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What's the Measure of One Word?
What if you interviewed a handful of clients and asked them this question: "What's the ONE word you would use that best describes what we do well?" Is it fast, attentive, welcoming, creative, cheap, cool, techie, smart, caring? One word is tough, but you need to get there. One simple word that sums up how you are different. If you can do that, and it's a word that means a lot to a lot, your marketing job will be significantly easier.
Can't think of a word? If your business was a car, what type would it be? Why? What are the qualities you admire in people? What color is your business? What kind of music do you sound like? What kind of plant would you be? Why? (Sorry if I'm scaring some of you with this!)
Got your word? Now, how does everyone in your firm define and own that word. Starbucks uses the word welcoming. If you sneak a peak back in the back room of a Starbucks you might find a bulletin board full of "thoughts on welcoming" written by the staff.
What if you asked all your clients and associates to help you come up with your word and then asked them to give your their thoughts on what that word means or how they experience that word. (This would make a very fun activity for a client appreciation party - just add beer.)
If you actually did that you might uncover some incredible marketing material and may even come up with the motivation to inject your word and all its various meanings into everything you do - make your word your filter for every marketing decision.
That's how a small business brand is built, that's how you differentiate your business.
My word: practical. How do I know? People tell me, all the time.
What's your word?
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By John Jantsch
About the Author: John Jantsch
RSS for John's articles - Visit John's website
John Jantsch is a veteran marketing coach, award winning blogger and author of Duct Tape Marketing - The World's Most Practical Small Business Marketing Guide (foreword by Michael Gerber, author of The E-Myth) published by Thomas Nelson - due out in the fall of 2006 He is the creator of the Duct Tape Marketing small business marketing system and Duct Tape Marketing Authorized Coach Network. His Duct Tape Marketing Blog was chosen as a Forbes favorite for small business and marketing and is a Harvard Business School featured marketing site. His blog was also chosen as "Best Small Business Marketing Blog" in 2004, 2005 and 2006 by the readers of Marketing Sherpa.
Click here to visit John's website.
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