This is part one of a presentation from Stephen Melanson on Verbal Branding given at The Non-Profit Toolbox meet-up at the South Shore Science Center in Norwell MA. Here is the transcript of the clip:
I'm going to talk to you about Verbal Branding and Verbal Branding as you see are new literally unique in the world as far as I know branding applications. And the goal is as you see there. To simultaneously improve sales culture, what I refer to as Brand Density, and there is even more to it than that. But Ill talk about everything. I have about twenty minutes with you, I'm going to teach you everything I can in twenty minutes about Verbal Branding. I hope you find it interesting, and I think you'll find it interesting that you can apply some of these things starting tomorrow for your non-profits.
Now here's what I believe should keep you awake at night. Your brand being diminished every single day times every single person regardless of how many there are in your organization times every conversation they have. Now I don't make that up just to make a point I work with a lot of different kinds of companies and firms and organizations. This is the scenario that I see everywhere I go regardless of the situation. So it might now start keeping you awake, but this is what I see everywhere and this is to be avoided obviously for your brand. Now I do work in a specific area of branding. Branding is a huge topic as you know. There is what's called the identity elements, logos, tags lines, the name of your firm or organization, the colors and the imagery on your Web site, things like that. Those are all identity related, I don't do any of that work. I do what called positioning, and here is my very simple definition of what position should mean to you in my opinion. How are you different and because of that difference better than the competition whoever the competition is. This is what I use for a definition regardless who I'm working with and it works every time.
The gap in the branding marketplace is a spoken application. Believe it or not in the branding world, full service branding companies do all sorts of work for their clients, they never actually deal with what people say every day to people outside their organization. That's the work that I do. Again, Verbal Branding is a spoken application, literally a spoken robust application, for this thing that I call brand positioning and that's what its called in the marketplace.
So here's what's at issue and everyone will be all relate to this. What conversation do you want or need to have when you speak to somebody? How many conversations do you think you've had in your entire business or nonprofit life? Most people say, oh five hundred, ten thousand, things like that. Right? Actually there's only, two you're either the same or you're different, there's no middle ground. And you should know that when you're in the field and you're talking to people there's only two options, you're either the same or you're different from your competition. That's what goes on in the mind of the consumer. Does that make sense?
OK, now to something I call conversational dynamics, but before I go into that in a little bit of detail, I want you to know this. This is why my best tips and I hope you remember it forever. When you tell someone your name, when you tell them what category your business or your firm is in, your non-profit, here's what I have to say. No one cares. Ok? No one cares, isn't that awful? No one cares but it's true. Nonprofit about X Y or Z, CPA firm, attorney, branding consultant, guess what I don't even care that I'm a branding consultant. So I never tell anybody that because I know that they shouldn't care because I don't even care. I care what my positioning in the marketplace is. It's totally different and what I'll tell you and I see everywhere I go is that people sell quote, unquote sell or try to raise money based on category. Listen to what people say in maybe even listen to yourself and you'll realize that what happens is they'll tell you what category of business they're in and then they'll go about talking about the positive attributes of the category alone and they have not positioned themselves for differentiation in their competitive space. Start listening for that and you'll hear it everywhere, ninety nine percent of the time. That's to be avoided.
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