Our assignment for Day 2 of Blogging 201: Auditing Your Brand is filled with a ton (trust me I weighed it) of information on creating your brand. Now that it’s been a couple of days and I’ve had a chance to click all the links and read through all the material provided it’s time to start working on it. So far, I’ve updated my tagline and changed the header image to make it more customized. The header images are two photographs I took in 2013 that are still a couple of my favorites, I’ll share the full images at some point. Many of the other suggestions I will work through over the coming days, and probably months.
I decided to do a little additional reading about branding all over the web, some blogs, some scholarly articles, some magazine articles. I’ve always been a little bit of a marketing nerd. Merriam-Webster defines “brand” as a mark made by burning with a hot iron to attest manufacture or quality or to designate ownership. A printed mark made for similar purposes. Another definition is a class of goods identified by name as the product of a single firm or manufacturer.
I don’t know about you, but I’m not much on a screaming hot branding iron touching me, and this isn’t printed, so we’ll go with a digital mark.
Look at the above image, chances are you recognize many of these logos. You know what they represent, you may have certain feelings when you see them, you may be confident in that brand. See what I did there? It’s all branding, and it’s how you recognize the company or product. The Coca-Cola Company is one of the best at branding in my opinion. Their website shows they offer over 3,500 products worldwide, they have 1,322,000 tweets per quarter, and Coke products are available in over 200 countries. That’s some serious business!
I toured The World of Coke in Atlanta, Georgia this summer and was amazed at the interesting history they shared, not only Coke history, but business history as well. The first advertising Coke did was a coupon to try Coke, which was pretty unheard of in the late 1800’s. Next came newspaper advertising, and then later they placed sign advertising at the soda shops and pharmacies that sold Coke. I think everyone can think of their favorite or most memorable Coke commercial. Perhaps yours is “The Hilltop”, which featured the song “I’d like to buy the world a Coke”. Maybe you enjoy the Mean Joe Greene commercial, which seems to top the World’s Best Commercial shows still on TV.
One of the most memorable things I saw at the World of Coke was the “Moments of Happiness film”, it was wonderful! Here’s the link to the trailer on you tube. So each snippet from the video incites some sort of emotion. A time that you enjoyed playing with your children (or nieces and nephews), or perhaps those same spots remind someone of their own childhood. Maybe another reminds you of your first love, but helps someone else think of when they first met their spouse. Another may remind you of times with your friends, or make you realize you miss your friendships since you’ve been to busy to socialize lately. I related to many parts of the video, and if you got to see the whole thing you likely would also.
My goal here is more personal branding, but for my blog, but I find it to be important to see what has worked for others. Business branding is everywhere we look, almost literally. What about people who have a brand? There are millions of blogs on the Web, and many successful bloggers who have branded themselves well. When searching out some of those company logos, I came across this one:
Wow, I never thought of this one. Talk about branding yourself!
“The whole point of being alive is to evolve into the complete person you were intended to be.” —Oprah Winfrey
Biography states that Oprah Winfrey is best known for hosting her internationally popular talk show from 1986 to 2011. In 1994, talk shows became increasingly trashy, but Oprah kept tabloid topics off of her show. Initially ratings went down, but the increased yet again. Being true to her brand is what earned her viewers’ respect. Some other successes:
- 1986 – Harpo Productions, Production company
- 1999 – Oxygen Media, Cable and internet programming for women
- 2000 – O: The Oprah Magazine
- 2009 – Oprah Radio
- 2011 – The Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN)
Notice the big “O” and signature in all of the logos pictured? That is definitely successful branding in my opinion. Just some successes to think about while also working through my own branding. You’ll see some changes along the way, make sure to let me know what you think.