almost always end up with words that do not satisfy you. But if you write down a list of 10 words that it might be, and then you start eliminating them to get to three of your best words, you’re probably going to end up with words that satisfy you more.
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Secret Element You Need to Add to Your Brand
So, let’s go from there into the surprising element that I believe everyone needs to add to their brand to attract clients that they want. Without this one element or these two elements, actually, I’m going to talk about in a different way, your brand will be boring, or it will not have the attraction that it could possibly have. So one of those elements is vulnerability. And in the branding that I teach in that Gene teaches in our program. We talk about having a vulnerability built into your brand. And so for me, my vulnerability is fear of failure. It is what I personally struggle with. It shows up when I tell stories. And as I share that if that fear of failure, it makes the brand more accessible, it makes the brand, I think, more likable and more easy to relate to. If you show up as a brand that is perfect and that has no vulnerabilities and has no weak spots, it makes your brand inaccessible in there for more boring.
It’s funny you say that the way that we show up in perfectly and how that can resonate, and we don’t want to be unprofessional as we’re showing up, but it’s good for us to show up in a way where we’re showing our true selves. One of the recent podcasts that I released for my business was in the midst of something that was pretty emotional for myself. And as I was hearing what was going on, you could hear it in the timbre of my voice, that I was actually in some distress as I was recording. And I wasn’t wallowing in my pain, but I was saying, Oh my gosh, this is something that is really hard for me right now. And because of what’s going on in the world, I bet it’s really hard for you right now. Let’s see if we can do something right now that is responding to that. So it wasn’t me just saying, Hey, I’m wounded. Look at my giant open wound, but I’m like, Hey, I’m human. And this is what it’s like to be human. And this is how I’m responding to that. And this is how you can respond to it as well. And it is something that resonated really deeply with my audience, because I was not showing up as this Paragon of Virtue, but as a human, that was in the world that is very imperfect at this moment.
One of the pieces of advice that I’ve heard you give, Gene, that I just love is this idea of sharing a vulnerability or a story when you are at least 70% of the way through it or over it when it’s not affecting you at a hundred percent of distress, but only 30% of distress because you’ve worked through the rest of it. And I think that’s a great measure. So when I share a fear of failure, certainly fear of failure has been a theme at various times in my life, but I’m sharing stories that I’ve gotten over and through. So there’s a transformational value to them as well as an accessibility.
Yeah. The work that we share should be useful for our audience. It should not be our therapy.
Well said. The other element that I think you need to add to your brand message, to attract the clients you want is to put an edge in your message. So let’s talk about the different ways that you can put an edge in your message. One of the obvious ways is to use a shock factor. Some people use profanity. That is not part of my brand. I don’t think that’s part of your brand. Some people use like extreme spirituality or extreme, no BS stuff, or they’re they are rude, or they are in your face. Think of Howard Stern shock doc. That is an edge. Now you don’t need to add that. Kind of let me be obnoxious edge to your brand in order to make it interesting. But one of the things to think about is where are you going to go out on the skinny branches? Where is the edge for you? And how far can you push that edge in service of your brand and your message while still being authentic to you?
And one of the places I think that, that I like to show up in that particular way is I like to push the conventional wisdom and the things that have been repeated over and over again, and being able to lean into then said, I am sure you’ve heard this platitude or this idea a million times before. Let me tell you what my actual experiences running a business. Let me tell you what my actual experiences doing transformation as a human and giving myself the opportunity to be an opposition to a commonly held thought. And I’m not being provocative for the sake of being provocative. I never take a stance. I don’t believe, but if I recognize the fact that something that I believe is counter to conventional wisdom, that’s a great place for me to stand out in a great place for me to take a stand that helps you not only to understand something that is a worldview, but who I am. And that’s that embedded into that sense of branding that you know, what a brand is because it’s this idea of what they show up as the places that we take stands that are against conventional norms are the places that we stand out, which are the places that help to define us in our markets eyes.
I love that. You talk about going against conventional wisdom for me, the phrase is myth-busting, but it’s the same kind of idea. It is. Every quote, everyone knows this to be true. Let’s look at why that’s not true. And that’s, that is a fun edge that, while it pushes against established beliefs does not necessarily have to be offensive. And it’s often very, very usefully for your clients.
#1 Trick to Know When to Draw the Line
So let’s talk now about why giving more may backfire as part of your brand message and where to draw the line in order to serve people. And I put this tip in because if there is one thing that I see over and over in the brand messages of transformational entrepreneurs like coaches and healers, is that they tend to want to download all of their knowledge and expertise into whatever they are doing, whether it is a 10 minute Facebook live, a 10-page freebie or a 50-page freebie or short article, they’re trying to give too much. What ends up happening when they do that, and I’m not against giving a lot, but I believe in giving it in bite-sized chunks. So if you have a free offer, if you have an eBook or something like that, and you’re giving instructions to your client in the eBook, and you say, so for the next six months, do X, Y that’s not a useful piece of advice because most people can’t do anything for one month, much less, six months without support. So instead I would suggest that you give them a call to action. You give them something to do that they can do in five minutes, or they can do in the next 24 hours, but something that will produce an easy win. So that’s where giving more can actually backfire also giving more, when you are sharing a brand message in a short video, or in a short article, if you’re trying to give a complete umbrella, look at what you believe and all the things that are possible, you will be overwhelming and you will not be serving as much as if you give them one thing that enables them to step forward.
The other thing that happens, Pamela, a lot of times when we give too much is we end up undermining our own credibility. So you mentioned a moment ago that if we give too much, they’re not going to be able to implement it because they don’t have the support system around them to be able to implement the information. And so oftentimes when we give someone a lot of information, they read through it and they intellectually go, yes, this makes absolute perfect sense. I’m going to go implement this thing then because they don’t have the support system a week later, they’re not doing that thing. And they’re not thinking, boy, I wish I had a support system. And they’re thinking, Oh, I guess that information they gave me, isn’t actually useful after all where the information is not the thing that was insufficient. It was the way we delivered it without them setting them up for success.
And so by giving someone a small bite-sized chunk that they can then consume and do on their own, you’re setting them up for success so that they can continue down the path. And it almost feels counterintuitive that if I’m giving you less, I must be giving you less opportunity for success. But it’s the opposite. When I give you something that is useful, that you can do, I’m actually making it easier for you to succeed. Recently, I was talking to a friend and he made the comment that the bigger, the problem, the smaller, the first step needs to be because we’re going after something large, we want to make sure it is manageable. So we can create that sense of momentum. Developing that relationship with a potential client is the exact same thing. Give them something that is useful, that they can engage with and have success with. So they go, Ooh, I want more of that.
I think that’s absolutely brilliant. So today, as you’re looking at your brand, as you’re listening to this and thinking about your brand and the components in your brand, ask yourself those tough questions. Do I have an edge in my message? Am I sharing my vulnerability? Am I giving too much? And finally, what are my three words to really triangulate so that people get a strong sense of who I am in a short as possible a time?
And so if you’re in a circumstance where you’ve heard the conversations today, it is resonating with you, and you’re still lacking some clarity about how do you articulate who you are and show up in the world and your business. We would love for you to have an opportunity, to have free conversation with one of our coaches about how branding fits into what you’re doing and how you can do it more clearly. All you need to do is go to BookMyBreakthroughCall.com. That’s BookMyBreakthroughCall.com. And you can get on the calendar of one of our coaches and have an awesome conversation about how you can be more clear, more concise with your branding. So you’re really communicating who you are to the absolute right people.
If the conversation we’ve been having today is something that you think that a friend of yours might appreciate another coach, another healer, and other transformational entrepreneur. Please pass the word along to them. This might be the exact piece of content and information that they need right now to make the next step in their business. Also, if you haven’t done so already, we would really encourage you to subscribe to the podcast. In podcasting, subscribe is free. You can subscribe to the show in Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Pandora, Amazon Music, Audible, basically everywhere you listen to audio. All you need to do is search for ‘A Profitable Impact.’ Click, subscribe, click, Follow, turn on the notifications. So each week when new content comes out, you get notified right away. If you have a question, if you have a comment, if you have a topic that you’d like Pamela and I to talk about on a future episode, we would love to hear from you. All you need to do is go to AttractClientsOnline.com, click on that contact link in the form say, Hey, I got a question for the podcast. We would love to respond to that. I’m Gene Monterastelli for ‘A Profitable Impact,’ and until next time, I hope you have an impactful week.
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