Branding for Dollars

17860213-the-brandWhether you are recruiting new members, seeking sponsorship or selling exhibit space at an event, the value of your brand has a huge impact on how people perceive your efforts and respond to your “ask”.

Your brand is not just a logo – it is what people think of you – your reputation. A lot of organizations engage in revenue-building activities without giving a second thought to what kind of organization their prospects are buying into. If I am going to consider joining your association, investing in exhibit space, sponsoring an event or even donating for an activity, I want to know that I’m associating myself with an organization that is viewed as relevant (and valuable) to my customers or colleagues. Continue reading “Branding for Dollars”

What REALLY Makes You Different?

Whether it’s to generate sponsorship, recruit association members or market a new product or service, one of the most important things any organization must do is position themselves uniquely in the marketplace.

To see how effective you are in this area, try this simple exercise. Go through the list below (one at a time) and just for fun, stand-up each time, if you use these words to describe your organization’s competitive advantage.

*Great customer service
*Quality of organization / program
*Our reputation
*Knowledgeable staff
*We generate good results
*Dedicated staff
*Consistent management
*Responsive to customer needs
*You can Trust Us

Let me guess, I’ll bet you stood-up for almost every one of these attributes. The problem is, most organizations do.  The fact is that these are not characteristics that make us different, but rather, those that we expect from anyone we do business with.

So, the challenge in marketing is to identify the value proposition that really sets you apart from everyone else. Effective positioning starts with words like:

“We are the only organization that _____” or “We are the national voice for ___” or “We represent ___”

Effective positioning helps everyone outside your organization understand what your organization brings to the table. It helps potential sponsors or industry suppliers identify if you are the kind of organization they want to explore opportunities with, industry professionals determine if they want to invest in a membership or individuals who need to choose between several competing products of services.

Effective positioning is one of the many topics that will be discussed at MARCOM, June 10-12 at the Ottawa Convention Centre.  This year’s theme is “Marketing Reboot: Fresh Ideas for Smarter Marketing” where the focus will be on changing the status quo. We live in complicated times and today’s marketing and communications professionals need new tools and strategies to achieve their goals. MARCOM delivers a stellar line-up of speakers and topics that will help you change the way you operate. I’ll be there and hope to see you as well.

Later, BC