Debunking Branding Myths, Part One

Chicken littleIn the story of Chicken Little we’re told that the sky is falling, and we laugh at him.  However, it seems that if you are told the same story consistently, eventually you will believe it.  This seems to ring true with branding. Just because everyone else is saying or doing something does not mean it works.

All too often I see entrepreneurs throw  thousands of dollars away trying to grow their businesses with traditional branding techniques because – that is what everyone else is doing.  These branding myths can break a company before it even gets off the ground.  Times have changed for marketing.  Technology has created new ways to build and brand your company.  Traditional techniques do not always work anymore.  Being aware of the following five myths will help you avoid making these mistakes in branding.

Myth: Offering consistent and great product will produce a successful business.

Of course we know that the quality of your product of service is important.  But it has little to do with how successful your new or established business will become.  The truth is that some profitable, successful brands offer marginal product while some failing businesses offer amazing products.  The success of your brand venture is dependent on more than just the quality of your product.  Unfortunately creating the perfect product will not necessarily lead to the world beating a path do you door.  Your superior product or service will make you proud, but will not make money by itself.

Solution:  You could launch a beta test for your product or service to start getting exposure.  Utilize social networking sites and ask readers for their opinions and feedback.  A great way to start building your email list is to post on a social network and link back to your site with the email capture and a survey readers can download and participate in.  Make the service about them, not about you or your product or service.

Myth:  The more you spend on advertising the more profitable you will become.

You will hear this one from every advertising sales person out there. Consistent repetition gives this myth credibility. If you do anything in business just because it is what everyone else is doing you are in big trouble. Many brands spend huge amounts of cash on their monthly advertising budget. Most of this money is wasted on ineffective ads though. There are much smarter ways to build a brand.  There is a place for advertising in branding, but it is brand maintenance, not brand building.  Advertising lacks the credibility that building a brand needs.

Solution:  The best way to build credibility is to use the media.  Online print and broadcast media outlets are often looking for quality content and contributions.  You can offer valuable tips tied with current events for readers, viewers and listeners.  You will gain a ton of exposure and credibility if your campaign is planned and well executed.

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