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How many times have you heard the phrase “You only have one chance to make a first impression?”  It may be considered a trite Madison Avenue quote or even attributed to the wry wit of Oscar Wilde, but ultimately for every business it is a stark reality.

Unfortunately in this brave new socially driven, globally flat world of marketing, your image may determine true ultimate success. Your image (read: brand pyramid) is your first impression.  Today it is all about the conversation: how to initiate; how to participate; how to behave once engaged, and how to handle opposing views. To this end, I invite you to start with this:

  1. Context: Boundaries of the conversation you wish to participate in
  2. Problem: The most dramatic challenge everyone in the above context faces on a daily basis
  3. Promise: In a perfect utopian world this is how the above problem would be dealt with
  4. Difference: Something that uniquely separates your approach from the myriad of others available
  5. Enabler: Your solution name or brand

Spend some time with various word choices trying to get the word count as low as possible. Completing this successfully will then enable your entry into conversations in this new digital low-touch marketing-centric world. As you can imagine there are few shortcuts to success, so we at Magnetic Monkey Marketing are always on the look out for new best practices, so please share if you have any.

Most marketers talk about brand Mission, corporate Vision or company Values, all of which are elements of the brand pyramid. And almost everyone I talk to focuses on the Vision and to some degree Values portion, but unfortunately most never mention Personality. So if you’ve been keeping track, a brand pyramid builds from the bottom up with these characteristics:

  • Personality: How do you want people to feel about your brand?
  • Value: Why is it important?
  • Vision: What will be different in this world?
  • Mission: What is it you do?

Some people swap Mission and Vision under the guise that a company starts with a Vision and then builds a Mission around that. I subscribe to the Mission drives a new Vision for reality which delivers Value within a certain Personality. If you need a more specific example then here is one from Apple Computer.

Bottom-line is that how you set your brand pyramid will determine your “first impressions”.  Make these decisions with proper planning, research and relentless attention to detail and you are the path to success.  Anything less could spell future challenges.