Advertise in Micro Media OutletsBeing Helpful FirstColor PsychologyGet PersonalGive Out 'Free Stuff'Personal Branding

16 Surprising Branding Secrets That Actually Work – Personal Branding Blog


What is your favorite strange-but-effective branding tip that has surprised you with positive results?

These answers are provided by Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. YEC has also launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.

1. Always Focus on Being Helpful First

Customers are more than just sources of revenue. When responding to inquiries or complaints, on social media or any other platform, aim to help customers by providing well-researched answers or solutions. By focusing on helping customers, your brand gets that all-important edge when it comes to building trust. I’ve even noticed this approach leading to the creation of brand evangelists. – Derek RobinsonTop Notch Dezigns

2. Take Advantage of Color Psychology

Each of our HVAC filters is branded with a number as well as a color. Because of this, customers are able to build a better recognition and association with the specifics of a particular product. Color is often where first impressions are made and we can help build both a cohesive brand awareness while simultaneously differentiating between the benefits of each products’ unique offerings. – Shu SaitoAll Filters LLC

3. Give Out ‘Free Stuff’

You wouldn’t believe how effective it is to hand out T-shirts to groups of strangers and talk about your brand. Everyone loves free stuff and will be more than willing to like your Facebook page, download your app or post an Instagram pic with you and your product. Just remember these important words: “Hey, do you want some free stuff?” – Jason CriddleJason Criddle and Associates

4. Respond to Positive and Negative Feedback, Especially on Social Media

Responding to positive feedback will obviously improve your SEO ranking and create new customers, but also responding to negative feedback gives your brand a chance to understand exactly where your customers are coming from when they interact with your products/services and how you can potentially improve their experience. It’s a great opportunity for a new brand. – Cody McLainSupportNinja

5. Advertise in Micro Media Outlets

I have run ads in very small, local media outlets with a great deal of success. These can be local community groups, churches, nonprofit fundraiser programs or community newspapers. These outlets tend to be inexpensive and if the locations are strategic, such as corresponding with a product launch, the results can be amazing. Remember, instilling word of mouth branding starts locally. – Ryan BradleyKoester & Bradley, LLP

6. Offer Public Answers and Open Forum Advice

One of the best ways to engage with an audience and also build a following for yourself is to take advantage of open forums and discussions that can be found in Facebook Groups or sites like Quora. If you are already a well-known and trusted name in your space, this will show audiences that you actually care and are willing to help out. Contribute your time and expertise to see great results. – Zac JohnsonBlogger

7. Implement a Referral Program

When we first started building our referral program we tried to do it from scratch and it was very overwhelming. So we decided to pivot and use a service to quickly and seamlessly create the program. We’ve been surprised with how easy it was and how effective it has been. – Syed BalkhiWPBeginner

8. Feature Yourself in a Video

We recently launched a company profile video where I was featured talking about our company. I never thought much of it, but at a recent trade show, I had a handful of people come up to me to tell me that they saw me on a video online and they really liked it. I never thought the focus would be on me, but people were still impressed by seeing someone on camera. – Diego OrjuelaCables & Sensors

9. Get Personal

I was hesitant to share my personal life on Instagram such as my workouts and my meals, but I realized this is what my audience wanted to see. They wanted to see the true me and what I did on a daily basis. This is what makes your brand unique. Don’t just share your expertise; share all of you and your audience will dig it. – Sweta PatelSilicon Valley Startup Marketing

10. Use Emojis When Appropriate

Using emojis in some emails and social media posts has surprisingly given us positive results. I think they help to humanize the message, but it’s important not to overdo it. Pick emojis that are relevant to the conversation. – Chris ChristoffMonsterInsights

11. Offer Unusual Coupons

Once at an apparel trade show we served Chinese food to all our customers and gave them each fortune cookies at the end. Inside each cookie was a branded fortune, along with unique discount, redeemable only if purchasing the collection that same day. It worked. – Dalia MacPheeDALIA MACPHEE

12. Mention How Much Fun Work Is

In the corporate world, it’s easy to subscribe to the perfectly written business copy that enterprises are used to. However, it’s becoming increasingly effective to stand out by being transparent about your company’s culture. When a brand shouts loudly about how much fun it is to do work, there is an unspoken magnetization that can bring about companies and customers that play by the same rules. – Logan LenzPartsMarket

13. Design for Mass Appeal

Some ideas, colors and words already have a “mass effect” that make them rocket fuel for your brand. A logo shaped as a circle seems more familiar and certain words have positive or niche associations your unique customer base may understand. By being intentional in how you design your brand identity, you can leverage the mental positioning others have already set for you. – Dan SanMeural

14. Bring Family to Work Events

Every time I bring my family with me to conferences, they get more attention than I do. People usually hide their families and keep their work separate, which seems silly if you think about it. I’ve found that my family is actually what makes people want to approach me, and because we’ve developed a brand that is inclusive of family values, integrating them into my business life speaks to my brand. – Amber AndersonMORE

15. Incorporate Testimonials

Utilize customer testimonials. When you get great feedback from your clients, post it on social media pages, rather than you doing all of the talking about your business, product or service. – Andrew SchrageMoney Crashers Personal Finance

16. Provide Counter-Intuitive Advice

This is a form of reverse psychology that I’ve found works very well to foster trust in my brand: Since the majority of my online content is based on education for certain careers, I’ll try and generate some content offering reasons why not to pursue these career paths. Offering some insight that runs counter to my explicit message has helped to build trust in my brand in my experience. – Bryce WelkerCPA Exam Guy

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