A recent study conducted by researchers at Notre Dame, the University of Kentucky, and Penn State found that using brand- name gear can provide a noticeable placebo effect that could boost performance. In other words: If you’ve ever felt like you give better presentation when wearing an expensive designer suit, it might not be your imagination.
Sales and marketing can feel like a never ending marathon — as soon as you reach the finish line with one lead, there’s another sale to close. Even when all your hard work results in new sales, many businesses fumble when they pass the baton to engaging and welcoming the new client. The lack of a solid onboarding strategy can result in a rocky start to your relationship with clients, increased requests for refunds and decreased confidence in your business.
If brand is more than a logo, why are most brand books little more than a style guide? A style guide isn’t going to empower your employees to deliver on your brand’s promise, guard your brand’s differentiators, or make everyday decisions in line with your brand strategy.
It’s been quite a year! Now that the champagne has been popped, gone flat and you’ve had time to recover, take a look at our most widely read local stories from 2015:
The process of identifying a problem and building a system for the solution doesn’t have to be difficult, time consuming or expensive — but it does require your attention. The good news is that you don’t have to do it alone.
Every well-meaning small business owner is capable of inflicting wounds that stifle drive, trust, employee engagement and motivation. Maybe not as blatantly as calling out incompetence, but neglect and disrespect through lack of communication de-motivates too. Worst of all, we don’t even know we are doing it.
It’s no secret Starbucks’ holiday cuptroversy has created a lot of extra buzz for them this season. By removing the ‘“symbols of the season,” the coffee giant is being accused of going overboard to be politically correct. This new, bold design ignited an overblown conspiracy theory that got the internet chattering. But instead of mourning the loss of kitschy graphics, we are applauding Starbucks on their brand’s success.
One year ago, the husband-and-wife team of Roshaun and Maritza Davis opened their Display: California pop-up retail store, selling holiday gifts from about 30 artists in the Sacramento area. They called it, “The HollaDays.” The “HollaDays” are back at the shop’s location on 34th Street and Broadway in Sacramento’s Oak Park neighborhood. But Display isn’t simply a seasonal gift shop.
Sometimes, a real no-brainer, problem-solver of a product can crash and burn spectacularly upon entering the market. This isn’t limited to the Pepsi Clears of the world, where sheer ridiculousness doomed the idea from the start: According to Nielsen data, 85 percent of new consumer packaged goods will fail within two years. Marketing snafus, bad luck and timing aside, pitfalls in the process of product design are often to blame. Catching oneself before blundering into them takes a conscious effort, as several local designers and makers illustrate.
The words “brand” and “branding” are so often used interchangeably with “marketing” and “logo” that it’s easy to feel befuddled by the difference. So, what’s the actual difference between your brand, your marketing and your logo?