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Bolder, Braver, Better Marketing

filed in Brand Story, Marketing


How would you find more customers if you couldn’t use traditional marketing methods? If you couldn’t do any print, radio or TV advertising or use the digital levers we’ve become so used to relying on as a way to drive business growth. Where would you start?

My guess is you’d start with people. You’d double down on serving the customers you already had and talk with, not at, people who were not customers yet. You’d get very good at explaining what you do and how it helps your customers.
You’d become an expert at looking people in the eye. You’d be bolder, braver, better. You’d make your own magic.

It’s not rocket science, yet it’s something we’ve neglected in our digital age.

This is how most businesses marketed themselves fifty years ago. By doing making the best possible product for customers they knew and cared to serve. We moved away from that brave marketing model and in many ways, that shift has been to our detriment. Our focus on efficiency and scaling has taken us further away from our customers and made us less courageous marketers.

Is your marketing mindset limiting your ability to connect with and serve your customers better?

Image by Garry Knight

Everyone Speaks

filed in Brand Strategy, Marketing


If you search ‘best breakfast in Hobart’ on Trip Advisor, you’ll find a tiny, backstreet cafe in the number one spot. This cafe opens for six hours each day, only seats a dozen people and has a queue of eager diners waiting outside before it opens. It’s the kind of place the people who visit go out of their way to find.

What’s the big draw? The cafe is designed so diners can sit at the bench and interact with the chef while he cooks their delicious breakfast. People are not just going to eat amazing food. They’re coming for the theatre and the feeling of intimacy.

The chef is the star of the show. But it’s not just the chef’s performance that matters. How every member of the team welcomes and serves people makes or breaks the experience. Everyone’s actions speak for the brand. So when the waitstaff don’t smile or scold diners for moving into their workspace, it breaks the spell and kills the magic.

Everyone, no matter how visible, who has a hand in creating the customer experience, speaks for your brand. It isn’t only the star of the show who tells the story.

Image by Marchaud Wittouck

Fabled Or Found?

filed in Brand Story, Marketing


Every week, my favourite bookstore restocks the shelves at the front of the store with new releases. And every time I go there, I think the same thing. What are the chances of any book—no matter how good, being found here?

The truth is, the books that sell are the ones that people come into the store knowing they are going to buy. The book that’s been recommended. The thing they’ve already heard about.

Breakthrough ideas and bestselling products are rarely stumbled upon.
They are recommended—passed from person-to-person.

Our job isn’t to be found. It’s to make something worth talking about.

We do that by understanding who we do our best work for and why—then creating something those people love.

Image by Germán Poo-Caamaño

Don’t Manipulate Me, Move Me

filed in Brand Story, Brand Strategy, Marketing


There’s a difference between a good story and a great story.
A good story gets our attention. A great story changes us.

Successful marketing campaigns and brand stories don’t convince us.
They move us.

A good leader gets our vote, and sometimes, our respect.
A great leader gains our loyalty, and often, our love.

We don’t have to be smart enough to manipulate people to act.
We have to be sincere enough to move them to act.

Image by Nevada Halbert

The Two Rules Of Good Marketing

filed in Brand Story, Marketing, Story Skills


The best marketing does two things:

1. It empowers people to make decisions now that they won’t regret later.
2. It helps people to do the things they want to do.

If you’re helping the people you serve to do both of these things, you can proudly say you’re a good marketer.

Image by Eric Shoniya

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