Friday, June 15

Motivational Speaker Branding in 4 Steps 

You have a name for your business and have even determined your focus or niche. Great!

Now, how do you let others know about you? How do you market your products and services to your chosen audience in a way that they will understand and relate to?

It all comes down to something called branding. Here is a simple 4-step process for defining your brand.

So, what exactly is a brand? A brand can be thought of as a set of perceptions a prospective (or existing) client gets when they hear the name of your coaching practice or see the logo you will be designing to represent it.

The important thing to remember here is that it's not the same as the actual products or services you sell. Instead, it's a feeling a person has.

STEP #1: Solidifying Your Target Market
As you did when you launched your business, start by identifying your target market. Who are they specifically? What demographics can you identify about them? What's their age? Gender? Race? Marital status? Income level? Where do they live? Work?

Then try and go one step further to see if you can identify some lifestyle characteristics for them as well. Where do these people hang out? What do they like to read? What movies do they enjoy? What restaurants do they eat at? What associations do they belong to?

All of these factors can tell you even more about your target audience such as what's important enough to them that they will spend both time and money on it.

Can you use this information to sell your products and services in a unique or interesting way? Take some time to think about it.

If you are struggling with this exercise and just can't seem to come up with anything, try focusing on the individuals you have coached in the past or are coaching now. Are they your ideal client? If so, why? What characteristics are you drawn to that make them an ideal client for you? If they aren't your ideal client, that's OK too. Thinking about why they might not be ideal can lead to some insights too.

STEP #2: What?
Once you have your target market defined as specifically as possible, consider the key message(s) you'd like them to remember when they hear the name of your business or see your logo. What word or words do you want them to instantly recall? When thinking about a company such as Harley-Davidson, it's pretty easy to identify a couple of words that represent this brand, such as freedom or independence.

STEP #3: How?
Descriptive words (like the ones you may have come up with in step #2) typically have a feeling or emotion associated with them and these feelings or emotions can be captured through the use of symbols, images or even the colors you select.

Again, thinking back to Harley-Davidson, the colors they chose are black and orange. Black conveys a sense of power, strength and independence, and the orange is a unique color orange (some say the specific mix is a trade secret). Color is just one way that Harley-Davidson stirs up what they want its riders to feel when they are cruising down the highway on a motorcycle made by the company.

How do you want your prospective clients to feel when they see the name or logo associated with your business? Think about how symbols, images and colors can convey those emotions and feelings for you.

STEP #4: Put it all together
Now comes the fun part! Working with a graphic designer (try someplace like elance.com), pull everything together - the key message(s), symbols, images, colors, feelings and emotions - into a logo for your business.

Once you have some ideas drawn up, test them out on your clients, friends, or R & D Team. What impressions do they get when they see your logo? How does it make them feel? Would they hire you based on what they see?

Depending on feedback you receive, make any necessary changes and keep testing until you are satisfied with the results.

Using this basic 4-step process, you can create a powerful brand that will be easy to recognize and remember, excites you when you are talking about it to prospective clients and will virtually sell itself as it conveys the feelings and emotions you want it to.

Tip: If it excites you, and excites your potential clients, you have a winner!

Good luck and I am looking forward to seeing your unique brand on the Internet soon!

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