A Brand to Die For

I am often asked, “What does it take to create a successful marketing campaign?” The reality, at the heart of it all, is the client’s brand essence; how that brand is represented and how to and perceived by the market. All successful marketing and advertising strategies spring forth from this basic tenet – brand essence.

What qualities does the brand stand for? What can the brand do for me, as a consumer, or member? How can the brand enrich my life or otherwise provide me value?

These are some of the questions that consumers silently ask themselves as they interact with the messages and touchpoints that are related to your brand.

But what does it take to create a brand that people identify with, support or spend their money on? How does one create a brand…well, to die for?

As a Social Intelligence Architect, I must continually hone my skills for the benefit of my clients. This means always advancing my understanding of social and communication dynamics. As a result, I can create effective messaging scenarios derived from a strong brand essence. The result is targeted traffic and ultimately sales, for my clients.

The agencies that represent entities like Nike, Target, Dell, Microsoft and countless others understand social and communication dynamics and deliver prime examples of successful brands. But other brands which you probably wouldn’t even consider (yet are perhaps even more influential), can illustrate the power that a brand can hold and deliver within a given marketplace.

The Most Powerful Brands You Would Never Think Of

You wouldn’t normally think of the Hell’s Angels, the Latin Kings or the Mexican Mafia as “brands,” but they most certainly are. In fact, these brands exhibit some of the strictest brand management strategies in existence and it’s paid-off for these entities in event the most turbulent of times.

The Hell’s Angels, for example, are a legitimate California business entity known as the Hells Angels Motorcycle Corporation (HAMC); replete with corporate bylaws and yes, a very well-known brand. HAMC, in the past has brought suit against market giants like the Walt Disney World Company over infringement of their brand. HAMC is very strict – even with their own members – as to how the HAMC logo and related, accompanying patches are to be arranged and displayed. Simply to be allowed to don the coveted official leather vest with logo is even an arduous process that only a select few are offered. And even then, the HAMC logo and patches must be worn in adherence with the corporate guidelines.

The Latin Kings brand is a gold colored 5-point crown on a black background. The 5-points and the black and gold colors all signify specific attributes about the brand (its essence). The 5-points, indeed, represent love, respect, sacrifice, honor, and obedience. Gold represents the sun and a bright future, while the black represents the past.

The Mexican Mafia’s brand is an open hand with the letter inside the palm. The M, of course, signifies the Mexican Mafia and is its established moniker; known and respected the world over.

Each of these organizations has developed a fierce following from both “internal” members and “external” admirers. Each has a brand management system (and a related code of conduct) which ensures their members utilize and represent the brands in only the ways specified by the entities themselves. Deviation from these brand management and conduct guidelines can result in death.

Truly, these are brands that people die for. But why?

In no way am I condoning gangland-style tactics or illicit activities, nor am I suggesting the use of violence, fear, or intimidation in your customer loyalty programs and brand acceptance strategies.

All sociological arguments aside, there remains an interestingly powerful component to these brands. Never mind that inculcated members have replaced their allegiances to God, country and family with allegiance to the brand and all that it encompasses. The real take-away from this striking analogy is the weight that each of these brands carry to those who are not gang members, but yearn to be.

The answer to creating a brand that people identify with, support or spend their money on is born out of a necessity that it helps to fulfill. In the case of these gang examples, their brands evolved to represent solutions to their “consumers’” needs; the need to be accepted, the need to have shelter, the need for protection, etc…

What Are The Benefits Of Personal Branding

Benefits Of Personal Branding

There are many benefits of personal branding within any business venture. From the onset, of your business creating a brand/logo should be a priority to ensure you stand out and separate yourself from the masses over other related businesses.

Researching multi-million or even multi-billion dollar industries, personal branding is an application that has been proven and shown remarkable results. As an example regardless of the owner of franchises such as McDonald’s, the golden arches remain constant and recognizable to throughout all McDonald’s worldwide. The golden arches have become the brand of the business. These same concepts should be the applied within your business plan.

Personal Branding For Success

In order to create a strong business brand utilize the thought process of building strong brands. Put a considerable amount of time into selecting your brand. Once you’ve determined your brand image stick with it, this is key in the importance of branding yourself for success. It is essential for your business, to create a positive image in the minds of potential customers. Personal Branding Why Should You Brand There are some key reasons in regards to “why brand”? Some of the main reasons you should choose personal branding are:

to build a strong presence
put and image/face to the company
create “likeability” surrounding your brand
define your business’ purpose
differentiate you/your brand from the numerous others in your niche
Personal Branding Establishing Yourself As An Expert In Your Niche

On a daily basis, there are several new businesses opening both online and offline, in either circumstance strong personal branding is essential to your presence, visibility and success. Creating your business, be sure you are branding yourself and not the company product you represent. The main reason for doing so is if you want to add another product, you don’t have to begin to create a new brand. Establishing yourself as an expert within your area will allow you the ability to offer more than one service or product. As long as you stay within your niche, you will continue to brand yourself as an expert within that field.

Personal Branding Through Syndication

Once you’ve established your brand image, you must begin to create traffic to your site. One of the easiest and most cost effective ways is through article marketing for SEO (search engine optimization). Each article should then go through a process of content syndication. There are a couple of tools to utilize to make this process as automated as possible. These tools are:

OnlyWire – “send your content to the top social sites with the push of a single button”
TribePro -” a simple and powerful tool that allows your message to be shared across unlimited social networks without lifting a finger.”
Be sure to brand yourself and not the company when creating your online or offline presence.

Black and White Photography As a Statement in the Art World

Black and white photography, or monochrome photography, occupies a unique place in the world of art and the visual media. It has been around for almost two centuries now, and it still has a little bit of down-looking from the art world. Even though the monochromatic tradition has been around for a couple of centuries, it can be traced back to 6000 years in history when we start to take ink and carbon works into the wider frame. In terms of art itself, photography is very young, so it is just a mere matter of time for it to be excelled into a greater state in the art world.Here is a great fact that will help answering the question why many people diverge between choosing color or monochrome in their work: monochrome photography enhances composition, therefore it gives a stronger message by subtracting the distraction that color inherently has.Composition is a much more complex concept that goes beyond the very well-known rule of thirds. Elements in composition include the following:· Lines· Shapes· Forms· Simplification· Negative space· RhythmAll of these elements aid the photographer to compose a message into a much more pleasant or aesthetic view of reality. The message is something that only exists in the fraction of a second the photographer decides to include into his camera settings. The message is part of the moment that the photographer decides to capture. Therefore, the message is presented better rather the realism that accurate color can render. Color photography is great for many purposes, but when talking about message, its instant punch is quite softer than when it is presented to the viewer in a monochromatic format. The much accepted theory behind this statement, is that color pretends to achieve a greater grade of realism, and that black and white turn apart and pretend to see things differently, and by removing color we have:

Something different from reality

A greater message by removing the distraction that color gives
Another magnificent aspect about black and white photography, is that it has been a very democratic and almost generous medium. Developing black and white film is a work of art and creativity in a much larger scale if compared to color film. The thing is that black and white film can resist much more severe changes in the development procedure (temperature, time of development, time of fixation, etc.) and color film is much more precise work, it is a more delicate chemistry if you like to view into the chemical line. And this was somehow inherited in the digital format by allowing black and white photography to endure more extreme settings when contrasting than color photography. Color photography starts to get weird looks much earlier than black and white when cranking up the controls in RAW development. Even with printing, black and white photography has a richer history than color photography thanks to papers and printing processes.