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What comes to mind when you hear the term brand?
Depending on your age, demographic, and interests you may consider some of the following businesses:
But, what separates these brands from other businesses in their industry?
The answer: brand equity.
If you are an entrepreneur, solopreneur, or business owner, you may be wondering the difference between a brand and a business — and why it matters in the first place.
On the latest episode of the Inner Edison Podcast with Ed Parcaut, we discussed the three habits entrepreneurs can start to build a brand.
We spoke with B. Jeffery Madoff. He is the Founder and CEO of Madoff Productions and the author of Creative Careers: Making a Living With Your Ideas.
For more than two decades, B. Jeffery Madoff has been the genius behind iconic brands like Ralph Lauren, Victoria’s Secret, Tiffany & Co., Godiva Chocolates, and more.
Here are some nuggets he shared with our listeners.
Why Brand Equity is Important for Entrepreneurs
Businesses with brand equity can charge more for the same product or service than their competitors. By employing a few simple habits, entrepreneurs can separate themselves from other businesses in their industry.
Madoff summarizes the difference between a brand and a business beautifully, “If you’re not a brand, you’re a commodity.”
If you are an entrepreneur who wants to establish a brand in 2022 and beyond, follow B. Jeffery Madoff’s three branding essentials for success.
1. Have a Compelling Story
The one branding essential that all great brands share is that they have a compelling story. Madoff believes that great companies know how to make their products and services belong to a larger story for customers.
While companies must sell products that people will love, it’s the story that makes them irresistible.
Madoff believes that brand equity begins with a compelling story. Entrepreneurs who can weave a story that reflects their values stand a great chance of establishing a brand.
According to Madoff, Apple’s story centers on the idea of being cool and having hip technology. While Apple products are great, no one stands in line for two days just for technology. They want to be the first to own the next “cool thing”.
When looking at Nike, Madoff explains that it’s all about the story of the aspirational athlete. Their slogan “Just Do It” is a perfect example of that story.
2. Be Consistent
One thing that major brands get right is that they remain consistent. They stand behind their values as a company, which increases their brand equity.
Madoff puts it perfectly. “You’ll never see Ralph Lauren sell cheap clothes. Why? Because their story centers on style, sophistication, and great taste. To do so would go against what they stand for.”
Another great example is the Disney corporation. Their brand story centers on family entertainment. Madoff explains that whenever Walt Disney made a decision about the company he would ask himself ‘What would Mickey Do?”
Entrepreneurs that create a compelling story and remain consistent are employing the same habits as powerhouse brands.
3. Market With Emotion
Companies with excellent brand equity don’t just sell products — they tap into human emotions.
When Madoff conceptualizes commercials for major brands like Victoria’s Secret, he uses emotion as a significant selling feature.
Madoff taps into the aspirational quality of feeling sexy in lingerie with models.
“What’s interesting is we never talk about the product — we only show how the product makes you feel.”
Entrepreneurs who can craft a compelling story, remain consistent, and tap into human emotions are well on their way to becoming noteworthy brands.
Brand Equity is a Choice
All great brands started small. It is important to remember that no matter where you are in your entrepreneurial journey, brand equity is a choice.
Use these three branding essentials to create success in 2022 and beyond.
As always, for more great content on business, entrepreneurship, and more, please follow the Inner Edison Podcast with Ed Parcaut.