Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Why Your Personal Brand Matters! What You Need to Know

Written by Robyn T. Braley

The people who matter to your career and business growth have an opinion about you. Whether you are the CEO of a large corporation, a student, warehouse worker, teacher, online marketer, pest control technician, truck driver, welder, farmer, salesperson or Bootstrapper, what they think will impact your success or failure.

Each of us has a brand. For those who own a business, your company brand will usually be closely aligned with your personal brand, particularly in the early years. It only makes sense that the business will take on the personality of the founder. But, the two brands will still have differences.

Defining your personal brand requires authenticity and transparency. Begin the process by asking pointed questions that require thoughtful and honest answers. 

  1. What am I best known for?
  2. What do others think I am known for?
  3. What do I want others to know me for?
  4. What do I need to change to reshape their opinion?

By answering these questions, you will begin to identify the basic elements of your personal brand. You will find positives to build on, and negatives that need some work. Building your brand is a life-long process that requires periodic self-checks.

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Creating a New Logo? What You Need to Know so it Won't Suck? Tips!

We didn't design this. We just wish we had!
Written by Robyn T. Braley

So, you’ve chosen a company name. Now the time has come to create a logo. Let’s ask the obvious question. As a start-up, why do you need one?

Easy answer! Your logo will provide instant recognition. People around the world recognize the Nike swoosh as soon as they see it. It is a simple yet brilliant design!

Your goal is to develop an icon that will quickly become the visual image that instantly identifies your company. As a new company, it signals that you are serious about what you are doing. 

The latest logo created by Unimark is for a new
oil & gas company manufactures an environmentally
sensitive product that eliminates emissions caused by flaring
unwanted vapors into the atmosphere during the refining. 

Loyal Brandit readers know that my constant theme is branding. Everything comes back to the brand.

And, what is a brand? A brand is what others think it is. Plain and simple.

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

StartUp Funding! Tips, Ideas for Bootstrappers

Written by Robyn T. Braley

If you are reading Brandit for the first time, we are in the midst of a series packed full of practical ideas about how to Bootstrap a company into existence. 

If you are about to start a business and have limited capital, you are in the right place for tips and ideas.

Many Bootstrappers are thrust unexpectedly into starting their own business. The timing is not always of their own choosing. Some were downsized and left with few other options.

The key is to have passion and enthusiasm for what you are about to do. With little money to work with, knowledge, ingenuity and persistence will be your primary resources. Add a healthy dose of motivation, and you are good to go!

At some point, Bootstrappers need capital. Without sounding cliché, it takes money to make money. However, before scheduling a meeting with your banker, let’s explore a variety of options for leveraging your resources.

Thursday, 28 April 2016

What's in a Company Name? Plenty! Find a Sticky Name Customers Will Remember. Tips!

Written by Robyn T. Braley

So, you are starting a new company. It may be as an act of desperation because you were laid off and you’ve given up trying to find another job in your market. You have little money, but there is no other choice. You will bootstrap your company into existence.

Or, perhaps the opposite is true. The economy in your trading area is popping. There are hundreds of opportunities for a new business.

Perhaps there is an emerging need and the company you work for is set in its ways and resists change. You have new ideas about how to adapt to changing times and exploit the new possibilities. This is the time to strike out on your own.

You must satisfy that itch!
Maybe, as an entrepreneur, you have an unsrcatchable itch! You can’t find relief in any other way than to start your own company. You are driven by an overwhelming will to succeed.

O.K., I’ll stop now! Whatever your reason for starting your company, you need a sticky name; one that everyone will remember.

A Lame Name in the Next Lane

How many times have you sat in your vehicle idling at a traffic light when you looked left and noticed a truck sitting in the next lane. You can’t believe your eyes. The name on the side of the truck is the silliest and lamest company name of all time. How can that happen? 

Having gone through the process of naming companies and products many times, I understand completely. It can happen for any one of a number or reasons. 

·         The owner was up against an incorporation deadline and needed a name – fast!
·         The owner just got her first order and needed a name before she could invoice for   badly needed cash
·         The owner chose the name years ago but the meaning is no longer relevant
·         The owner’s nephew in high school Drama chose it because he is really creative
·         The owner chose the name against all available advice, particularly from his spouse

Thursday, 4 February 2016

10 Tips for Staying Motivated in Extremely Demotivating Times

What drives you to achieve?
Written by Robyn T. Braley

There are three types of people who will read this post; 

1. Those who want to be motivated

2. Those who must inspire others to be motivated

3. Those who are always motivated and constantly look for new ways to keep it that way. 

Before you hurriedly click out of this post, relax! This is not a droning academic study of the psychology of selling. 

While anyone at any point in their life may find this ... shall we say ... motivating, it originated as part of my series about Bootstrapping. Bootrappers are unique people who start businesses with few resources and need to succeed NOW! 

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Born to Sell; What Makes a Sales Champion

Written by Robyn T Braley

When the economy dips, it’s time to dig down deep and evaluate every area of your business. What works really well? What isn’t working well? 

What areas just get by because they have been ignored for years? 

Selling is the fuel that drives the engine of business. No sales, no revenue. No revenue ... well, you know the ending and its not pretty. 

Fuel for Champions

I started writing a single post with tips for honing sales skills. As I got into it, the article became longer and longer and evolved into 10 story ideas. Each is meant to be a quick read by people who’s livelihood depends on sales success.

If you are a sales or fund raising professional, the posts will help you review the fundamentals. If you are a Bootstrapper who is starting a new business with few resources, they will introduce you to basic sales knowledge and strategies. 

Finally, if your life is indirectly impacted by sales – which is everyone – these posts will help you understand sales and sales professionals

Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Thinking As If There is no Box; 10 Marketing Tips for Tough Times

Think as if there is no box!

Written by Robyn T. Braley

Business survival depends on producing results when economies tank. To keep existing clients while trying to find new business, the challenge is not to think outside the box. It is to think as if there is no box!

Every market segment is different. They just are. And, that is the fun in working with unique clients.

So, to suggest there are one-size-fits all solutions runs counter to the way we think at Unimark Creative. We like to walk beside our clients, learn more about their needs, and find ways to solve their marketing problems.

I always feel uncomfortable when asked to come up with lists of “must-have” marketing tools. The secret to business success is to identify your client’s needs and provide a solution that will meet them. Simple, right?

Hold on. When hit by an unpredictable economy, business owners are forced to consider programs they may not have considered previously. Some get back to the basics that helped them get started. Others do things they've never done before as they shore up existing business while also searching for new opportunities.