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Maverick's Monday Morning Marketing Memo

The Real Way to Brand Your Business -- Be You

Maverick Steffen  -  7/1/2024

Be yourself; have you ever heard of that?

Well today the pitch is: brand yourself; you'll be a lot happier.

Let me explain.

Aligning your brand with your unique personality isn't just beneficial – it's essential.

This alignment creates a natural, authentic business flow, resonating deeply with customers.

Let's look at Sam Walton.

Sam Walton's Walmart epitomizes his frugal nature. A striking anecdote I read in his book totally encapsulates this.

A multimillion-dollar Asian businessman flying in to meet Walton, expecting a grand welcome, was picked up by a man in a battered red truck, complete with a random battery on the backseat.

The wealthy businessman asked: "when do I get to meet Sam Walton?" The man replied, "I AM Sam Walton!"

This encounter wasn't just a surprise; it was a powerful statement of Walmart’s ethos: simplicity and cost-effectiveness. Frugality was his brand, and so was his business.

Steve Jobs was Apple personified.

His obsession with creativity, intellect, sophistication, and exclusivity mirrored in every Apple product.

Jobs lived a minimalist lifestyle, so much so that his home barely had furniture.

This philosophy of refined simplicity was evident in the symmetrical and proportional design of Apple products.

Donald Trump's brand screams luxury, mirroring his personal penchant for the extravagant. Everything about Trump's brand is designed to be larger-than-life, reflecting his own taste for opulence and grandeur.

Also, Oprah Winfrey. Her brand is a reflection of her journey and philosophy.

From her talk show to her network, Oprah's brand is about empowerment, resilience, and emotional connection, mirroring her personal narrative and beliefs.

The wealthy businessman asked: "when do I get to meet Sam Walton?" The disheveled man in the beat up red truck replied, "I AM Sam Walton!" 

Richard Branson and the Virgin brand is adventurous, unconventional, and fun, much like Branson himself. His daredevil persona and love for adventure are seamlessly woven into the brand's identity.

Zuckerberg was obsessed with being a part of the best social club in college, so he created the biggest one on the planet.

Incongruence between your personality and your brand can lead to a lot of problems with your business and your satisfaction with it.

Yes, a brand should stand out, but if that means creating a brand that defies your nature, find a different business.

For instance, if you're naturally extravagant, a low-cost brand may feel unnatural.

Similarly, if organization isn't your forte, a brand centered on organizational solutions might struggle to resonate authentically.

I had a roofing client in South Jersey who loved being atop roofs. It was like his addiction he told me when I asked if he missed being in the field.

During a photo shoot, I noticed a loft in the company's large warehouse garage and suggested he move his desk up there. He gave me a bit of a scowl which I assumed was him not approving of my ball-busting--I was actually being serious.

Anyway, a few week later we had an extended call. I noticed how loud his background noise was.

A bit distracted, I asked why it was so loud. He told me the guys were really busy that day in the warehouse. I asked why he was working in the warehouse, at which point he exclaimed, "oh, I took your advice and stuck my desk up here." Can't make this stuff up.

Your brand should be a mirror of your personality.

When your business reflects your true self, it not only becomes more enjoyable but also more successful.

Authenticity resonates, and in the world of business, this resonance is key to connecting with your audience. Be true to yourself, and let your brand be an extension of who you are.

If you're a bit arrogant and love manipulating people, you can do my job!

To your success!


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