Read the Transcript for SE.Club – EP29: The Importance of Building a Brand, Not Just a Startup


TRANSCRIPT: SE.Club – EP29: The Importance of Building a Brand, Not Just a Startup / 9-24-21

[00:00:00] I had the opportunity to meet the CEO or the founder of who told me about his story.

[00:00:11] He was doing about $50 million a year with a convoluted name, uh, around, um, uh, around, I can’t remember his actual name. I mean, he, he couldn’t probably remember it, but it was a long name and he rebranded and the next year they did over $2 billion. Uh, the third example I’ll give you, I should have a third example is that we run vacation rentals in Fort Lauderdale.

[00:00:37] Um, and now in, on, in north Captiva on the west, But we brand our vacation rental. So here’s an example of a business, right? It’s, it’s simply a vacation rental and 90% of vacation rentals, never brand. So if you think about that for a minute, it’s just a business, but what if you did add a brand? What if you did create a brand to that vacation rental?

[00:01:04] And so we came up with the name Victoria Uh, we registered the domain name, Victoria Park dog club. I love the dog club extension just for the record. I used to be the founder and, uh, it works extremely well with some business models and vacation rentals. A dog club domain works very well.

[00:01:22] So we branded it, uh, Victoria And I remember, um, the agency that came in that did the management of the, of the, um, of the vacation rental. And they came in and they said, wow, we liked that. We liked the sign. And by the way, we spend $900 on the side. Insane. Right? Signage is so cheap, ultimately, because if you think about it lasts for 10, 20 years, and yet it’s a very nice sign.

[00:01:50] It sets the tone for the entire building and the branding of that building. And the, the, um, agent says, she goes, you know what, because it’s a club. I think you’re gonna be able to charge a lot more because people understand that concept. It’s not just a vacation rental, it’s a vacation rental, but you also have beach chairs and you have a Tiki hut and you have all these other elements to the building that make it feel like it’s more of a club than just a vacation rental.

[00:02:18] So we branded the vacation rental and it worked very well. Jeff is you’re in, you made it, my friend you’ve made it. I just did a kickoff of why the dip sort of. Um, from, Victoria, you know, a boat and about how the brand building a brand is sort of different than just building a business.

[00:02:43] Uh I’m you’re the moderator today. Jeff, take it away. And I know Olivia, you’ve got a lot of thoughts as well. I’m going to really enjoy this session. Thank you. Uh, thanks Colin. Yeah, this session really was, is Olivia’s, um, valley wick as one of the people behind our branding here at startup club. Um, but also I think, you know, people often confuse branding and marketing and, and what’s the difference between the two.

[00:03:10] And if you Google branding, you’ll find lots of different, um, definitions of what branding is. Um, and so there’s not necessarily a right answer, but in, in my opinion and my experience, I really think that what branding is, is really established. Trusted and consistent consumer expectations. That’s what branding means to me.

[00:03:34] Um, because. That’s what people think of when they think of your brand. You know, it’s all about, you know, we want to dictate what our brands are, but in many respects, you can’t dictate what your brand is. You can do things to steer it in a certain direction and you can do things to be consistent. Uh, but at the end of the day, your brand really is what the perception is of the public.

[00:03:59] What consumers think of your brand. And you want to do things that are consistent with your vision and consistent with the image you want to have to steer those consumers the right way. But in the end, they are as much in control of your brand as you are. Um, and that’s kind of a, just a quick take when my thinking of branding.

[00:04:21] Um, and a lot of it has to do with also having a north star. You know, when I do branding exercises, um, with companies that I’m involved with. I use a lot of philosophies that came from, uh, Donald Miller’s book, building a StoryBrand, uh, which is a great book that I highly recommend, but really when you have that corporate north star and you know what your north star is that informs everything else, that’ll inform your messaging, that’ll inform your marketing materials.

[00:04:50] That’ll inform how your employees talk about your business. So it’s really important to understand what that north star is and have that guide your brand. So those are some thoughts that I have, but Olivia, I want to turn it over to you and then we’ll bring people up on stage and really give you a chance to either talk about your brand and see how well you can convey your brand for your business or your startup, or ask us questions or give us your opinion on what is a brand.

[00:05:20] Um, Olivia I’ll turn it off to you to say a few things. Thank you, Jeff. Um, I think you, you, all you said was like, so on point. Um, but I think it would be great to like bring it down to like simpler words and, and for people that actually don’t know the terms. Um, so I’ll just, I’ll just start by saying, by adding something to what you were saying about what a brand is, basically, from my perspective, I’m a designer.

[00:05:50] So I focus on the people, um, and basically a brand is the human side of your business. Um, it’s, it’s how you connect with them, how, how you make your customer a human and not just a number. So, um, if we, if I start being more, um, specifically with the terms to build a brand, you need a brand strategy and that brand strategy is going to define the foundation of your brand and that.

[00:06:24] Uh, what you do, let’s start by like what you do, who you are, who are you doing this for? Why you’re doing this? Why does it matter? Um, because what you want to do is have a foundation in order to go to that north, like north star that you were talking about. So the first thing to do is basically bring everything down to earth and write down your stuff.

[00:06:53] Like, just know who you are, who you’re doing this for. Why and why does it matter? Like, why is it important? I don’t know if that’s something that, um, makes sense to you all, but like, I see it from a very human perspective. So that’s the most important part for, for brands and my. No, I think that’s great, Olivia, and I’m glad you mentioned, um, that human piece, because when I think of being human as a brand, I think of being authentic and authenticity is, is a critical part of building a strong brand.

[00:07:31] Um, you know, I, I, I used to work for a company called trauma, uh, many years ago, and I’ve written a book about it, but that’s a different story, but trauma was known for making, you know, low budget action, horror films, pretty schlocky movies, but they were very authentic about it in that they never tried to present their movies as academy award.

[00:07:55] We always took the, the business of making movies seriously, but we never took ourselves too seriously and understood the kinds of movies we’re making for a certain audience that likes those campy silly films. And that authenticity really helped build a very strong brand. Cause when people went to see a trauma movie, they knew exactly what they were expecting and in the movie industry, that was very unique back then, because when you think about movies, Just as an example, most people go to see a movie because of the movie.

[00:08:27] They want to see the latest Tom cruise film, where they want to see a movie based on a book that they read. Um, they’re not going to see the movie because it’s from paramount pictures or 20th century Fox, except in really, in my opinion, two rare cases, trauma being one of them. Right. But Disney, you know, Disney was really the first studio to develop a very strong brand where people knew what, especially when it came to family-friendly fare.

[00:08:52] In the early days, people knew that if they went to see a Disney film, it was going to be appropriate for their family. And they would go to see a movie because it was a Disney movie, whether they knew much about the movie or not. And trauma established the same thing when it came to these silly campy movies, people didn’t care what the movie was.

[00:09:09] They knew if it was coming from trauma, it was going to be a certain type of movie. So those are two examples of building a strong brand by being authentic and human as. Olivia said, so raise your hand. If you want to come up and participate in the conversation. We have Victor up on stage before I go to Victor.

[00:09:27] I just want to remind everyone that the serial entrepreneur on club is recorded. This show is being recorded, and you can find this recording and recordings of other shows, which is our website. And if you do come on stage and raise your hand and participate, you are giving us permission to record you.

[00:09:45] So with that, welcome to this. Hi, Colin. Thanks for having me, um, completely agree with what, uh, Jeffrey and Olivia and yourself said. Um, I believe that a brand is an extension of your values as, as a business, even, even if you’re a sole trader, you know, it’s an extension of your values as a person. And that really ties in nicely, um, to the emotional side of things that Olivia veal was saying.

[00:10:17] It’s almost people will use your brand as a reference. To fill that need. And if you’re talking about films to fill that emotion that you seek, you know, be it, uh, for example, you, you, you feel ill. Uh, um, so we work with, with cats. Um, we created this new way of brushing cats, teeth, um, because at the moment too many cats in the states and the United Kingdom, uh, suffer from periodontal disease.

[00:10:47] So if my cat was ill, I, my emotions, my current emotions are worry are, um, I, and I, I’m looking for someone that can betray a trust that can portray a skillset. And that is the type of brand. Those are the values that we’ll look for in a brand. And hence that would make, to make my decision go to one bet over another.

[00:11:12] Um, so yeah, it’s, it’s I just wondered to build on your points really. Um, because yeah, I agree with.

[00:11:24] That’s great Victor, because what you said, um, you mentioned you were looking to align your values and that’s basically what brand, what branding is nowadays. Like people don’t look for quality or, um, innovation, like as, as a thing, that’s not, that’s like a must or a starting point, people now for brands.

[00:11:45] And once it connect with brands that are aligned with their beliefs, what they stand for, um, their values and it’s way more about a personal identity type of thing. Like you wear brands that is going to contribute to your identity and how you want to present yourself in the world. So that’s. Yeah. Um, I guess that’s why you can’t fake it.

[00:12:09] Like, uh, like Colin said, um, if you try and fake or your authenticity, it’s not going to last long. It’s not going to be fruitful. Um, because you, you can’t have a connection. That’s, that’s almost fake. That will stand the test of time. So, yeah. Yeah. Uh, consistency and authenticity are things that are going to create trust.

[00:12:35] So you said you work with cats, so they have at CAAT consistency, consistency, authenticity, and trust. So you can remember how to build a great brand by remembering your cat

[00:12:50] came up with that. I got to write that down. I’m writing it down as we speak. Cheers mate, for you always have the greatest number. Uh, Olivia, I have a question for you. What is the difference between branding and marketing?

[00:13:11] That that’s a tricky question and it’s a good one because there’s a, they overlap a lot and it’s, I think there’s a fine line between them. And I think I can say it as simple as branding is the message, the core of your company, um, applied to everything you’re doing. And then marketing is, um, the messenger.

[00:13:33] You’re your strategy, your tactics, your tools. Um, so it’s it for me is basically that branding is my message and marketing is my messenger to the way I see it as well is that you can create a business and you can make money from that business, but it doesn’t have the sustainability. If you create a brand.

[00:13:57] That creates the sustainability. I guess the question here is, and this is the part that maybe everyone here may be asking is how do we actually do that? How do you actually create the Brent? Um, I can, I can totally ask, um, answer that. I’m sorry. I’m driving as well. Um, so the first thing I would say is a brand is built over the years.

[00:14:24] It’s not a one-time thing is not a short, quick thing. A brand is not a logo. Um, let me just say that right away. Um, a brand is built with your customers at the center point. So you need some experience out there. Um, in the market to start gathering that information and making something out of it. Like you need to listen to your customer, you need to bring something out to your customer for, for them to actually experience your, your company and your brand.

[00:14:54] And then you can start tweaking it. And then you, you, you learn how to like send a better message or sell a better in a better way. Um, so the starting point would be just really, really knowing who you’re doing this for, because you should become like your ideal, your ideal customer’s best friend to a point that you know exactly what they need, how they want to see it, how they want to receive it and all those little details to basically, um, help them.

[00:15:28] Purchase, whatever you’re selling. Right? Um, so once you understand as much as you can your customer, then you can start building a brand because then you have a relationship with them. You build a meaningful relationship and hopefully they become loyal customers because they really understand you. You really understand each other and you’re helping each other.

[00:15:53] Whatever goal they are trying to achieve with your company and your product, your service, and whatever you are trying to achieve with them or through them. If I may add onto that apologies for interrupting. Um, so yeah, to build a brand, it’s, it’s built up with the reactions of every tangible and intangible interaction you’ll have with your consumer and customers.

[00:16:20] So that’s where it would take, um, years really. And it’s easy when you’re a founder because you know why you’re doing what you’re doing, but when. Really understand and think about how you are going to communicate this to people you bring in your other teams and your messaging across all platforms.

[00:16:41] That’s when the brand, I believe all skyrockets and you know it, cause it’s not just you expressing and representing. What did image up to the, uh, your image as a founder, it will be your, your, your employees and your colleagues that will also have to understand that idea. Yeah. I think, you know, it’s, it’s a combination of, of what, what we’ve been saying in that, you know, Olivia’s spot on.

[00:17:06] Um, you need to build your brand to satisfy your customers. You need to understand and look at things from your customer or prospective customer’s point of view, understand the journey that your brand is going to take them on. Um, you know, what. Their pain points. What are the problems they face both the intrinsic, intrinsically and extrinsically, and how does your product or service help them solve it?

[00:17:33] And as important or more important is, what’s the outcome for them and how are you, how is your product or service going to make them feel, um, how is it going to improve their life? And then as Victor mentioned earlier, it’s an extension of your values. Once you understand those things, from your point of view of your customer, what are the values you want to hold true to serve that customer you, right?

[00:17:58] Are you going to be lighthearted and humorous? Is it a serious situation? Um, you know, what’s the values of the brand. That are going to be carried forward. And then that’s going to inform everything that you do. And since it does take time, as Victor mentioned, consistency is really important because people will be confused if one day you’re presenting things in a lighthearted fashion and the next day it’s very serious.

[00:18:24] And the next day it’s something else. You know, you have to be consistent to those values and consistent in really serving the story of your customer. Um, so with that, let’s bring some more points of view from our people on the stage. It’s Joshua, welcome to the serial entrepreneur hour.

[00:18:46] Joshua, if you had something you wanted to add or a question you wanted to ask, just tap that mic to unmute yourself. Hi everyone. I, uh, can everyone hear me? Yeah.

[00:19:02] Um, I am a creative agency owner, and I just wanted to ask, um, in terms of developing a brand strategy for clients, um, what are people’s opinions on say just running the business really well. Um, and having, you know, the brand, um, kind of take on a life of its own in terms of its values, being, uh, kind of derived from the customer experience, uh, versus creating a narrative, creating digital content, and specifically trying to kind of assign a culture and a life, uh, to a company, into a brand.

[00:19:44] So I think that’s a really, really great question, Josh Joshua, and I think, you know, a brand, just like a business is a living, breathing thing. That’s going to evolve over time. And I think you have to do a little bit of both. You don’t want to start with a blank straight, a blank slate and just let your customers let the world out there, tell you what you are no from scratch.

[00:20:08] Right? I think you want to start with a vision that’s based on, you know, what’s the company’s north star, um, who are the target customers as we just talked about earlier. But once you do that and start out, absolutely what you say is true. You need to listen to what the world is telling you. And sometimes that will cause you to reinforce the path you started out on and the branding you started out with, uh, other times it might cause you to take a shift and you might see.

[00:20:41] To pivot a little and take advantage of a different opportunity for the brand because of how you’re actually being perceived. Uh, and that might be slightly different than how you thought you were going to be perceived. But I don’t think you want to start with a blank slate. I think you want to have, um, a direction and that north star, but then also be listening and be aware and be prepared to shift and modify along the way, just like a company’s core values.

[00:21:09] When you talk about internal culture, your core values are something that you don’t decide on day one and they stick that way forever. The core values are things that evolve over time and in the same way your brand can evolve over time. That’s my opinion. Hopefully that was helpful. I think that was a great answer.

[00:21:27] And I wanted to add a little bit onto the. Just by saying like your, your brand, even if it’s a new brand is naturally starting from something. Um, I don’t want to say everyone, but most of the time companies, um, start selling or doing something because they either found like a solution to a problem or they have a dream or a vision of something, um, or they’re innovating in some way.

[00:21:54] So there’s, that’s the starting point. And your why could be that starting point? Just like to be flexible, being flexible enough to transform throughout the years of building the brand. But your why should always be your starting point because that’s also gonna align to your own passion. And like, if you’re the founder, um, you, you have to love what you’re doing or hopefully you do.

[00:22:20] So that’s how you that’s. That would be the. Sorry, go ahead. I’m sorry. I didn’t want to like crosstalk. I just wanted to say I, Stephen Schwarzman from Blackstone had something so amazing to say about this. When he left his first floor from to start Blackstone, he said he’d made millions of dollars for high net worth individuals and companies.

[00:22:46] And when he started Blackstone, he just thought people, of course, they were going to follow the money and he’d been. Uh, their trader that they would follow him, but he said, that’s not what happened. People followed the brand and whether it was chase or whomever he was with before clearly had a bigger brand than him.

[00:23:07] And it took him a few years to figure that out. I’m an agent too. And when I left ICM, you know, I thought, look, I put you on a series and did this. I did that. The people would just follow me to a new agency. You have to create a brand. You have to create something that people feel like, that they can touch.

[00:23:27] They know what it is. It’s seemingly just how people orient. So, I mean, I love that there are roots.

[00:23:37] We lost the Tracy. Well, we’ll come back, but Joshua, did we answer your question or do you have any further thoughts on that? No, I really liked that and it, and I mean, you know, often times we’re a brand, not a logo, but I think, you know, it starts with sort of those initial assets, whether it’s like the retail assets, if you have brick and mortar or branding assets.

[00:24:02] Um, and then sort of the story that unfolds from there can really dictate how people perceive you. Um, I think just the follow up would be, do you have any advice on gathering sort of information and feedback from customers about, you know, how the brand is being perceived? I mean, it can be hard, I think, to be objective in seeing yourself from a bird’s eye view or seeing even, um, You know your clients from the eyes of the consumer.

[00:24:35] So I think it’s just a follow up. Um, are there any, you know, sort of ways and approaches if you’re taking a shift or if you’re reinforcing, you know, a brand, um, how, how to sort of gather that information? Yeah. I think that, you know, we, we live in an amazing age because of social media, because you literally have the opportunity to be a fly on the wall to any conversation.

[00:25:01] So there are a lot of listening tools you can use, um, and different searches you can use to really following here objectively because you’re, you’re not part of the conversation, what people are saying about your brand or your products or your services. So listening, um, listening, uh, without knowing people, knowing you’re listening is one way.

[00:25:25] And then of course, there’s lots of things you can do with surveys, but of course, when you survey something. You know, people answering the survey may say something different than people talking on Twitter when they think they’re just amongst their friends and not really, um, um, thinking they’re answering questions.

[00:25:40] So I think through a combination of both, um, there are a lot of ways now to really have a good sense of what the real perception of your brand is. Olivia, did you have any other thoughts on that? Um, yeah, it’s more like things that you can actually do from a different, not the typical things like the straightforward, um, survey, but, um, sometimes if you, if you ask your current customers to refer you or to recommend you, you can actually see or know, or actually have a glimpse of like, would they actually do that because not everybody is comfortable, um, reassuring companies or brands or even people.

[00:26:23] So. It may not tell you exactly what they think, what they feel about your brand, but it definitely shows you if you’re on the right track or not. If they actually accept, um, to refer you or recommend you some to someone else. Great. Uh, just to just, just to add, just to add on here. Uh, hi. Hi everyone. Just to add on here, uh, this is a stage from India.

[00:26:47] I’m a public speaker and an entrepreneur. So just to add on here, the only thing I think, which will help a brand survive is credibility. So the only way to define credibility is by having a product or a brand, which provides an outcome or a service, which creates an impact to the customer. So if you have a service or a product, which brings a smile to the customer, or gives a value in terms of profit or cost savings, then you develop a credibility which spreads to the word of mouth or through, through, through digital media.

[00:27:18] For you to be able to build a brand reputation and a good Goodwill. So I think it’s all goes down to credibility. Yeah. And that credibility comes from the authenticity we talked about and having that north star, but let’s try to go, um, to Dan next who’s been patient and then after Dan, Angela and Warren.

[00:27:37] So Dan welcome. Thanks guys for having me wonderful discussion. I’d love to add three notions to the discussion if I may please. So the first one is about branding and marketing. The second is about the title of this room. And the third one is what I’ve learned at working for apple. So I have an answer to the previously asked question in my humble opinion to the question.

[00:28:06] What’s the difference between branding and marketing branding is the shop and marketing is how you get people to the shop period. That’s as simple as I can say it, because branding is how the shop blokes, how the sign looks. What’s the product inside, you know, Holly refurbish it, what people work there and all this kind of stuff.

[00:28:27] And marketing is just bringing people to that shop and making them consume. That’s my definition. Second, the title of this room made me laugh because it’s, it’s just, it’s so obvious. And, and I love what you guys are talking about. And I agree with so many things being said, I love it. Um, I actually would probably change the title to build a brand and don’t just have a product because from my humble experience in the last, over 15 years building and cultivating a premium brand.

[00:29:06] Um, I think you have these two types of clients. You have the business guys who have a good vision, a good business, a superior product, great business model. And if you have that bless you well done, um, marketing isn’t that important. And obviously sometimes if your creative director as myself, or have an agency or strategists or whatever, these clients are so difficult to work with, because it’s so hard to explain to them the value of the brand of the marketing, because they’re product driven, the business driven.

[00:29:44] And I think it’s, it’s very important for everyone who’s in the audience to make quickly clear among the experts on the panel, but that you need a business model first, before you can do marketing before you can do marketing strategy before you can build a brand period. Plus everything else that was said before the vision, you know, the product, the strategy, the tone of voice, all these kinds of thing.

[00:30:10] And we often forget that we often forget that social media is a marketing channel and not, you know, not your core business, it’s, it’s bringing people to consume. And I think that’s very, um, important to, to, to not forget these days. And the third notion I want to add is I want to share something from, from my experience.

[00:30:32] So I worked as a senior creative at apple and the global marketing team from 2012 until 2016. Uh, um, we introduced, uh, iPhones, iPads, Siri, apple, watch to the world and, you know, made all these creative campaigns and stuff. And, and, and, and, but that’s another story, but. If there’s one thing I’ve learned there from all this, you know, the team who worked with Steve jobs and all this kind of stuff and how the brand communicates, how the brand thinks and function is, is of course there is a visual language.

[00:31:08] Of course, there are good products. Of course, there are the shops. There is the, the California in it. There’s the sleekness of design. There’s this, you know, everything, there’s the cool headlines. But, but what I’ve learned there is that the very essence of a brand goes way beyond the visual appearance, the words, the images, the videos, the product, and everything.

[00:31:36] And, and, and that is something called a brand. And I think the brand feel, uh, it was mentioned previously, I think by Jeffrey and Victor bless you guys. And I think the brand feel his dad was going to become more important as we go into the new age of branding, advertising, you know, building businesses, whatever you want to call it, because all the social media platforms, they look the same, but the brand feel is that what you can’t copy.

[00:32:05] And my new favorite expression, these days is not unique selling proposition anymore. It’s emotional selling proposition, the way your company, your vision, your brand communicate, empathy that connects with the clients with the consumers. Because without clients, you don’t have a brand full stop. The brand is the marketing is all the touch points with your customer.

[00:32:37] And there’s one little thing I disagree with, whether it was being. I think a brand doesn’t have to listen to all the time to all the customers. I think it’s the brand’s job to be a strong leader and to strongly say this is relevant and this isn’t and, uh, yeah, I can take you then ever. This is done and I’m done speaking now.

[00:32:58] Thank you. Thank you. Thanks Dan, for sharing that. And then just, I mean, I think there’s a little contradiction in what you said too, because brand brand is the brand is more than the shop. Cause apple is a great example. I am not a consumer of apple products at all, but I’m, I am. I know the apple brand deeply and emotionally, as you pointed out, I know the feel of the brand.

[00:33:19] So I think very good points. Thank you for sharing, Olivia. I think you had something you wanted to add. Yeah. Um, I want to be a little controversial here and um, I’m going to disagree with this, uh, with, uh, Dan, I want to say that. You should build a company, a business alongside your brand, because especially nowadays, I think you should always build a business, um, having your customer in the center of everything.

[00:33:52] And the way to do that is by building a brand at the same time, building a brand is like, I’m going to say it again. Just, just to like, be more clear with my, with my point right now is also knowing exactly or the best you can, who you’re doing this for and understanding them to connect with them. So I, I want to say, and in an ideal world, I would say you should build your business and your brand at the same time.

[00:34:22] Thanks, Olivia. And, um, and yeah. Build a brand that doesn’t have a good business model. There’ve been some successful brands that haven’t been successful businesses in terms of awareness and people understanding what they stand for the emotional side. Um, Angela welcome. Uh, just before Angela goes, just a quick point.

[00:34:43] I think what Dan was talking about the brand feel and the order. So I think every band has a particular order around it. So if you see a brand, you feel emotional happiness or the sadness. So what Dan was touching upon, uh, how the customer feels, the emotions relating around it, or the experiences around it will make a brand successful.

[00:35:04] Because with my, with my, uh, I used to work with HP and, and, and what kind of order the customer gets out of the product or the tagline or the experiences around it will make the brand. Uh, I think I completely agree what that’s wonderful. Yeah, absolutely. It’s what we said earlier. It’s about the outcome.

[00:35:22] You’re always selling the outcomes, you know, how are you going to make the customer feel what you’re doing for them? So thank you. So one question to Olivia and Jeffrey, please. Can you name me one brand that is a successful brand without having a successful business, please. According to Casper, there’s one, what’s that if a ghost, the mattress company, they, they have not to my, to my understanding, they not made a profit.

[00:35:50] Um, they’ve been struggling since they go on, since they’ve gone public, they recently went through a round of senior level, um, layoffs if you read the trades. Um, but at the same time, they’ve got a fantastic brand, um, very successful brand, not necessarily a successful business at this point in time. What do you mean by fantastic Brandon?

[00:36:12] Just as in positive image or how would you define. Yeah, I think they have a positive image. I think people believe, believe the products are of a good quality. I think that they’ve established themselves very well as a brand. They’ve done good. A good job of branding

[00:36:31] and many companies establish a strong brand before they have a successful business. It happens and there’s no, you know, there’s no one right answer here. Obviously there are always going to be outliers. Uh, Olivia, and I would say that too. Yeah. I was going to say like, there’s not just one way of doing this.

[00:36:48] Um, I think it goes case by case, and we can all have like a very unique situation where things work, um, when they were not supposed to work or where things didn’t work when there were supposed to work. So it’s just like also like strategy is all about that. It’s just a plan, but there’s always a chance of not working and you have to tweak and then keep working on it.

[00:37:12] And it’s just, again, it’s, it’s not a one way of doing things. So I think all we’ve been saying, um, so far is, is helpful for everyone and we can all get great ideas, um, to start building our brands. So it’s, I think, yeah, just like take the best and try it and see if it works. Okay. Yep. All of the above.

[00:37:37] Thanks Olivia. And thank you, Dan and detached attach. Um, there’s no wrong. These are all good suggestions, Angela. Welcome. The time has come. I’m just kidding. Thank you so much for the opportunity to speak on your platform form. Um, in the startup club, I love this topic and everything that everybody has, uh, been able to add to the topic and you guys are right.

[00:38:01] There’s really, um, not no solid one. Um, to build a brand, but what I have found, uh, we’re working with people, um, who wants to discover their purpose in life and work, um, is that, um, that is the underlying factor when it comes to building a brand, um, it’s really knowing your purpose and why you’re building this business.

[00:38:27] Um, if money is the, is the reason why you’re building a business, um, that’s the fastest way to fail. Um, however, um, you know, anybody can start a startup, right? Anybody can start a business and make a little bit of money, but to sustain that business and scale that business over time, it really takes a deeper level of focus.

[00:38:49] And it really is, uh, discovering and pursuing a purpose to that business. And so it’s really about filling a need in the marketplace, uh, and knowing what it is that your customer needs, because if you don’t know. What the customer needs, then you’re going to be really, you know, throwing, you know, just throwing stuff out there, trying to see what’s going to stick.

[00:39:15] And that’s how serial entrepreneurs tend to work. Oftentimes is really just stowing stuff into the market, trying to find what’s going to stick. Um, Finding the purpose to what it is that you’re doing is another key element to add into your brand. So that way you’ll be able to have a focus and you’ll be able to attract people.

[00:39:38] I believe we live in a time and a, in the age where people want to have purpose to what it is that they’re doing. Matter of fact, there’s so many different studies out there that show that even the most successful people that make the money, why is it that they make the money and they are committing suicide.

[00:39:57] Why is it that they have all of this fame, fame and fortune yet they’re depressed. And one of the key things is that they don’t feel like they have purpose, or they don’t have meaning to what it is that they’re doing, because they were so focused on getting money and they realized that that wasn’t enough.

[00:40:11] So I wanted to add that key element to it. Um, in my bio, I actually have a link to where it’s a free link where you can evaluate yourself to see where you really are. So that way, when you’re building your business, you can really, um, key in and zone in on what’s valuable to you and unreal you helping.

[00:40:30] You’re helping stop it for a moment to uncover that. I know we’ve spoke a lot on this call about, you know, knowing your valleys, but I’ll love to do a survey to see how many people really understand what their values are, how many people really understand what their purpose is. Um, sort of my bio, I have an evaluation form where you can actually unfold that and really look at your life and see how can you attract people to you versus you just simply go on.

[00:40:56] And trying to chase people or chase money. My name is Angela and I thank you for the time on the stage. Thank you, Angela. Thanks for bringing up purpose. Purpose is definitely important. It’s not only important for branding, but internal culture. You know, businesses that have a good culture, they have a clear purpose, and that helps the people in the company and the employees, you know, know that they’re part of something bigger than themselves and know what that, that, that mission is and the purpose of the company.

[00:41:24] So thank you for that. Um, I want to go to Warren next. Sorry to interrupt quickly. Just, uh, there’s a really nice resource called start with the why by Simon Sineck, uh, as the book is, is it really explains well that the points that you’re making. Thank you, Victor. Yeah, that’s a great book. And Simon Sinek actually has some great Ted talks and other videos of him talking about that topic.

[00:41:49] If you don’t want to read the whole book. Thanks Warren. Welcome to serial entrepreneur. Thank you, Jeffery. Um, good call Victor. Absolutely great call actually. Um, and for anyone that’s not seen Simon Sinek’s Ted talk. Um, basically it’s a very simple line. People don’t buy what you do, they buy, why you do it.

[00:42:10] Um, just to resonate there with Angela’s point there about purpose and value and everything else. Um, it’s a really interesting conversation, this, and I’ve spent 30 years doing what I do, um, rustling with the idea and being around amazing brand builders and amazing brands. I’ve worked with the likes of Coca Cola.

[00:42:27] I’ve worked with pasture, any beef there. I’ve worked with chip chips, the lollipop guys based in Barcelona. Um, I’ve even worked with. Uh, back in the day. So brand-building has always been a big part of, of my salesmanship, shall we say, from a marketing or a sales perspective. And I think I came in late to the conversation.

[00:42:48] So please don’t apologize up front if I’m repeating anything. But, you know, everyone’s mentioned really interesting things since I’ve been on the stage. I mean, he attached mentioned about product, which is absolutely key integrity. Um, storytelling is one of those values which really resonates with me.

[00:43:04] And I think brands have lost a little bit of that. They’ve got a bit desperate and certainly in the fashion industry, which is my bank, um, They’ve they’ve renamed from thinking really, really hard about their heritage and storytelling and just executing that and making sure that it’s hits, hits the spots with the customers.

[00:43:23] Um, I think brands are starting to think a little bit more about that and that is going to take time, but there are, so it is really, really complex this whole thing, but I just really, one of the reasons I came up onto stage is just wanting to try and help out anyone in the audience. Really, if they’re struggling with trying to work out their own identity, I mean, obviously this is called build a brand, not a startup.

[00:43:43] And I don’t know how many people in the audience have startups and they’re thinking, well, I’ve got a great product, but I don’t really know where I sit or I don’t know what my values are. And there’s a really great resource, which I’ve kind of used, used it on and off for many, many years. Well, there’s two actually, there’s the customer avatar, which no doubt.

[00:44:00] You talked about previous. And certainly in the fashion industry, whenever we’re creating new collections, um, for, for our, for our customers, our consumers, you know, it’s really, really under, it’s really important that we use the other tile that profiling really as the barometer to make sure that everything is on point, we would literally hold a product up and say, is this, our guy, is this, our girl, is this our child?

[00:44:24] And when you dig really deep into that, you know, you will go into where the girl goes on holiday. What’s her boyfriend’s name? What car she drives, what perfume she wears, what’s her favorite food? You know, what’s a deposed, disposable income look like all those values really are. I kind of pulled together just to make sure you are on brand, which is key.

[00:44:45] Um, and then you obviously execute from there onwards, but the resource that I wanted to shout out to everyone, if something. Brand archetypes. And excuse me, if, if you have covered this, but it’s a really useful thing. If you just put brand arcade. In fact, there’s a, there’s a website called I think it’s called, um, iconic Fox from memory.

[00:45:04] Um, if you go to that website, it basically breaks down. There’s loads of different versions of this, but there’s in essence 12 brand archetypes, and they will range from the outdoor they’ll range from the caregiver, the ruler, the hero, um, the magician, you’ve got the Sage there’s loads of different ones.

[00:45:23] And the great thing about this is when you start looking at your own brand and you start looking at the messaging and the brand voice, um, you’re very quickly understand how brands align themselves to these archetypes. So our hero brand would be someone like Adidas or Nike, you know, it’s all about.

[00:45:42] Bravery and resilience and honesty, and it’s those types of values. And then you’ve got kind of the creator ones, which are more like, um, I think Dan mentioned earlier, worked with apple. So apple would sit in a creator just like Adobe would and just like Lego would. Um, and I just think it’s a really, really useful thing.

[00:46:02] And I think somebody alluded to earlier as brands and as your business develops, those kind of personas do change. They do change because your business will change. It will constantly evolve. But as a rule of thumb, most brands will have 70% as a main brand archetype and around 30% as a secondary one. Um, and I just, as I say, I just wanted to come up just wanting to say that hopefully that’s a benefit to anybody in the audience.

[00:46:30] And then that made a few notes and it helps them along the way, trying to identify themselves. So thanks for listening guys. I love what you’re saying, wearing like that’s great. What you’re sharing is perfectly shown like how important it is to understand your customer. And that’s, those are a few ways of actually bringing it down to earth and creating a profile.

[00:46:52] We call it persona, um, profile in my world. Um, so yeah, the, the brand archetypes and the archetypes, like just the psychology behind everything, which, I mean it, how important should be in your, in your priority list, because we are dealing with humans. So I love what you’re sharing we’re on. So this is amazing.

[00:47:15] I mean, we have so many experts here and, uh, and Jeff and Olivia are experts as well at branding, but I’m going to ask a question of the people on, on stage here, We have a new brand. Uh, we have a new business. We have a new club, charity, whatever you want to call it. It’s 650,000 members strong.

[00:47:40] We’re not just creating a business here. We’re creating a brand. What is one thing that we could do to really establish as a brand versus just a business. And let’s just, if we could go around, that would be great.

[00:48:04] Um, mark is freaking, um, wow. Start Congratulations on that. What I’m saying is you jumped into side of things early or something, but, um, I would say, you know, do what are the. Um, successful entrepreneur, your websites, business websites are doing. I like to, I always like to look at everybody and then just do what I know I’m supposed to be doing along with what they’re doing.

[00:48:31] Right. Uh, and just, just make it all into one of course, you know, memberships or subscription, something along those lines where something recurring, always matters. Uh, education is something that people pay for. Some people pay for the rest of their lives. So that’s definitely a route I would go, uh, some type of membership format.

[00:48:48] And then, um, you know, to consistency in the speakers, you know, of course, a lot of links, a lot of click here to learn more, uh, where you’re not, you know, uh, you or your team or repeating how to do this or how to do that because business is business. No matter what industry you’re in, the principles are, the same strategies are similar.

[00:49:07] Um, so, um, I think just having that, that, uh, a website that’s easily, um, navigate it. What else. Talking to a human being and then having people check out, uh, with their car. But, uh, I think of some more things as I, as I sit here, but for sure, a annual event, a virtual conference, something along those lines where you build enough, some type of anticipation and just riding the waves.

[00:49:34] Congratulations on that, Dawn. I can’t wait to hear what everybody else can add in

[00:49:41] again. Just one more point to add Warren. I think Warren was talking about understanding the customer. I think,

[00:49:52] yeah. You, you went mute for a second. Okay. Sorry. Sorry. I think someone muted me. So, so what, what Warren was talking about? Uh, understanding the customer. I think that’s the, that’s the bottom line and that’s the nail on the head for creating a brand. For example, if you know everything about your customer, what time he wakes up, what are his needs?

[00:50:11] What does he do and what triggers them? What are the emotions he goes. Then you’ll be able to relate your brand to the customer. I think that’s customer profiling is the key. When it comes to building a brand and more information we have about the customer will be able to sell our brand a better. For example, there was an instance, uh, in, in, in, in the market with one of my clients and, and, and, and, and the adult passed away, uh, for a particular client.

[00:50:38] And, and, and the guy was trying to sell some funeral services for dogs and he saw some market. So he understood his customer. Well, his emotions well, and knew what to do, do, do, do about it. So the more you know, about the customer, the emotions and the cycle of, uh, the customer’s life, then you will be able to relate the brand in different parts of his life and be able to sell your product better and make profits.

[00:51:04] So it’s wonderful. I completely agree with you. Thank you. And we attached Warren, did you want to answer a Collin’s question? I saw you flashing there. Yeah. I mean, you guys know how to make a business. Goodness, me. Um, I think, I think generally in more general terms, maybe not so much about startup club, but I think in general terms, we have to really understand why we’re doing what we’re doing.

[00:51:27] Um, and it does go back to that Simon Sinek quote, really, because one thing I’ve learned, I think as I’ve got older, I’ve, I’ve made lots of shit. Excuse the language, Michelle and ladies, uh, I’ve made lots of bad decisions in my life. Um, and for me it’s more about redemption. It’s more about trying to put right things.

[00:51:48] And actually I think that inherited. Drive is, is what keeps me going. It keeps me upfront. It keeps me on point as I’ve used that word earlier, but it keeps me front of mind. And I think with regards to start-up club, you know, you are already doing an amazing job, but someone once said to me, you have to take the money out of your money.

[00:52:08] So, so important for any business obviously as is profitability, but it’s not the be all and end all. And actually, if you can execute on all the other areas, the money comes through anyway. So, but consistency is really, really important. And from a personal perspective, I mean, you know, my industry is, uh, suffered over the last crikey 15 years, I suppose.

[00:52:30] And over the last five years it’s been horrendous and over the line. Two years with COVID, it’s put the nail in a lot of things. And you know, me as an individual, as you say, going back to some of the decisions that I’ve made personally, I have to question myself every single day, why I do what I do. And I know this sounds really strange.

[00:52:48] I’m going to share something here that we talk about, but every single day, I play a record, right? I play music because music is always, always been a massive part of my life. I’m a massive prince financially. And if you look in my bio, there is actually a quote. I’m going to read it out to you because it’s, it’s in bread in everything that I do.

[00:53:08] And the reason why this song is so, so important to me is the fact that the, the, the chorus, it actually breaks down everything that I’m trying to do. And it’s my barometer. It’s my little pep talk. And again, whether or not you’ve got mentors, you know, if you’re a new business, I would recommend mentorships.

[00:53:26] I would recommend surround in your peep as surrounding yourself with the best people you can possibly get in front of. Um, but this song is written by prince and it basically says everyone wants to sell. What’s already been sold. And that obviously is with regards to consumption and everything else.

[00:53:42] Everyone wants to tell, what’s already been told. We’ve all told the same stories. We just got to do it in a different way. Going back to that storytelling. What’s the use of money. If you ain’t going to break them. Which is really, really important because the industry. He is so responsible. It’s the second most polluting industry in the world.

[00:54:01] And there’s $50 billion worth of residual stocks in the world at the moment, which actually from an environmental perspective is 8% of the carbon emissions. And then the last line is even at the center of the fire, there is cold and all that glitters isn’t gold. And the reason why that one is so, so important to me is because generally a lot of people coming into any industry, they see everything as an overnight success.

[00:54:26] And to answer your question, you know, it won’t be an overnight success and everybody needs to be reassured of that, but everyone needs to also understand why they’re doing it, sticking hard, keeping consistent and, and just nailing it. Just executing it and stop talking about it. Just get it done. I’m done talking.

[00:54:45] Like you shared so many good points. And I was going to say too, like just, I would say, um, even though I’m part of the team, I would say just, let’s be really clear on what we’re doing, why we’re doing it. And also what is the benefit that we’re providing the value that we are offering to like the community.

[00:55:06] Um, and because it’s like what you’re saying, we’re in like the money is one thing, but we’re doing this for another reason. Um, and especially because it’s, it’s a community, we should focus on the actual human side of things. Money will come with. Um, customers will come like, and not just any customer, the right people were, will, are going to come to your business.

[00:55:31] If you focus on the people you’re trying to either help or support or whatever you’re doing. And I’m also going to quote someone that we all know, um, I’m going to quote Michael Jordan and he once said, get your fundamentals down. And the level of everything you do will rise. Um, so that’s basically doing the hard work and you’ll see what comes out of that hard mundane work.

[00:55:56] Thanks. So you can’t go wrong. Quoting a prince. Michelle, you wanted to say something and then we’ll go to Daniel. I know we’re coming up on the top of the hour, but I want to make sure everyone gets a chance to speak. No, no, I’m good. I was applauding Olivia Warren, you know, very well said. And I agree with you.

[00:56:16] Like, you don’t have to know all the answers from the beginning, but you do have to have an idea about where you want to build and what, you know, what you want to say, who you want to serve. If you look at it like who you want to serve, then you’re going to come at it from a whole different point of view, rather than just like chasing your competitors, which I don’t believe ever works, or just like chasing pure money.

[00:56:39] Obviously it has to be sustainable, but you know, just, just look at who you’re trying to serve and that will get you so much further. Thank you. Thanks Michelle. Daniel, thanks for your patience. Um, welcome to the serial entrepreneur hour. Um, do you have a question or something you want to. Um, when we say support our customers and support the people that we’re interacting with, I’m saying it’s not emotional support all the customers or anyone that anyone here is talking to them assuming is looking to for some kind of financial gain.

[00:57:12] So I just, when we talk about all these things, you know, I think that it’s just important to be clear that the financial game is ultimately what the customer wants and anyone that we’re going to interact with. So I just, I think it sounds nice to say these things, but I don’t know. I just, I hear these things and people say, well, the money’s going to come.

[00:57:30] And all of that, I don’t know if that’s the foundation that people build great businesses on. I think that it’s kind of, I have an incredible way to make people’s lives easier, or they’re fed up with a problem that people are faced with, but usually it all kind of revolves around. If I go and solve this problem, they’ll make more money.

[00:57:48] I’ll make more money or someone will save money. But, you know, I just, I just had that in my head. I’m hearing all these things and I just want it to put it out there and not sure if it adds value to anybody. No, it does Daniel with that. Thank you for clarifying that. Yeah, I think at the end of the day, it’s all about business.

[00:58:05] And I think when we talk about, um, you know, we talked earlier about the outcomes and, you know, what is it that your product or service is going to do for the customer, how it’s going to make them feel, um, you know, how it’s going to improve their life. And obviously there’s always going to be some transactional, uh, economic basis to that if it’s a business.

[00:58:25] So, so I think, um, it’s a good point that you bring up. Um, Ms. Olivia, I just wanted to add. It’s building a brand is important. And when it comes to business, because you want recurrent customers, you want loyal customers, you don’t just want a one-time buyer. So building a brand is going to help you bring those people in, but also keep them.

[00:58:49] So it’s not about just the, the beautiful part of like connecting with a human is also like keeping them close enough because it’s still a business like you are. Right. So by building a brand, you can actually create, um, a meaningful. Not just a one-time thing, but building a brand. This is as a result of servicing customer spectacularly.

[00:59:10] Like if you have an amazing landing page, great website, great marketing, collateral, everything you need to do in order to draw someone in, because bam, it looks great and you deliver a shitty product or a bad experience or anything. They’re not going to come back to you anyway. So it’s kind of just like for me, it’s are you selling?

[00:59:27] Are, are, are, are you the, if you’re the best and you’re delivering the best possible product and the best possible service, then all of that brand building and all that stuff is going to come as a result, at least how I, right. Um, you, I think we were talking earlier about that. Um, a brand is not just the visual part of a company, a brand is the actual experience that you’re building for your customers in a very short way to say it.

[00:59:52] Um, a brand is not the design part and the visual marketing. So yes, like it’s you, you, what you’re saying is. It’s it’s correct. Like you, you, you can have the best design that is the best logo or the best website, but if you’re not delivering what you’re promising, of course, it’s not going to be great. But go ahead, go ahead, Joe.

[01:00:15] I was going to say, and it goes both ways in a perfect world. You have, it goes hand in hand, you can have a great product that does everything right. And has problems with the brand, you know, and there are examples of that. So, you know, you want to do both, you know, you have to have both in mind. Um, you know, there are companies that have had fantastic products, but have had very serious issues with their brand and reputation and other things.

[01:00:38] So it goes both ways. I think, as we said earlier, there’s no one right answer. These are all, you know, really valuable nuggets that have been shared here too. And, uh, we’re kind of at the top of the hour. So I want to thank everyone. Who’s joined us. I want to thank Olivia, especially who, who really was the, the lead behind this topic idea.

[01:00:57] And Olivia, if there’s any final remarks you want to make before we hand it over to Colin to take us out of the serial entrepreneur hours, I just want to add one more thing just to close this up, um, and bring it back to building a brand, not just a startup and focusing on growth. Um, you can sell a product or a service without a brand.

[01:01:17] Yes, but you do need a sustainable brand to position your company and the market to actually grow a business. So I want to close it up with that and thank you all for being here and contributing. It was a great session. Thank you. And we’ll call him before you go. I just want to thank Warren and Victor, and then.

[01:01:38] Daniel and Marcus and everyone who came on stage today, there was a lot of great insights and feedback shared. And we appreciate that. Colin take us home. Yeah. I mean, look, the power of the community. I mean, to see that this last hour was amazing. I’m just glad we recorded it. Uh, all the experts that we had on stage, what we did today was just amazing.

[01:02:02] I’m actually more probably in Daniel’s camp, you know, solve a problem, run a business, this brand stuff to me, you know, but I have to say in the last hour, it’s opened me up a little bit more to the thought that building a brand is sort of distinct from building a startup. And, uh, anyway, uh, it was so, so impressed, Olivia.

[01:02:23] Great job. Look, we’re keeping the conversation going next Friday, two o’clock one of the, uh, brands that were started in the last 15 years. One of the big ones. It was a company called art of shaving. And we have the founder coming to this session next Friday at two o’clock and everyone who was on stage today.

[01:02:45] We want you on stage next week to keep the conversation about how do we build a brand and not just a startup. Thank you. If you haven’t already done. So go to Colin, talk a little bit about, we have a new recurring show that we’re actually launching next week. That we’d love to have everybody join.

[01:03:10] If you have time, it’s going to be very powerful. It’s called lessons from the edge and we’re going to be doing that Thursdays. I think we said at 4:00 PM Eastern time, and basically folks are given, get on the stage. We’re going to have a featured speaker every week that tells us. Like, uh, you know, epic failure, right?

[01:03:36] That they experienced in their career as a startup, as a CEO or some other significant event and what they really took away from it and what they learned and how they’re applying those lessons. So love for everyone to come that’s next Thursday. And then every Thursday thereafter at 4:00 PM Eastern, have a wonderful rest of your week stay well.


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