Are Brands a Thing of the Past?

That’s what I read earlier today — that building a brand simply isn’t important anymore.  In fact, the person who wrote this went so far as to say that brands “aren’t as important as the truth”.

Whoa… wait a minute!  Does that mean every business that’s building a brand is full of big, fat liars?  Is building a brand actually something that turns OFF your target customers?  Is having a brand simply unnecessary these days? Are Brands a Thing of the Past? image question mark 65833 640 300x211Are Brands a Thing of the Past?

I understand the point this person was trying to make — that people like to do business with other PEOPLE, not nameless, faceless corporate entities, and that’s something I totally agree with.  In fact, I’m always saying that good web content has to be “human” in order to generate results.  I believe that the very best web content evokes emotion, makes the reader feel like he’s having a one-on-one conversation with the author, is memorable, and builds a relationship between the reader and the writer.

But you can do all of that and STILL build a brand!

After all, building a brand simply means setting yourself apart from the competition.  When you build your brand, you work hard to make people associate your business with certain feelings — like trust, satisfaction, and contentment.

You can do a big chunk of that work through your content.  After all, if you’re trying to make money on the web, your content is the only chance you’ve got to “talk” to your target audience.

How do you do it?

You can write blog posts and articles that show you’re an expert on the subject — which will make people more likely to trust you.  You can write sales copy that explains all of the benefits to working with you — and, thus, why people will be so satisfied with your product/service.  You can send out newsletters that offer up interesting analyses and new developments — which will make your readers content in knowing they made the right choice by doing business with you.

You don’t have to use big, fancy corporate-speak when you write any of this content, either.  Even if you run the biggest company in the world, you can still write conversationally.  You can insert some of your own humor, quick wit, and sarcasm.  You can share some personal details that make you more human and easier to relate to.  There are plenty of ways to make people feel like they’re talking to YOU, instead of some giant office building.

Why do you have to sacrifice your personality in order to build a brand?

You don’t — and you shouldn’t!

You can build a brand without telling a bunch of lies, being fake, or adopting some type of phony persona.  You don’t have to hide behind smoke and mirrors to set yourself apart.  You don’t have to become a profit-obsessed maniac who ignores what’s best for his customers in order to build a brand.  Building a brand doesn’t make you dishonest.

Want to be honest?  Build a brand that you can legitimately live up to.  That’s what people are REALLY looking for!

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