Sunday, June 20

Branding Freshness: Fresh Content Project

Considering that a brand is one of the most powerful elements in any communication measurement equation, it's surprising how often professionals misunderstand them. People believe all sorts of nonsense about brands.

Some think a new name or mission statement might change them. Others have promoted the idea that brands are best left to the management of crowds. And yet others still think introspection can somehow trump the relationships they are built upon. Right. Most of what people think about brands is utter nonsense. The five fresh picks below all touch on elements of branding that are anything but nonsense.

Best Fresh Content In Review, Week of June 7

What Does It Mean To Re-Brand?
Jay Ehret gives his readers the skinny on re-branding. It takes much more than a new identity, name, or facelift, he says. Brands are defined by actions. He's right. Brand relationships are created by the actions and interactions between products and companies, customers and the public. See for yourself with a side-by-side comparison of ideas.

Are You Ready for the Opportunity Economy?
Jay Baer shares his insights on using social media, which can sometimes be summed up as a series of opportunities that begin online and end on a site or in the store. He suggests three of the most powerful connectors are geography, inquiry, and context. Targeting location, answering questions, and gaining exposure are all proven to open up opportunities online. The only cautionary element in the assessment is that Baer says you cannot plan for it. Of course you can, just not with scripts.

Shifting Sands Are Shafting Brands.
Sometimes using popular online tools carries an element of risk. Ike Pigott reminds anyone online that the strength of an online presence that is reliant on a specific platform, network, or technology is always subject to change. And in some cases, there have been several that have changed, grown, become diminished, or disappeared outright. (Nobody's looking for an Utterz expert nowadays.) Pigott's solution is to ensure you own as much of your data as possible, never becoming overly reliant on someone else's sand.

50 Top Startups Worth Watching.
As evidence of Pigott's assessment, we really need to look no further than another post penned by Louis Gray. He lists 50 start- ups that have been making some progress for one reason or another online. One or two of them could become the next Twitter or Facebook, with a brand strong enough that every consultant and company will want to include a new link of their advertisements. Others rely on the current structures of different networks. And many probably won't last more than a year.

Sharing Versus Self-Promotion: An Experiment.
Jason Falls created the first phase of an experiment of sorts, tracking whether people are more likely to read his posts or the posts he shared. Typical social media thinking suggests self-promoted posts might take a back seat to sharing content. The opposite holds true. While some people easily spotted that the Falls brand is often more powerful than those he might promote, the experiment still provides a glimpse into how many social media constructs just don't hold over time.

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