brand development

3 Things You’ll Never Achieve Without a Killer Messaging Strategy

My high school basketball coach used to say “You won’t win if you don’t put in the work.” Inspiring words, but hard to appreciate when you’re running suicide sprints and defensive slide drills. He was right, though. Strength and conditioning made us better ball players and definitely helped propel us to the 1992 state quarterfinals. Go Bluejays!

You can choose from a million metaphors, but it all comes back to one truth. No amount of desire will help you achieve your goals if you don’t have a strong foundation to build on.

[Insert brilliant segue…]

The same is, of course, true for your marketing and sales goals. Strength and conditioning = messaging strategy. Without putting in the work to define and strengthen your message, three critical goals will continue to elude your brand.

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The ROI of Messaging Strategy

Without a clear map, you’re just driving in circles

Vague. Stagnant. Jargony. All-over-the-place. Do any of these words describe your current brand voice?

Many factors can cause a brand to lose the effectiveness of its voice—a recent acquisition, a new product or market focus, a rapidly growing workforce or just the passing of time. When these things happen, it leads to mixed and confusing messages—both inside your company and out in the market—that are inconsistent and uninspiring for customers and employees alike.

Stepping back to re-evaluate and reset your brand voice doesn’t have to be painful. But it’s essential for focusing your marketing and sales efforts and building a clear path for driving long-term business success.

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Value leads brand

Fake It ’til You Make It?

It’s a longstanding debate … does brand lead value or does value lead the brand? For many start-ups or new product launches, marketing becomes the first priority of the day. The ol’ “build it and they will come” mindset takes over.

But for many companies, somehow the “it” came to mean a great pitch instead of a great product or service that provides real value to the customer. In today’s “idea explosion” economy, it’s a mad dash to get the big idea to market before someone else steals your thunder.

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It’s Not You, It’s Them

In building a brand, it’s less about what you do and more about why people should care.

When it comes to crafting our core brand messages—especially if we’re introducing a new product or starting a new business—it’s easy to make it all about us. This tendency is often rooted in doubt or fear. Because even when our new product or service has a boatload of science, market research and years of expertise behind it, we still battle that nagging uncertainty that inevitably causes us to over-explain ourselves.

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Pitching a No-hitter? Rethink Your Delivery.

The elusive elevator pitch. Everybody wants one; everybody needs one. Or so everyone thinks.

It’s often one of the first things a client asks me about during a brand messaging initiative. And while the premise behind an elevator pitch still has merit, the reality of cornering your sales and marketing prey with one nice and tidy 25-word punch that lands a direct hit every time is well, unrealistic. 

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