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Be the Change Foundation

Liz Johnson, president & principal consultant of Mountain View Marketing, was pleased to teach a class entitled Your Guide to Successful Branding and Outreach to Be the Change Foundation women business owners and prospective business owners at Lord Fairfax Community College on April 25th.  Great group!


Is Your Brand on Target?

by Liz Johnson
Times Business Contributor

Your brand is your known identity as a company or organization. It is the essence of what your firm stands for—what clients, prospective clients, collaborative partners, colleagues, and other businesses and organizations think of when they hear your company name. Your brand represents your promise to your clients and prospective clients regarding what you do and why it is of value to them. It drives your clients to want your services or products — not just need them. Your brand connects you with the marketplace on an emotional level. Having a successful brand is critical to the growth and prosperity of your business.

A successful brand is:

  • Engaging
  • Effective
  • Consistent

It is important to do a Brand Check-Up every six months to ensure that your brand is successful and working hard for you. Review all of your outreach components (mobile, online, and print ads, videos and commercials, marketing collateral, social media campaigns, website additions and changes, etc.) created during the past six months and ask:

  • Do the value propositions or differentiating assets that set your company or organization apart from the competition come through clearly?
  • Are the personality, tone, and voice of your firm consistent on all platforms?
  • Are your branding color palette and font used consistently in all of your outreach?
  • Is your brand building and leveraging the trust and credibility of your firm?
  • Is your brand attracting new clients while retaining existing clients?
  • Is your brand drawing top-quality employees to join your team?
  • Does your brand tell your story accurately?

Remember that a successful brand is essential for a successful, prosperous business and doing a Brand Check-Up is a great way to make sure your brand is on target.

Published in the July 26, 2017 issue of Times Business.

Do your brand colors convey the correct message for your business?

by Liz Johnson
Times Business Contributor

Color is an important component of your brand. It has more of an impact on your clients’/customers’ perception of your business than you may realize. Understanding your clients’/customers’ response to certain colors can increase the effectiveness of your company’s logo, website, advertising, and collateral significantly. Knowing the meaning of color is important to the target market penetration and success of your business.

WebPageFX, a web design and marketing firm, found that 84.7% of consumers cite color as the primary reason they buy a particular product and 80% believe color increases brand recognition. Marketo, a firm that develops marketing automation software, reported that of the world’s top 100 brands, determined by brand value, 95% use only one or two colors in their brands.

What Do Specific Colors Convey?
Red is an attention-getting action color. It conveys power, energy, boldDo your brand colors convey the correct message for your business? ness, strength, and courage. It encourages prospects to take action and make a product or service purchase. Coca-Cola, CNN, Target, Canon, Avis, and Kellogg’s showcase red in their brands.

Blue is perceived as trustworthy, loyal, dependable, reliable, responsible, and secure. It is associated with integrity and conveys a message of stability and inspires trust. JP Morgan, Lowe’s, Facebook, Walmart, American Express, Ford, and Pepsi tap into the power of blue.

Green denotes growth, vitality, reliability, dependability, serenity, and peacefulness. Dark green is a strong choice for financial firms. Lighter green is an ideal color to promote health and healing and natural, safe, organic products. Animal Planet, Tropicana, BP, John Deere, Land Rover, Starbucks Coffee, and Holiday Inn include green in their brands.

Yellow conveys warmth, cheerfulness, happiness, optimism, clarity, confidence, motivation, and creativity. It stimulates energy. McDonald’s golden arches leverage the positive components of yellow. Best Buy, Sprint, Denny’s, Nikon, Hertz, and Subway use yellow in their branding color palettes.

Purple denotes sophistication, royalty, creativity, imagination, wisdom, mystery, and spirituality. Hallmark, Mobile, Crown Royal, SyFy, and Yahoo have incorporated purple into their brands.

Brown is associated with strength, practicality, reliability, durability, solidity, maturity, comfort, and earthiness. Men are more drawn to brown than women. UPS cites brown in their slogan, “What can Brown do for you?” It is a predominant color in their brand.

Black means authority, timelessness, power, control, strength, sophistication, elegance, formality, and seduction. It is an effective color for businesses that sell luxury items or services. When combined with bright colors, black creates an engaging and dramatic effect. Chanel, BMW, Lexus, Armani Exchange, and NASA use black as a branding color.

Silver conveys prestige, wealth, sophistication, intuition and dignity. It conveys sleek, quality craftsmanship, and modern, high-tech artistry. Aviator, Mercedes, BMW, and Daimler incorporate silver in their brands.

Define the characteristics and components you want your brand to convey. Choose the colors that connect with your brand promise and deliver your message. Color influences how clients/ customers view your brand and contributes to a strong brand identity so it is imperative to choose wisely. Put color to work for your business’ brand.

Published in the March 29, 2017 issue of Times Business

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