Viewing entries in
Branding

A Spicy Pursuit: What Specialty Is Missing In Your Marketplace?

IMG_1202 2.jpg

One of the best ways to stand out from the crowd in luxury or other real estate marketing is to find the underserved market niche, or filling a need in your marketplace..  In order to find it, one has to do quite a bit of research, because at first glance the market may look crowded. It is not unusual to assume that every niche in the real estate market is already taken.  Here is an example of a business that did just that.

In one of the markets we frequent here in Santa Barbara, the spice and seasonings aisle takes up over one quarter of the space. It is our source to find the rare spice or seasoning for a dish we are making.

Food experts advise that spices diminish in flavor over time. They are susceptible to heat, moisture and light.  Furthermore, they are sold in quantities that are too large for an average household to use up in a short period of time as they have at best one to two-year lifetime of flavor. 

Spicely Organics found the underserved market niche among the  biggest spice producers in the food industry.  Gelson’s Market added more shelf space to their spice aisle to accommodate them. Thanks to Spicely Organics you don’t have to go out of your way to assure yourself that certain spices may be a detriment to your diet because how they are produced. Everything is certified for every type of food concern. 

IMG_1201 2.jpg

Furthermore, they sell them in small batches, which means that you don’t have to worry about the shelf life of your purchase.  There is enough for two or three uses.  It may seem more expensive than that big bottle you are used to buying in terms of quantity, however, this beats the competition in terms of quality.  

In the realm of real estate, we have heard many success stories of agents who specialize in what may seem to many who will take any listing at any price crazy niches.  We can assure you that those who specialize in just condos, for instance, or just properties they personally like, or just historical properties, or just land are thriving regardless of the market conditions.  These agents researched what was missing in their marketplace and became experts, and the go to agents in those niches.  What  Specialty is missing in your marketplace?

Knowing Your Marketplace And The Mindset of Your Ideal Clients Can Assure Your Success

IMG_1344.jpg

If you want to have a successful luxury or other real estate practice, you must understand the mindset of your ideal clients and the intricacies of your marketplace that make them happy to live there.  When you take the time to really understand what they need and assure them that you can deliver the results they are after, you become the answer to their prayers.  Here is an example:

Recently, we visited Deer Valley, Utah with friends.  We went to The Market in Park City to stock up on provisions to munch on while watching the NBA Finals. We discovered a section devoted to exclusively to artisanal cheeses.  I (A) asked the cheese monger, Marcy, what was new and exciting? After taking the time to understand our tastes and preferences, she knew we were all fond of cheese and eager to learn.

dreamstime_xs_36339722.jpg

Marcy proceeded to tell us about her favorites that she was sure we would love too. One of them pictured above was an alpine blossom covered rind cheese made in Austria with milk from 15 brown Swiss cows in each herd.  They feed in the pasture of the Alps.  As the cheese ages, the rind is washed and is covered with the dried edible flowers and herbs from the surrounding Alpine Meadows.  You eat the cheese topped with a bit of flowers along with the rind. We all agreed that this was one of the best cheeses we ever tasted.  

Marcy also went out of her way tell us which crackers to buy and which went with each cheese for the 5 varieties we bought.  Then, as we were walking in the aisles, she ran over to tell us that we should buy a Rosé or a Riesling wine, to pair with our cheese selection.  

We loved her enthusiasm, her expertise and her extraordinary service. Naturally, we followed her advice in selecting wines. Marcy was the answer to our prayers. While out of town we look for experiences that are like touchstones to recall and share with others. It is only natural to refer our readers to her cheese department at The Market in Park City.

Are You A Jack-of-All-Trades, Master of None?

jackofalltrades.jpg

The NUMBER ONE mistake that luxury real estate marketing professionals make is trying to be all things to all people.  We understand that it is challenging to narrow your focus and concentrate on just one niche.   The trick is discovering the right niche for you, the one that has the potential to provide the financial return you want if you were to give it your 100% undivided attention.

Watch this 2-minute video and learn how being a Jack-of-All-Trades is the biggest marketing mistake. Being a generalist vs. a specialist is the most common marketing trap

A New & Different Perspective: Is It A Problem or A Puzzle?

dreamstime_xs_13046475.jpg

Consistently applying the fundamentals of good marketing and branding can go a long way in building your luxury real estate practice. But, if your quest is achieving and then sustaining market leadership in your chosen niche, you need to do things differently and better than your competitors. You need to think differently to out-think your competition. And, that requires a new and different perspective.

The term, “Thinking out of the box” is a phrase that has been used so much that it has almost become cliché, the antithesis of original thinking. We have been looking for a new way to express this concept in our strategic branding practice.

Then, last Sunday, in our mastermind discussion, our friend shared this quote with us. “I don’t have any problems, I have puzzles”-Quincy Jones (musician and record producer). At first this seemed like a cool concept. But, after thinking about it for a while it also seemed quite profound.

Most people think of a problem as a matter or situation that is unwelcome or harmful and needing to be dealt with and overcome. However, if you can make the shift to viewing your situation as a puzzle your can instantly shift your perspective.  

A puzzle is a game or toy designed to test ingenuity and knowledge.  Can you feel the immediate shift in attitude that takes place when you view the same situation as a puzzle?

When you think in terms of having a problem you often introvert, it becomes part of you; it burdens you and becomes part of your identity. When you solve a puzzle you extrovert and the situation becomes objective vs. subjective. You see it outside of yourself. As Quincy says, “The moment you see your challenges as a puzzle & not a problem...you've found your way out”. 

Throwback Thursday: Which Niche Can Make You Rich Part 2

As we promised last week on our Throwback Thursday post, here is the next installment of our video course, which was inspired by webinars we had done both for Active Rain and Zillow on the subject of niches. Our entire course can be found on our website if you are curious to see it all at once.  Here is part 2 of the course.  We named this video:

The Most Powerful Law of Niche Marketing

Mind-share precedes market share. Focus on capturing MIND SHARE FIRST.  Market share will follow. It must follow according to this law. Click the image above to watch the video. 

Enjoy!


 

The Precious Value of Human Interaction VS Digital Solutions

IMG_1143.jpg

If you think that Human Interaction is being upstaged by digital solutions, think again. Recently a friend of ours saw a sign on a home and called the number on the sign.  She listened to a recording that sent her to an agent directory. The sign did not have the agent’s name or phone number on it, because the company does not allow agent riders.  

She tried to get connected to the receptionist (was not sure there was one) and gave up.  She was frustrated and vowed never to have any dealings with that company.  And all her friends heard about it like we did.

All of us have had what seemed as interminable moments on the phone getting through the maze of automated systems, just to speak to a human.  When we get to the human, we are even more frustrated because we learn that we need to speak to a supervisor to resolve our issues.  We are then placed on hold, and sometimes we are disconnected. 

Accenture, one of the leading management consultants firms, found in one of their studies that 52 percent of consumers switch due to poor customer service.  They estimated the cost to businesses at $1.6 trillion.  On the real estate scene, it is not unusual to find the voice mailbox full, or the example in our first paragraph.

This is due to the fact that most companies assume that digital-only customers are the most profitable, and customer service is an expensive service.  When they do have customer service, it is usually outsourced to other countries, which often creates more problems.  

Many of these customers (44%) resort to venting on social media channels about the poor service they received.  Sometimes, companies respond to the vent and make things right.  However, keep in mind that quite a bit of damage has been done by the venting. 

Accenture’s study found that 83% of those customers value human interaction and want more of it. They are less likely to switch companies when they have easy access to human interaction, as well as recommend the companies to friends and associates.

Digital solutions have made life easier when you stop and think about it, however we need to balance our reliance on it.  The be-all- and end-all is human interaction. Its value is precious. Institute that in your practice, and your clients will remember you and refer you.

This post is inspired our Internet provider.  Pictured above is the envelope our bill came in.  We are delighted with this change. Now when we have a question or problem with our service, we can actually speak to someone live.  It is so much easier than listening to fix it electronic instructions or going to their website.  It also takes less time.  

Branding Moments: Can You State How You Are Different In 14 Words?

IMG_1140.jpg

If you read our posts on a regular basis, you know that one of the most important selling points of a brand is to instantly convey what sets it apart from the crowd.  Palazzo Della Torre from the city of Allegrini in the Veneto region was able to do it in 14 Words at their Point Of Sale display.

Can You State How You Are Different in 14 Words?

Throwback Thursday Series Real Estate Marketing: How Pick Your Niche!

In 2014, we are asked by then Trulia/ Active Rain to present a webinar for the members on Niche marketing. Shortly thereafter, we did it again for Zillow.  That experience spurred a video course that is part of our website.  Although, many of the examples in this course pertain to the luxury real estate industry, the lessons learned can and should be applied to any local professional practice or local business that specializes in serving affluent consumers.  Each video segment is just two-to-four minutes and can be conveniently viewed at your pace on your computer, tablet or smartphone. 

Here is the introductory video and Part 1.

In this course you will learn:

  • How to pick the right niche for YOU
  • How to harness the power of focus through niche marketing
  • How to out-think your competition and achieve top-of-mind status in your niche
  • How to strike the right balance between high tech and high touch in your niche

We hope you enjoy the course and we expect you'll walk away eager to dominate your own niche!

We will add a video each Thursday as for your viewing pleasure, and if you are eager to learn more faster you can always visit to our website.

Branding Moments: Self Expression VS The Aesthetics of Your Marketplace!

car1.jpg

Capturing attention and standing out from your competition are both very important when crafting your personal brand as a luxury or other real estate marketing professional. However, the two most treacherous traps that luxury real estate marketing professionals fall into when attempting to brand themselves are these: 

  1. Factoring out the aesthetic expectations of their target market thinking that self expression is all that is needed
  2. Factoring out their personality, values and personal aesthetic preferences to please their target market.

Either one of these extremes is a recipe for failure in personal branding.  

Certainly, you have heard the expression “beauty is in the eyes of the beholder”.  There is no question that aesthetics is a subjective value judgment.  To some contemporary art design and architecture is the ultimate expression of the human spirit, while traditionalists see no value in it at all.  But, when it comes to branding, the entire exercise is to make the subjective, objective. Brand comes first and then in alignment with aesthetics

If you work in a conservative marketplace this objective fact must be respected if market leadership is your quest. Too much shock value may keep you out of the winner’s circle. The objective measurement is whether or not you are attracting the number of clients that you need to reach your goal. 

There are ways to express yourself to a conservative audience without offending them and still feel that you have not compromised your sense of self-expression.  Find a way to express yourself in your personal life if outrageousness is your “thing”, like the owner of the luxury car (Mercedes) pictured above.   

But, trying to please everyone is impossible.  Trying to be all things to all people is likewise futile.  Leaving YOU out of the branding equation eliminates perhaps the most important key to branding success: authenticity.

When we conduct a strategic brand analysis in our consulting practice, we dial into all of these factors in the quiz above to establish our client’s “brand signal”.  It is like finding the right combination when all of the tumblers click into place and the brand “unlocks”. 

Once you amplify your authentic brand signal and reach your target market through focused communication, those who resonate with that signal with naturally gravitate to it.  Therefore, it is essential to place brand before beauty.  You must sharply differentiate yourself from your competitor and you must do so with a wow factor.  But, with aesthetics, you must also strike the perfect balance between your personal tastes and the values of your target market.

Branding Moments: What is A Brand Extension?

IMG_0147.jpg

A brand extension is when you take a familiar brand name, and use it to brand another product category. It helps launch a new product. Here is a perfect example.

Last time we were in Trader Joe’s we noticed that two-buck chuck (Charles Shaw wine, the brand Trader Joe’s popularized) had extended its brand.  Pictured above is the four-buck version.  This version is certified organic, has a new-fangled “Helix” twist off cork that looks like a Champagne cork, and a new label.

The Trader Joe’s reviews of the Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir and Rosé state that the wines are “delightfully drinkable.”  We have not tried it.  If you do, let us know what you think, Cheers!

Branding Moment: Newton’s Folly—Smart or Silly?

IMG_0963 2.jpg

This bright colorful brand caught our attention.  Newton’s Folly is a hard cider. The apple falling on Newton’s was his “ah-ha” moment.  He understood the concept of gravitational pull, or what keeps the moon from crashing into the earth.   

In most branding, a reference to Newton implies intelligence and the importance of discovery. Apple used Newton in its early branding, as have colleges such as Keene State College. 

The word folly means lack of good sense, or being foolish. In architecture, a folly is a structure in a garden such as a tower built solely for amusement. This word does not imply intelligence or scientific discovery.

In your opinion, it this brand smart or silly?  If you enjoy drinking hard cider would you buy Newton’s Folly based on the brand?

Are You The Best Kept Secret In Your Marketplace?

dreamstime_xs_92980370.jpg

As a luxury or other real estate marketing professional, have you ever asked yourself any of these questions?

1. Why am I cash rich some months and cash poor the next?
2. Why are some of my competitors, who have less talent and less marketing savvy, getting the lion’s share of the business?
3. I close at least 70% of the business I get. Why is it so hard to get more business?
4. Why am I the best kept secret in my marketplace?

If you have been pondering these questions you most likely are a generalist in your marketplace akin to a general practitioner in the medical field.  However, if you specialized in a particular style of home, in a particular marketplace, or in a particular price range, you would be known for that specialty.

However, if you want to become the standout in your marketplace, you have to stand for something, you have to have a brand or an identity in your marketplace. You cannot afford to be just another real estate agent in the pack. It lessens your value.  

 The biggest struggle most luxury and other real estate agents have is not standing out in the minds of their target market.  That is the very thing that those who discount their commissions are promoting and emphasizing.  These firms succeed thanks the majority of real estate agents do not take time to discover their identity.Instead, they continue to struggle and complain about those “big, bad” aggregators who are “taking away their business!

To stand out you must stand for something that is remarkable. This gives people the opportunity to promote you to others. The missing ingredient that personal branding offers is making it easy for other to tell others about YOU! If you are blending in you are missing out on the leverage of word-of-mouth marketing which personal branding accomplishes when it is well executed. The lack of a personal brand is what is making your job more difficult than it has to be.

If you no longer want to blend in and be the best-kept secret in your marketplace, you must become remarkable. Start by asking yourself these new questions: How am I extraordinary, amazing, notable, outstanding, noteworthy, significant, incredible and astonishing?

Become the best-known agent in your specialty in your marketplace. It may take time to develop your specialty, but in the long run, it will pay off. You will even find that other real estate agents are sending you business because you are the best at what you do.  

Are You the best kept secret in your marketplace?

Do You Speak “Ubuntu”? A Defining or Branding Moment

IMG_0339 2.jpg

Recently, we came across the term “Ubuntu”.  It was a defining and inspiring moment for us. It reveals another aspect of the wisdom of kindness.

Ubuntu is a word in the Bantu language of the Nguni tribe in Africa.  In the broad sense of the word, it translates as humanity, human kindnessHow I treat you defines me. I am not defined by what I have, but how I interact with you

Ubuntu in the broader sense also refers to the awareness of our inherent connection with each other.  It is akin to the ripple effect, that if one is rude to another, the rudeness will be passed on to the next person and will continue to escalate.  It is so easy to observe in every day life. 

Ubuntu is part of South Africa’s Interim Constitution created in 1993.  “There is a need for understanding but not vengeance, a need for reparation but not for retaliation, a need for Ubuntu but nor for victimization.”

Desmond Tutu wrote a wonderful definition for Ubuntu in his book No Future Without Forgiveness,

    “Ubuntu is very difficult to render into a Western language. It speaks of the very essence of being human. When we want to give high praise to someone we say, ‘Yu, u nobunto’; ‘Hey so-and-so has ubuntu.’ Then you are generous, you are hospitable, you are friendly and caring and compassionate. You share what you have. It is to say, ‘My humanity is inextricably bound up in yours.’ We belong in a bundle of life.

Next time, you feel like insulting or getting even with anyone (no matter how much you think they deserve it), take a moment and think about Ubuntu.  Is this how you want to be defined or branded?

How To Achieve Market Leadership In An Emerging Luxury Market: Case Study

CASE STUDY.png

Many real estate agents, teams and independent companies have asked us this questions:

"How can you help me (our team or company) get a foothold in the luxury end of the business and ultimately become the market leadership in a top-tier price range niche?" 

Here is the 2-Minute "Brand Makeover" Video Case Study of Front Porch Realty that answers this question. We help Laura Moody, the broker/owner position her firm to be the dominate player in her North Carolina emerging luxury marketplace. We can help you get there too!

CLICK ABOVE TO WATCH THE VIDEO

Here is what Laura had to say about her experience of working with us:

From my very first phone call to Napa Consultants, I knew I had made the right choice for my growing independent real estate company! Ron and Alexandra inspired and awed me every step of the way with their knowledge and expertise in the field of real estate marketing. Their visit across the country to my town was spectacular and I felt like we were friends before they even got here. They not only elevated my brand, they gave me so much insight discovering my niche. I truly gained so much more from them than I ever imagined I would.

Ron and Alexandra were super patient with me and throughout our entire process made me feel like their desire was to meet and exceed my expectations. Thank you Ron and Alexandra, from the bottom of my heart!
— Laura Moody, Owner Front Porch Realty

Sing For Your Supper: Out Think, VS Out-Spending Your Competition

 Paris Opera  House, Grand Staircase Photo by Nicole Brown. Dreamstime

Paris Opera  House, Grand Staircase Photo by Nicole Brown. Dreamstime

Perhaps one of the most important principles that luxury real estate marketing professionals need to understand about personal branding for real estate agents is this: Out-think, not out-spend your competition. If you want to out-smart your competition find something, some niche that you can do better than anyone else in your marketplace. 

Choose an arena in which you can become the brand that matches your personality, and where you can express your passion. Finding that niche/brand may take time, however in the long run it will pay dividends, and make work fun. Don’t waste your time or your money becoming a “me-too” in a niche that your competitor dominates.

Here is an example.  One of the agents we spent time with had graduated from a prestigious university with a Master in Fine Arts in Opera.  Opera was her passion although she knew that her voice was not of the caliber that would catapult her on stage as a star.  In our conversations with her, we suggested that she investigate the opera community in her marketplace.   This metropolitan city is known for its passion for opera. 

She started volunteering both back stage and in fund raising.  The majority of the donors lived in the exact market place she wanted to dominate.  By volunteering she became known as the go to real estate agent for that opera loving community and their sphere of influence. She also was given chorus parts in some of the productions.  

As a luxury real estate marketing professional, the size of your advertising budget does not guarantee your success if you fail to form a strong emotional connection with your target market, whether it be consumers or referring real estate agents from outside of your marketplace. Win the hearts and minds of your target market by having them identify with who you are.  Remember, people like doing business with people like themselves!

And in the immortal words of Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart,

Sing for your supper, and you'll get breakfast;
Songbirds always eat
If their song is sweet to hear.
Sing for your luncheon, and you'll get dinner -
Dine with wine of choice
If romance is in your voice

Now is time to sing for your supper, and you'll get breakfast.
Songbirds are not dumb;
They never buy a crumb of bread,
It is said...
So sing, and you'll be fed, oh yeah -
Just sing and you'll be fed.

 

Get Real With Your Luxury Real Estate With Pull Marketing VS Push Marketing!

If you are tired of unwanted digital ads and unsolicited email marketing, join the crowd. Most of us do not like having advertisements or information “pushed” at us.  

The ideal marketing relationship between a customer or subscriber to a digital newsletter is “pull marketing” vs. push marketing”.  Keep this in mind when you think of sending out your own luxury real estate e-newsletter.

Screen Shot 2018-04-06 at 2.12.06 PM.png

Pull marketing is information with advertisements that is sent to you because you are asking for it.  Sometime you ask for a “free report” and then you are bombarded forevermore with a daily, automatic “drip” campaign (as in Chinese Torture) chock full of unwanted information, products and services.  Where is that Unsubscribe button?

Can you think of an e-newsletter that you actually look forward to receiving regularly?  Here is an example of our favorite pull marketing e-newsletter from Santa Barbara Fish Market (pictured above). 

Every week we discover what has recently been caught right off our coast or what has been flown in fresh from around the world. There are always weekly specials and great recipes.

3cefc4d8-0170-4bb6-8001-26650e1a8355.jpg

 

We absolutely love to go down to our Harbor, breathe in the sea air, hear the sounds of the ocean and also pick up some seafood for dinner. Included is a recipe link for Black Cod with Swiss Chard, Olives, and Lemon, (pictured above).

Recently, we were thinking of going out for lunch and opted to purchase a couple of Maine lobster tails, instead. It may sound extravagant, but each tail was only $10 with our “members” discount of 10%.  We made a delicious lobster salad for a fraction of the price of going to a restaurant for a delicacy like lobster salad with tax and tip. 

85e9646b-5110-4b24-a9a6-118e64550c0a.png

Another “hook” that keeps us coming back is the “Fresh Catch Wish List”. We cannot wait to get our “wish fish”: Fresh Alaskan King Crab and lump crabmeat flown in from Louisiana. We are blissfully on the hook and we do not feel like we are “caught”.

The moral of the story is: get real with your luxury real estate email marketing. “Reel” us in with pull marketing!

HOW TO GET YOUR MARKETING MESSAGE ACROSS WITH 3D VIDEO TECHNOLOGY – PART2

Bridging the Imagination Gap In Marketing New Construction

floorplan-cc-theatre.jpg

In Part 1 of this article series we noted that one of the biggest challenges that luxury real estate professional face when marketing new construction, whether it is a single-family residence or an entire master planned community is bridging the imagination gap. Most prospective buyers need to see the finished product before they are willing to hand over dollars to reserve a home or a condominium unit. 

You may recall that people were lined up to reserve a Tesla Model 3 way before actual production. But, the Model S and the SUV already were on the road. To make it easy for buyers to imagine what it would be like to live in the Residence Club in Ocean Reef Florida we collaborated with an award winning videographer and also one of the top international 3D animation firms to create a very compelling visual experience. See the 3D video on this page: http://residenceclubor.com

Interactive Floor Plans

To help make the experience even more immersive we also created two interactive floor plan maps. The first one allows prospective buyers to see and compare the floor plans for each unit. See the interactive floor plan on this page: http://residenceclubor.com/design

Residence_Club_Concierge_Clubhouse.png

The second interactive feature enables them to see photos of the each of the lifestyle features incorporated in the18,000 square foot Concierge Clubhouse, such as the spa, the theatre, and the bistro. See the interactive floor plan on this page: http://residenceclubor.com/concierge

Together, the interactive floor plan maps and the 3D video create a method for bridging the imagination gap. These elements are a necessity, if you plan on marketing a new project prior to completion of construction. 

Brand Strategy Involves Using The Right Colors Like A Sunflower Does!

dreamstime_xs_95491006.jpg

The importance of communicating with color when it comes to your brand identity should not be underestimated or taken lightly. It is part of the brand strategy. Just because you love a certain color does not necessarily mean, it should reign supreme in your brand color scheme.   Take a lesson from the Sunflower pictured above.

There is so much more to learn in terms of color.  The photo above clearly illustrates the many yellow hues in a sunflower.  It is not just one yellow, it takes so much more to fully communicate its essence.  The brand, sunflower, is a combination of yellow-based colors in varying hues.

Colors trigger emotions. When we look at a sunrise or sunset, the range of colors displayed evokes a feeling of joy, of awe, romance or even a sad or happy memory.  Colors communicate texture, smooth or rough through proportion or a different hue of the same color.  Colors evoke attraction or repulsion depending on the perception of the viewer.

When expressing reliability, most companies rely on the families of dark blues, navy, gray, and blue toned reds to communicate genuineness, solidity and reliability. You have no doubt heard the expression “true blue”.  For instance, there are three different real estate company signs side by side in a townhouse development in town.  From a distance, it is hard to distinguish one from the other.

Two of them are big box companies. It is not uncommon for big companies to use the colors of “reliability.”  One is an independent broker who wants to look like the other two, or a “me too” look.  All three have different hues of blue and white as part of their signage.  

However, that combination by itself also says stodgy, old fashioned, slow to embrace change because of the usual layers of bureaucracy. Although the independent broker is progressive in nature, he has done himself a disservice in our opinion by mimicking the big boxes and confusing his potential clients.

What should be taken into account when it comes to color selection are the environmental color signals in your real estate market place. You also choose the colors that would attract the clients to your style of doing business. 

In selecting a combination of colors to work with, take a lesson from the sunflower. When all is said and done, take time to explore the range of colors to match your brand strategy, and communicate your essence. 

Branding Moment: Is Your Brand Name Easy to Recall?

Print_ad_for_Real_Estate.JPG

The selection of your personal or company brand name is extremely important in the real estate game.  The idea is to make it as easy as possible for people to recall your name. If you can get your target market to make the association of your brand name with your brand category, your strategic differentiator and the benefits your brand provides in just one impression, you can accelerate your word-of-mouth advertising.

One of the biggest branding mistakes that real estate agents and companies make in selecting their brand name is to use initials. Unless you already are very well known with your full name, it is wise to steer clear of initials because they are very easy to forget. Kentucky Fried Chicken spent millions of advertising dollars over years to get their brand to top-of-mind status in the fried chicken niche before they distilled it down to KFC. The same applies to IBM, 3M and JFK!

Here is an example of a brand name that sticks in your mind after just one impression, which is the ultimate goal of picking the right name: Howell’n Good Doggie Dentals.  The ad depicted above is a perfect example of outstanding branding and advertising, one of the best we have ever seen.

Why this ad works perfectly:

Brand Name: First, the brand is a take off of the owner’s name Charmaine Howell.  A howl is a cry of pain or fear or amusement. The brand category is also cleverly conveyed in the name: Doggie Dentals. It rhymes, which makes it fun and easy to remember.

Strategic Differentiator: Clear communication of the strategic differentiator:  Veterinarian Supervised and No Anesthesia

Benefits: Clear articulation of benefits: Safer and More Affordable. Visual results: Before & After photos.

Logo:  Name and strategic differentiator distill in a well-designed symbol and/or font that conveys the brand’s personality.

Do you want to accelerate your word-of-mouth advertising? Make your brand name easy to recall! 

The Power And Luxury of Laughter!

laughingbuddha.jpg

Having a sense of humor and being able to laugh easily is a must for a luxury or any other real estate marketing professional.  Given the nature of the business which often involves a life changing decision and the myriad of emotions that accompany this decision, it is important to sometimes bring relief to a tense situation by introducing a lighter side.  The importance of laughter cannot be underestimated.

"The most wasted of all days is one without laughter." e. e. cummings

When something is both rare and desirable it becomes a luxury.  Laughter is a luxury regardless of economic conditions. Being joyful is the state of abundance. That is why we love the idea of emphasizing LOL (a.k.a. laugh out loud) as the abbreviated version of the Language of Luxury.

Your sense of humor is one of the most powerful tools you have to make certain that your daily mood and emotional state support good health.” ~ Paul E. McGhee, Ph.D. 

Laughter also creates bonds in teams.  Teams who share a familiar joke (“you had to be there, to appreciate how funny it was!”) perform better in stressful situations.  Emotional laughter releases beneficial hormones which help you maintain a positive attitude.

“Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand. Mark Twain

As grownups, we tend to be serious, and even those who feel they have a great sense of humor are not laughing enough.  A recent study revealed a startling fact.  Children up to pre-school age laugh about 300 times a day.  Adults on the average laugh about 15 times a day. 

"Hearty laughter is a good way to jog internally without having to go outdoors." Norman Cousins

Wishing you all an abundance of laughs today...