Branding as Marketing

Please find some links and notes from the 2 Regular Guys Podcast. Tune in for an exciting week with Jay Busselle of Equipment Zone joining us to talk all things branding. He will talk about how good branding improves your marketing and how having a style guide will make everything easier. Jay always has a wealth of knowledge to share so you don’t want to miss the latest from Jay. Also, the good folks from the ISS Shows have a big announcement they are releasing first here on the 2 Regular Guys! #Regulators mount up!

Sponsored by: Embrilliance.com. Get 10% off by using the code 2RG at check out.

Our regular listeners know this, but 2 Regular Guys are all about garment decorating, a bit of fun, and no rants or lectures or selling. We are not doing this for our employers, but rather for our industry. Since February 2013, The 2 Regular Guys have been the first and the most listened to garment decorating industry podcast on this planet! We are humbled by all of you tuning in each week. We work hard to bring you information that will make your business better, and our industry better. Take a look at our incredible weekly guest list and you’ll understand where this industry goes for news, interviews and the heartbeat of garment decorating. Thanks for listening!

News

  • ISS Call for Presenters – mark your calendar: The deadline for submissions for the 2020 ISS Conferences is April 26, 2019.  Please note that we cannot put you on the conference program without the requested paperwork by the requested deadline. They are FIRM on this deadline, so only those submissions returned by April 26, 2019, will be considered for 2020 speaking.

Branding as Marketing

Aaron: We’d like to welcome to the show Josh Carruth, the Imprinted Sportswear Show Director, and Marcia Derryberry, Editor-in-Chief with Impressions Magazine.

Terry: I feel as if we should have a drum roll. Josh, ready to make the announcement?

Aaron: Marcia, tell us a little about the history and connection between the show and the magazine.

Terry: Josh, share your vision for the future and some of the changes you plan for 2020 and beyond.

Aaron: Where can our listeners find more information?

Branding as Marketing with Jay Busselle

Terry: Rumor has it that Jay began his screen printing and graphics career sometime in the early 1980’s in Mr. Perry’s graphics class in High School. He started printing “unofficial replica” t-shirts of his favorite skiing and skateboarding companies, as well as a few bands which will remain nameless. It’s been over 30 years and Jay is still hanging out with promo peeps and apparel geeks on the island of misfit toys! Jay is the marketing director for Equipment Zone; the founder of a weekly Twitter chat called #promochat and is a self-proclaimed CTO – Chief Taco Officer! Jay is a highly rated industry presenter and accomplished trainer on topics like branding, marketing, and social media.

Aaron: SO WHAT CAN YOU TELL OUR AUDIENCE ABOUT BRANDING, JAY?

Branding isn’t easy… I can tell you that!

A lot of smart marketers have shared a lot of opinions and thoughts on the definition of a brand. This is mine:

Your brand is not your logo.

Your brand is not what you do.

Your brand is not your product.

Your brand is your style.

Your brand is your promise to me.

Your brand is how you make me feel.

So many business owners in our industry make a mess of this. They already have a business that has invested in machines, people and processes. They need their ROI – they need sales! They are starving for sales. With that pressure they decide on a sale, slap some marketing together, fire off a few emails, create some social media posts and wait for the orders to roll in. That almost never works. And if you did get lucky with a few orders, it’s not sustainable!

Marketing is overwhelming enough. Especially when you’re trying to reach a hyper connected, wicked smart and very skeptical audience — that RESISTS MARKETING!

Here’s the good news: when you use a proven formula, I think marketing gets way easier. The formula that I use is the result of over 25 years of work. My experience includes tons of marketing campaigns both internal & external; searching hundreds of marketing articles, attending dozens of seminars and I even read a few books.

My formula is centered on what I call a Style Guide.

Terry: THAT’S SOUNDS PRETTY COOL JAY; CAN YOU TELL US MORE ABOUT THE STYLE GUIDE?

Sure! The purpose of your Style Guide is to have a working document that provides guidelines and the outline for the way your brand should be presented from both a graphic and written perspective. It’s the instruction manual for how you plan on marketing to and engaging with your audience.

Working on your brands Style Guide gives you clarity on why your organization exists, and why your customers should care. When your Style Guide is complete, all your marketing strategies can flow from a solid foundation.

Aaron:  I LIKE THE WAY YOU DESCRIBED IT AS AN INSTRUCTION MANUAL.  CAN YOU SHARE SOME OF WHAT’S IN THE STYLE GUIDE?

I thought you’d never ask!

It starts with your company’s purpose? What do you stand for? I think everyone in your company needs really understand the following: “We solve the following problem for the following audience.” We eliminate (fill in the blank) challenge for (fill in the blank) customer. I’m not talking about Cause Marketing. That could play a really important role if it’s authentic… but you can’t be another Ivory Ella saving the Elephants because there already is one!

The point is to know and share the single most important idea, or purpose with your customers and community.

Next, people want to know what your story is.

You need a one or two paragraph summary of your story. Your story might be a blend of both your personal life and your business. What was your journey and how did you get to this point? Why did you start this business? What do you love most about it? What struggles have you overcome? What makes you and your staff rare and uniquely qualified? Your story should mention your purpose.

Terry: OK, SO LET’S SEE IF I’VE GOT THIS SO FAR… THE STORY GUIDE WOULD ACTUALLY BE A DOCUMENT WHERE YOU EXPLAIN YOUR PURPOSE AND SHARE YOUR STORY?

YES! It sounds like you’re getting this.

Aaron: SO THAT CAN’T BE ALL, RIGHT?  WHAT ELSE IS IN THE STYLE GUIDE?

That’s right; there are a few more important parts but I can cover 2 now. The next part of the Style Guide is defining the identity or character of your company? This helps reinforce the uniqueness and the personality of your company. Is your company:

  •    Playful & Lighthearted {or} Serious & Sober
  •    Economical & Affordable {or} Luxury & Lavish
  •    Vintage & Classic {or} Modern & Contemporary
  •    Simple & Uncomplicated {or} Complex & Intricate

Now that we are clear the purpose, understand the story and have a feel for the personality of the business – we are ready to design and create:

The Visuals – the logo, icons & theme

The Printed Marketing materials: business cards, letterhead, flyers, signs, posters

The Digital Marketing content: website, landing pages, emails, social media

Once all of the ingredients come together they help create a powerful brand that is aligned and consistent!

Donald Miller, CEO of StoryBrand, & author of Building a Story Brand said, “People don’t buy the best products and services. They buy the ones that they can understand the fastest.”

When you combine your newly aligned and consistent branding with a great product and great service then I know how your customers are going to feel – REALLY GOOD! I started this conversation today telling you what I think branding is:

Your brand is your style.

Your brand is your promise to me.

Your brand is how you make me feel.

I think I may have hinted to both of you a few months ago that I’ve been working on a downloadable version of this Style Guide that explains formula in much greater detail. I’ve simplified the process for this interview. The Style Guide is about 10 pages and it has examples and a worksheet. I’m excited to say I’m about a month away. It won’t be free but it will be affordable.

My hope is that more businesses in our apparel decoration industry use this tool for them – but I also plan on allowing buyers of the Style Guide to use it as a template. Meaning they can brand it as their own and use the tools to help other small businesses with their branding.

Facebook Live Video

Other Events

  • Aaron’s Online Video Series “Small Business Saturdays” #SBSVideos Every Saturday 
  • Friday, April 5th – DAX Minnesota – The Digitizing Difference: Foam, Gradients, and Performancewear
  • April 5th – 12:30 PM DAX Minnesota – Developing a Business Plan
  • April 5th – 2:20 PM DAX Minnesota – Being Customer Centric EQUALS More Profits
  • Saturday, Apr 6th – DAX Minnesota – Patch Making for Fun and Profit
  • Phoenix with WorkHorse Products on April 27-28
  • Chicago with Atlas Screen Supply on June 22-23

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