DAY ONE

Who else wants to build an empire like Starbucks?

Let me tell you something.

I do!

I want that pull. I want to be able to command an audience and turn my brand into a lifestyle that people cannot live without.

Think about it.

The Apple-ites own more than one Apple product. They have an iPad, a Macbook, an iPhone, and more than likely an Apple Watch. Apple is integrated in almost every aspect of their lives. They live and breathe Apple. They won’t convert over to Android or Windows unless Apple is going out of business. And I can confidently say that Apple isn’t going out of business for a very long time.

Apple has even managed to convince a hardcore Android-head like myself to invest in the new iPad Pro and an iMac.

Now that’s branding.

And that’s the kind of brand I want to build. Don’t you?

If you are an entrepreneur, a leader, or in a position to influence the direction of your brand, this free course is for you.
 

You got 7 days of incredible value and a lot of learning ahead. I promise, you are going to take something away from each day and be able to apply it to your business. This course is designed to take this esoteric term called ‘branding’ and make it applicable, relatable, and functional for you.

But before you and I get to do that, I have to clear some things up. There’s a lot of misinformation out there. I’m sure you’ve Google’d ‘how to brand my business’ or ‘what is branding’ a few times. There’s a lot of information, but there’s only a handful of the right kind of information on branding available.

I’ve studied branding for the last 6 years.

I’ve read some of the best books, took some of the most amazing courses, and asked some of the industry pros how to go about not only defining what a brand is, but how to apply it to us little guys in entrepreneur land. I’ve worked with several clients in the year that I ran this business. And in that time I’ve learned how to take some of these bigger concepts and apply them to your business and my business.

We aren’t Starbucks. We’re not Apple. But there are fundamental building blocks and stepping stones to build the infrastructure you need that will support the weight of building a brand empire of that magnitude.

So let’s clear out some of the crap in our first day and get to comfortably know what a brand is.

Highlights, Quick Wins, and Takeaways:

  • Branding is not your logo. Branding is also not your identity (colors, fonts, etc)
  • Your brand is intangible. It is a collection of thoughts, feelings, emotions, memories, experiences, and stories. It’s an essence.
  • Your visual identity (also called brand identity), is what makes your brand tangible. It’s what allows us to physically interact with your brand.
  • You have to have both. You need a visual identity to be recognized. You need a brand in place so when the identity is recognized, a mental model is formed that makes a decision for us to engage with your brand.
 

SECTION ONE

The Most Common Misconceptions & Myths About Branding

 
 
I need branding.

Have you ever said that? If you run a business I’m going to guess you probably have. Because in some capacity we all need it. We all need to get the visual look for our business together. We want to look good. We want to come off professional on first sight.

But when you asked for it, I can be sure you meant the logo, fonts, colors, website, business cards and other materials we call marketing collateral.

Amirite? (Am-I-right said really fast).

If that’s you, and if you’re starting to feel a little guilt, then I have you right where I want you. But I’m not blaming you. I’m blaming the designers, the agencies and the studios who misinformed you by advertising, writing, or marketing “branding work” when they actually meant “brand identity design”.

And therein lies our issue.

Branding isn’t your colors, logos, and fonts. It’s more. So, so much more.

Branding is personal.

I couldn’t have said that any better than Yo Santosa.

Ever walk into one of your favorite stores in a mall and feel at home?

You look around and say to yourself, “These people get me. This feels like a community.” It’s how I feel when I walk into Spencer’s and surround myself with the other Power Ranger, Marvel and DC Comics nerds admiring the different assortments of hats, t-shirts, action figures and more. I feel at home.

I have this gut instinct that this store was created not for kids, but grown men and women who cannot get rid of their inner child.

Ask yourself: Why are you attracted to that store? Or that product? Or that service? Why are you exclusively loyal to certain brands?

Ever feel like something is just pulling your brain back and forth? You have this mental tug-of-war going on that’s tugging away at your brain, your heart, and your gut when you get around those brands you love.

That is what we call branding.

It’s the invisible threads that are pulling us into what feels like this larger-than-life, instinctual belief we share with our favorite brands.

It has nothing to do with colors or fonts.

It’s about how your brand speaks, looks, the emotions it tries to get you to feel, what it represents, what it stands for, how transparent it is, and it hinges on some aspect of the quality of the product being exceptional.

Because lets face it: you’re not buying a car that breaks down every 10 miles. That’s just not good for your brand. But you will buy a car that can go 1,000 miles without a single issue because it makes you feel safe and secured, and it enables you to trust that brand with your life.

We trust people and companies that believe what we believe.Simon Sinek

You have to stand for something.

You have to represent something bigger.

You have to align those beliefs and values with your core target audience to speak to their guts. Our guts have no ability to communicate words, but they can produce feelings. And if you can produce feelings that resonate with what we believe and make it instinctual, your brand will have tapped into something special.

And I’m going to show you how to do that.

But Ed. What about the colors and the fonts. Isn’t that branding?

 
 

SECTION TWO

Your Brand’s Identity Is Only a Small Facet of Branding

 
 
Is an arm a part of your body?
Is an arm a human being? Chris Do, The Skool

That just seals the deal right there.

Your logo isn’t your brand. It’s a mark. It identifies.

Your colors aren’t your brand. It’s an identification system.

Your fonts are also part of that identification system.

Keeping up with the analogy, a brand identity (also called visual identity) is the arm. Your brand is the human being. And I won’t make anymore of that distinction in this course.

That’s a whole new course within itself and I really want to focus on getting you to a point where you attract the right audience and appeal to their core, inner belief system as a brand.

But you have to get to a point where you are building a mental model.

 
 

SECTION THREE

Your Brand Is a Mental Model

 
 

Your brand’s mental model is where your target audience is going to store all the experiences, memories and stories that will move them to buy every single time.

In the upcoming days I’m going to give you the tools to build your brand’s mental model that’s going to live and replay in the minds of your target audience at every touch point.

But to get there we have to start with the basics. We have to do some matchmaking and create the perfect profile of a person who is going to fall in love with your brand, and I’ll be covering how to do this in Day Two. Once we’ve finished, we’ll be covering how to structure your Mission Statement, Vision Statement, and Core Values Statement to bridge the gap between that perfect target audience, your brand, and what you’re selling to put together your brand’s DNA.

If you don’t want that, don’t continue onto Day Two.

I’m serious!

If you don’t want to build an empire you can stop here. Day Two and beyond is going to be for you if you want to dominate. We’re getting into the business of domination here. We don’t compete. You have to be ready to go all in with what I’m getting ready to teach you. I need you to take out a pencil and a notebook. I need you to take notes. I need you to answer the questions that I ask you and really think about what you’re writing down.

If you’re in the business of competing, close the tab and go look at what the competition is doing, and slightly one up them. But if you want to completely blow it out the water, I need you to come with me and learn how you’re going to dominate.

Continue to Day Two