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December 5, 2013

What’s in a boutique brand Part 2.

Published: 5 December 2013 

Last month we discussed what’s in a personal brand, what attributes are key to it’s success and where the inspiration for your brand should come from. If you haven’t already read it, or perhaps just want a refresher, here’s the link: /branding/whats-in-a-boutique-brand-part-1/

This second and crucial closing installment is all about finding out what core values that represent you can be carried to the brand. Seeing as transparency in business is becoming increasingly important, the very basis of the boutique brand should be as accurate a representation of the proprietors as is humanly possible.

Clear is the new clever. In a world saturated with advertising and a multitude of marketing mediums, cut through the sh!t with some honesty. Be clear about what it is that you’re offering. If there’s good in it, tell it well and succinctly. If there’s bad, tell that too. Consumers are natural skeptics and if you identify a bad, which they likely already suspected, it opens a conversation. Deliver information as to how the bad is being dealt with, managed or simply isolated and you’ll earn the trust of the skeptic which may in turn mean a sale in the future.

Being clear is being aware. Take a look around your living room, the furniture and ornaments that adorn your life, your clothes, the way you open envelopes even the way you style your hair. They are all interpretable extensions of your core and can be easily transposed into the way you represent the brand. Consumers are savvy and want to connect with, and buy from, genuine operators. If you’re clear in your operation and consistent with your actual core values you’ll run a better chance of connecting to the right type of customers.

Look for form representation in your existing environments. Catchy logos are simple and subtly depict the action or benefits of the service / products on offer. If you’re operating in the chosen industry you’re developing the brand for, take a look around at the tools YOU use, the actions YOU make when you use them, silhouettes of the everyday visuals which accompany the task. These make great base forms for your brand and can be easily built upon by anyone harbouring a 2B and some butchers paper.

As for names, buzz-words are still a big no-no as are non-personal business descriptions (if you want to be remembered for your outstanding personality and like-ability that is). Looking to your own name, nickname, place of birth, unique attribute of any kind will be a great way for those who connect with you to remember you. Now remember, remembering is the key goal of branding. When you have a plumbing problem will you remember Jake the Jolly Plumber, who was actually a jovial joker who did a good job last time or Bay District Drainage who give no connection to what the experience was or will be like in their name should you offer them the work.

Lastly, don’t try too hard! In the pursuit of natural brand representation with clear and concise representation of your core values you may just find there’s very little work to do at all. After all, the closer to the truth the more organic the process will be and if you’re not thinking too hard about it, your boutique brand will likely pop into your head when you’re just busy being you.


Ben Maden

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