Evaluate your brand’s authenticity with 3 key questions.
The big scary
When a hurricane gets big, gets scary, heads our way, gets a name, and gets publicity, it becomes a major brand.
That is, until 2011.
That’s when the Weather Channel started giving names to other kinds of storms, like blizzards. After this, storms with names became more common. As a result, hurricanes didn’t sound like such a big deal anymore.
Sidekick or real deal?
Then we experienced hurricane Sandy, which, of course, was a big deal. Since the power of the hurricane brand was devalued, weather forecasters invented a new term – the “superstorm.”
Now, hurricane is an authentic brand. The word was coined in the sixteenth century, and is found in Shakespeare’s plays. That’s a lot of brand equity! Furthermore, the word itself sounds stormy – the double rr’s in “hurr-” have a rolling, turbulent feel.
On the other hand, “superstorm” feels phony. It tries too hard to feel like a big deal – sort like a superhero’s sidekick. It sounds cartoony, not serious. Finally, the two “s“ sounds in the word feel soft, not stormy.
Next up: the super-duper storm?
So let’s turn the clock back and embrace the hurricane brand! Otherwise, it’s hard to say where we go from here – maybe super-duper storms?
Your brand: authentic or phony?
Does your brand look like it’s trying too hard, like “superstorm”? The objective of all brands is to be trusted. And trust is built by brands that look, feel, and sound effortlessly authentic, not phony.
- Does your brand have equity? Does your audience feel that it’s memorable, easily recognized, different from competitors, and have a good reputation? One shortcut to equity is connecting your brand to your hometown. Your hometown is likely to more established, widely known, and memorable than your brand. For example, we’ve been in Brooklyn for over 20 years, so we incorporate “Brooklyn business” in our key messaging.
- Is your voice – how your organization says things – true to your brand? If your brand was a person, what would it sound like? An authentic brand has a voice that your audience instinctively trusts.
- Is your brand confident? Your brand should always be present in your communications. BUT a confident brand stays in the background. If your brand is shoved in your audience’s face, it feels smaller, and your audience will lose trust.
Let your brand be more like a hurricane, less like a superstorm!
FACT OF THE MONTH
Every single Major League baseball is rubbed in Lena Blackburne Baseball Rubbing Mud, a unique “very fine” mud only found in a secret location near Palmyra, New Jersey.