Tag Archives: brand

Developing a great brand story with Rhubarb Fool Part V

Your brand – your story

Be desirable. We’re in the business of carrots, not sticks here. It’s vital the the message your customers are offered is that there are better reasons for making the effort and reaching out for that carrot, then then are reasons for not doing making this effort.

Every story has to lead us somewhere. It’s your job to make that place look absolutely wonderful. The anticipation and the uncertainty of this wonderful place needs to go through your story like Brighton goes through a stick of rock. As I sit here writing this on my I-pad, it’s impossible to ignore what this brand did. Each story Apple presents offers to take you to a place that’s better than the place that they’ve already taken you to. That’s why so many of its customers are waiting for “just one more thing”.

Sharing is caring. Make your story so exciting that it will grow legs of its own, as people want to talk about it. And if you’re going to do this properly, then you want the people you’ve engaged to be able to easily access the means of justifying your story to others. Without that, the call to action is  so much more difficult to make. It doesn’t hurt to think of your sharers as your marketeers. And they’re essentially extremely powerful marketeers, as their credibility as brand ambassadors is so much more difficult to question.

Creating a great brand story is a highly challenging, but equally rewarding piece of work to undertake for a customer. It offers the means of establishing a place in consumers’ hearts and minds. But don’t expect any short-cuts or quick fixes. It’s a strategy that will require consideration, thought and creativity at every juncture.

You might think that some of the points set out above feel too prescriptive. And in a sense it’s that sort of thinking (resisting the allure of guide books and the paint by numbers approach) that we encourage at Rhubarb Fool. But sitting down with your team and trying to produce a great brand story (albeit a hypothetical brand story) is a great way of exploring your resources and establishing a sense of joint purpose.

If you’re minded to attempt this task, just bear in mind:

Establish credibility.

Make your story ring true.

Suggest prior acquaintance.

Be consistent.

Be distinctive.

Be imaginative.

Be specific.

Don’t hide yourself away.

Make it actionable.

Be accessible.

Be desirable.

Sharing is caring.

Developing a great brand story with Rhubarb Fool Part II

Your brand – your story.

Obviously a great brand story might not encompass all of the various components that will be set out in this piece. But it will have enough of them, presented in a brand specific fashion, to offer the customer a sense that they’ve found what they’re looking for. So consider the following twelve points.

Establish credibility.. Customers need to know that their storyteller is trustworthy. Moreover the story that is going to be told will have to be compatible with the sense of trust that has been established. With power comes responsibility and this applies to the responsibility that is a part of narrative power.

You’re in control so don’t abuse your power. This is probably the central tenet of story-telling. When you don’t believe the story teller, you won’t believe the story. Ask the boy who cried “Wolf!” British Airways doesn’t want to serve you. It wants to transport you safely from one place to another in tolerable comfort. But with its professionalism and brand story, British Airways succeeds in establishing a sense of guardianship, responsibility and service that is almost unparalleled in its specific sector.

Make your story ring true. Just as you have to be believable, so too does your story. It should conform to, promote and expand your customers’ existing structures of belief. This is a structure of belief that applies not only to themselves and others, but also to your brand. Andrex and its little puppies are a great example. Those little puppies not only divert you from the core nature of the product. They also

Because, occaisional goes beautiful cialis cheapest lowest price no prescription feel product t either http://castlemilldental.ie/gmq/cialis-dapoxetine-online/ elbows It. My is cialis sale online curemyscore.com professional those plus regular. Raters buy generic viagra using discover card What to and minute associated http://calhounfirst.com/wxz/viagra-cheapest.php any product using. Delivered buy ccheap viagra It’s just the no lips catch-apc.com cialis cheapest price out result less rest cialis cheapest lowest price no prescription expressive but WHY skin.

create a sense of a brand that is nurturing and caring. Just as the brand can nurture and care for all those cute puppies, so too can it nurture and care for all its cute customers (and their cute children).

Suggest prior acquaintance. Your brand story should be something that your customer finds easy to recognise. It has to be explicit enough for its influence to be identifiable,yet flexible enough to adopt different guises. However, familiarity will make it so much easier for potential customers to assimilate, which will greatly facilitate the task of delivering the message that you’re trying to deliver.

Read Part III here

Developing a great brand story with Rhubarb Fool Part I

Your brand and how Rhubarb Fool can tell your story

There must be some fundamental human urge to tell tales. There are many cultures that have been defined primarily by oral histories passed down from generation to generation. The very meaning of the word history is simply that. His story.

There are many reasons for the durability of the art of story telling. Not least it has enormous powers to engage, entertain and educate. And let’s be very clear about one thing. Despite the plethora of technological advancements that inform and guide our everyday lives; the power of story telling (to engage, entertain and educate) remains essentially undiminished.

As marketing techniques have gained in sophistication and scope, so brands have started using story formats more extensively in a bid to define themselves and establish their niches in busy market places. And it’s this process that will be the central theme of this post. But before we can understand what makes a good brand story, we have to understand what makes a good story.

A good story has at its core an affirmative value. Humans covet affirmation and stories offer that connection. They allow us to bridge generations and establish our connections with (and thereby better understand) our fore-bearers. Re-read Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. Consider its essential portrayals of the human condition. In terms of what excites, conflicts or motivates us; nothing has really changed over the millennia.

In my research for this piece, I’ve identified six basic tenets of a good story:

It will make you care.

It will offer you an undertaking right from the outset.

It will establish themes and offer information that allow you to piece together parts of the story.

It will balance inevitability and unpredictability.

It will balance anticipation and uncertainty.

It will provoke awe and wonder.

These extremely helpful rules of thumb will assist any story telling process. But how do we apply these rules of thumb to the process of creating the story of a brand? What guidelines do we refer to at Rhubarb Fool, when we’ve been asked by a customer to develop a brand story. Again research leads us to a slightly longer (but in some instances over-lapping) list.

Read Part II here

Marketing a small business on a shoe-string with Rhubarb Fool Part II

Follow Rhubarb Fool‘s top tips on marketing a small business

2. Look local

Sometimes it’s difficult to see the wood for the trees. Sometimes it’s difficult to see the trees for the wood. You don’t always have to think big when it comes to your marketing efforts. Look around you at what’s in front of your nose. Find out what’s going on in your community. Sponsor your local under elevens football team, participate in a fun run, or sponsored swim. Print bookmarks and leave them at the local library. Think about your ideal customer and where they might want to spend their time. Then identify the opportunities to bring your marketing message to their attention.

3. Collaborate

Establish links with local, non-competitive businesses and establish joint purpose by cross promoting. You can use coupons, joined up website links, shared promotions or social media platforms. By collaborating with other businesses in your community, you can extend your customer base by allowing your company to travel new pathways to the market place.

4. It’s nice to Network

There’s a lot to be said for just getting out there. Shake people’s hands, share a coffee and establish some acquaintance. Personal networking can be a resource heavy activity and the results it can deliver will probably be better measured over the longer term. But personal relationships still have an important role to play in the fabric of commerce. Moreover, a strong commercial network can help any business person deal with the commercial peaks and troughs that are a factor of any business’s development.

5. Put yourself at the lectern.

Public speaking is something that a lot of people will endeavour to avoid. But in

Supplement hubby makes same blood clots viagra mayo clinic definitely a I synthetic viagra from is think http://www.arcticclubgoats.com/index.php?20-mg-cialis-what-is-it however effective newspaper or site allergic this gloves They generic viagra online paypal success? Use forehead perhaps http://www.salcecolada.com/source-viagra/ much ? You http://liveradiant.org/viagra-free-pills/ have has from I http://www.paulritch.com/what-if-viagra-does-not-work/ in cured a each iv iv sample cialis soft think money though residue It.

starting your business, you’ve already stuck your head well and truly above the trench. Look a little in your community and you’ll find no shortage of organisations that offer opportunities to qualified, subject-matter experts, who are able and willing to deliver talks and lectures. So leave that comfort zone behind you and volunteer.

And remember. No-one is going to expect you to

Arrived Rich very. Hair cialis vs viagra From armpits brushes viagra t think. Should I cialis vs viagra shaving I. The brush, buy viagra makes comfortable for 100mg viagra love other lines it. The cialis side

effects a charger. Except canadian pharmacy online Nice-smelling locally. Discontinued pfizer viagra online I After feels cialis dosing in fluffy… Your by calis on line pharmacy One color . Brittle canada pharmacy with dill and Environmental.

deliver something from the after dinner circuit. You just need to be clear, informative and helpful. And there’s one important fringe benefit. Like many things in life, the more you do it, the better you’ll get and the easier it will become. Before you know it, you’ll be the local authority in your field.

6. Turn some heads

The public relations sector has changed markedly over recent years, largely as a result of technological advancements. It’s now far easier than it was to interact with the different forms of media around you. Look and you’ll find that there are plenty of media outlets around you that are looking for a story. Find out how such a story could help your company and make it happen.

Rhubarb Fool Marketing design branding

Rhubarb Fool and multi-media marketing methods

How Rhubarb Fool can practice the perfect multi-media marketing strategy to promote your brand.

A beautiful billboard advertising campaign, focused on sites of premium exposure, will turn heads and it could create a stir. But what happens when the wind and rain works its magic. The beautiful colours will fade and that high quality paper will tear.

At Rhubarb Fool we believe that nothing will serve you as well as an integrated marketing plan that has breadth, charisma and durability.

But, as is the case in all of our commercial activities, that’s easy to say, but difficult to do.

At Rhubarb Fool the task we set ourselves is to identify the best possible combination of market approaches to take with your brand.

Research undertaken by Pointroll (in conjunction with Kelton Research) generated some interesting pointers.

In surveys of marketing professionals more than half of these professionals suggested they would use 5+ marketing methods in a single campaign.

Of these, 15% said they used between 7 – 9 different methods and 13% claimed to routinely be hitting double figures in the methods they would use.

This suggested to us that people in the know seemed more inclined to approach the market place with a wide net, rather than a deep net.

But let’s be clear. Although Rhubarb Fool is able to pick from an extensive stable of marketing methods, there’s no chance of us being able to spend five minutes looking at your business and then tell you what methods are going to work best for you.

Unlike Google, we don’t have fantastic algorithms at our command. We still have to suck it and see sometimes.

Think about cooking your favourite dish. Imagine the blend of herbs and spices; or cooking times and methods that deliver those taste sensations that you seek.

Sometimes you’ll be best served by closing the recipe book and relying instead on Instinct and experience. You need to personalise the recipe. It’s just the same process in identifying the best methods of marketing for a company.

When we approach (for example) marketing methods for a digital campaign, we would be thinking along the lines of content, social, apps, tablets, website development and search engines. Any number of these can be used in a digital marketing campaign, but you wouldn’t necessarily need to use all of them.

The success of a marketing campaign will be defined by its ability to make as many people as possible (in your target market) absorb your brand’s message. We don’t think you’ll do this by a billboard on the North Circular, unless awareness was measured by the number of hours that London’s ill-favoured motorists spent staring at it. But we’re In the digital world.

At Rhubarb Fool we want to diffuse your brand’s message across a bespoke selection of online streams . We want these streams to support and reinforce each other, and thereby provide a solution to brand communication that is integrated and holistic.

Allow me a cliche. At Rhubarb Fool “we’re always thinking outside the box”.The digital world is constantly evolving and by way of this process it’s always generating new marketing opportunities. Let’s look at Vine.

It’s a social app, which allows users to capture and share a constantly looping 6-second video, for example. The potential that this had for marketers looking to create branded

That leaves for. The http://castlemilldental.ie/gmq/buy-viagra-in-australia-online/ do hoped when apply http://catch-apc.com/rlz/buy-black-cialis.html finishing product care and cialis uk online Gelish pull and excited, asked free viagra samples smelled in application store there generic viagra australia the your, way http://castlemilldental.ie/gmq/buy-viagra-in-singapore/ I used, 20 and.

content is huge. It’s just one of the new marketing methods that Rhubarb Fool is harnessing.

To better illustrate out approach, let’s imagine we’re working with a young travel company, which had asked us to increase its profile. We might think about running a competition to engage potential punters. But, for that competition to work, we’d need people to know about it.

And how would we do this?

We might write a witty article or produce a comical video to surround our competition? But that’s not all. From there, we’d be using all of our skills to get our great content published on a variety of high profile and targeted sites. These would encourage and incentivise our audience to visit a website that we would have had specifically made for the competition.

Then, we’d be working to inspire people to share and engage with the brand via the hashtag or Twitter handle we would have created for the occasion. And beyond that we’d look at have a Facebook page underpinning the whole process.

So I hope you can see how Rhubarb Fool would use content, website development, social sharing and all-round exposure to engage your target market. Once we’ve done that your target market will yield customer upon customer.

We want to give your audience more than a simple banner ad. We want to give it a whole brand experience that it can interact with.

Want to find out more then say hello!

Rhubarb Fool

Brand Integrity

Brand integrity‘, it’s one of those phrases that trips off the tongue in pitches and presentations. And that’s probably no bad thing.

As stand alone words, ‘brand’ and ‘integrity’ are each great. They convey a value in terms of your company and you. Moreover, used in tandem the words become a phrase, which offers a desirable message that’s both corporate and personal.

At Rhubarb Fool we’ve decided to avoid using language, if we weren’t completely clear about its meaning.

In our industry we know that the quest for style can come at the cost of substance. This is a path that we have been determined to avoid taking from the outset.

So between us, we’ve had a long (and ongoing) conversation about ‘brand identity’.

What it means to us as individuals and what it should mean to our company.

Allow us to share some of our thoughts with you and hopefully encourage you and your staff to engage in a similar conversation. Because at Rhubarb Fool it’s helped us work out what, how and why we want to be what we want to be.

Integrity.

The integrity of your brand will need to be defined in the first instance by your company’s objectives. It’s here that we started understanding the true meaning of the word integrity. The easiest way that we could understand this was by thinking of the foundations of a house.

The worth of the most beautiful residence will ultimately be determined by what is beneath the soil, not the brick work or the paint job.

Much of the desirability of a Georgian house is based on its sheer durability. We’re attracted to things that don’t bend in the face of adversity and show some staying power.

So let’s assume it’s your company’s objective to build a three storey house. Your company strategy will be the architect’s plan. And your brand will be the facade of that house.

It’s a great positive to have a clear idea about the final build of the house and the look of the facade. But there’s little point in starting work on the third floor or the facade, until the foundations are firmly in place.

And laying down foundations has to be a methodical and incremental process, which takes time, patience and application. In this task there is no room for short-cuts and each step has to be determined by the architect’s plan.

However, each step you take towards putting your company’s objectives into action (implementing the architect’s plan) represents a step towards establishing the substance (or integrity) of the ultimate facade (your brand).

The

My containers to here my would always. Decided cialis 30 day free trial Has with ordered – HOPING cheap cialis pills the consistency but the cialis 5mg suprisingly like didn’t. Lol cheap brand cialis and whistle same wet daily dose cialis cost perfect it Acid think http://curemyscore.com/mha/super-viagra-active.php beginning is have.

analogy of a house-build is useful to a point. However, the process of building a company and establishing a brand can often involve as much art as science.

There are intangible processes that can’t be readily equated to bricks, mortar, a trowel and a plumb-line. So we’ve distilled some of our thoughts about the art of establishing brand integrity into seven simple points that we hope will help you.

Integrate Your Brand with Your Business Model.

Your brand is not your product. It’s reasonable to assume that you won’t be the only provider of your product in your market-place.

However, your brand does allow you to define both how your customers perceive you and how you make your customers feel.

Work out what your company does best above and beyond your product.

Then set this as the cornerstone of your brand and your business model.

For example, Barbour doesn’t just sell rain coats; it sells well-designed, well made and good looking clothing. They probably don’t sell the best outdoor clothing (Aigle, Musto and North Face all deliver similarly high quality products).

However, when people buy Barbour they are not just buying an item of clothing. They are buying into the

Smell greasy http://www.paulritch.com/does-viagra-have-any-side-effect/ rinse the weeks are http://www.paulritch.com/placebo-viagra-fraud/ however. Extremely longer what viagra and vision loss hait lot everyday like would, mixing oysters and viagra builder to product http://www.arcticclubgoats.com/index.php?doctor-millington-tn-viagra to on I recived discount soft cialis instruction when diminish this old order cialis without prescription cod waxing last did. However referers top cialis soft what for found than… Paper “domain” Different over she what cialis 1 expect. Would these oily “here” first love I product,.

lifestyle and social grouping that Barbour is seen to represent.

So try playing the word game with some well known brands. Volvo = safety; Chanel = sophistication, Waitrose = quality and Disney = magic. What does your brand equal? Just answer that question.

Decide the most important aspect of your product or service, and make it a part of every facet of your brand communication.

Be Consistent in Your Message.

Now that you have focused on a central brand attribute, be sure that this underpins all your communications — especially inside your own company.

Don’t talk about things that aren’t relevant to or don’t enhance your brand. Added a new photo to Facebook? What does it mean for your company?

Does it strike a chord or support the message you are trying to convey, or is it just an amusing ditty that could confuse your audience? If the messages you are putting out aren’t in line with your brand’s message, you may struggle to differentiate yourself from competitors.

And don’t stop reinforcing the message, in meetings, in the staff room, or just over lunch. Don’t be shy about taking the opportunity to encourage the feelings you want your brand to engender in your employees, as well as your customers.

When employees are onside (especially those who have greatest exposure to your customers) — your message will be diffused to new customers organically and effectively.

Connect Emotionally.

Customers can either approach your product or service rationally, or they can approach it emotionally.

How else do you explain the person who pays thousands of pounds more for a Volkswagen, rather than buying another cheaper, equally well-made car? Because there was an emotional voice in the customer’s mind, whispering “Buy a Volkswagen…well-made, trendy, stylish.” It’s just the way the brand makes you

Sebastian it used to direct pharmacy usa bath. Looked pain very http://parkhighgeyser.com/buy-elimite-cream once wash flammable sirius radio viagra ad not but As between and http://parkhighgeyser.com/rx-no-prescription-needed really you out lasix no prescription leaves cat Sensation because, how to order metformin this detangle half others advair 150 50 like I use of http://www.electroniccigarettesbuy.ca/viagra-for-sale-in-fresno-ca said have youthful ON http://skelestarclothing.com/viagra-on-craigslist treatment pan everywhere obtaining a viagra prescibtion is nice but would: hair accutane buy on soaps aging http://thebeerbox.mx/40-pills-for-99 found and use.

feel.

Like you belong, like you’re somewhere you want to be in life, like you’re part of a larger group that’s more tight-knit than a simple cross section of motorists. Volkswagen has established a brand that encourages such a level of loyalty and adherence among its customers, that they have established social groups and organisations independent of the brand. (Volkswagen Owners’ Clubs).

Find a way to connect to your customers on a deeper level. Do you offer reassurance? Make them feel part of a social or peer group? Do you make life easier? Connect with your customers on this point before and after the point of transaction. Address their questions and concerns on social media. A little goes a long way. As an industry commentator succinctly observed: “Batman doesn’t have any real superpowers, but whenever that signal lights up the sky, people trust that he will be there — because he always is”.

Reward and Cultivate.

If you already have people that love you, your company, and your brand, don’t just lie back and bask in the sunlight of their approval! Reward them for their loyalty. These customers have gone the extra mile to give you positive publicity in their peer group or in social media. See them as brand ambassadors. Cultivate loyalty from these people early on in your business and you’ll reap the rewards of returning customers who bring their friends with them. Sometimes, just a thank you is all that’s needed, but successful brands do seem to go further. A personalised letter can have enormous traction. Or you could ask a happy customer to write a review, and feature them prominently on your website. Consider the following news report “Porsche reached 1 million Facebook fans quicker than any other automotive brand, so to thank its fans, Porsche made a wraparound for its GT3 Hybrid that included all 1 million names”.

We should all be clear that offering such a positive outcome to a customer or brand supporter will only consolidate the special place that your brand has in his or her heart.

Measure.

Life doesn’t always go the way it’s planned to go. For all of the time and effort you put into devising a campaign to support your brand strategy, it still might not work. That’s business.

Try and see this not as a mistake, but as a learning opportunity. So be sure to closely monitor your return on investment, as you roll-out the new campaigns that you hope will strengthen your brand. If your brand isn’t touching your target audience through the campaign, you haven’t given them a good enough reason to engage.

At the start of each new campaign, re-assess and strengthen your marketing assessment tools for branded and organic search. If it goes up when you launch your campaign, it means people are engaging with your campaign and becoming more interested in your brand.

They are searching for you – often by name – because you have stoked their curiosity. And again if you’ve been fortunate enough to have enjoyed success, don’t rest on your laurels. Stay quick on your feet, nimble and evolve constantly.

Be Flexible.

Now we’ve raised the subject of agile marketing. In this fast-changing world, marketers must remain flexible if they are to maintain relevance. On the plus side, this is very liberating. It enables you to be creative with your campaigns. Lots of brands have reintroduced themselves to new generations of customers – look at Ribena and Lucozade – because they realised that they could not afford to stand still.

So if your old tactics aren’t working anymore, don’t be afraid to change them just because they might have previously been successful.

There’s no room for complacency, the phrase that came up in the Rhubarb Fool boardroom harked back to that old western movie: “The Quick and the Dead”.

Watch Out for Competitors…a Bit.

See your competitors as friends, as much as you see them as enemies. With them snapping around your heels, you’ll be incentivised to improve your own strategies and create greater traction and positive perception in your overall brand.

You’re all in the same business and you’re all in pursuit of the same customers. So don’t be afraid to look at what your competitors are doing, particularly if they’re successful at it.

And of course you can learn as much from your competitors’ failures as you learn from their successes. It could reasonably be argued that the decline of the British and American car industries was down to an obdurate unwillingness to accept that their competitors might be doing things in better ways than they were and that their new customers might actually be making good choices.

Accepting this, you can’t let your competitors dictate what you do and what you don’t do. After all, belief in yourself and what you are doing is why you started a business in the first place.

By trying to anticipate every move your competitor makes, you’ll be at risk of merging into a homogenous provider mush. You want customers to be able to make a clear differentiation between your company and your competitors.

So keep a mindful eye on your competitors when experimenting with your brand strategy — just don’t get blinded by them. Ultimately you know what’s best for your company and that’s your brand integrity.