Positioning – To Thine Own Brand Be True

During a recent outing with a friend, the conversation turned to business. She has been a huge supporter of The Wakeman Agency and was truly excited that we had made to the 10-year mark. We reminisced about our successes and failures and also about lessons that I learned along the way.

That conversation got me thinking about all that I have learned and led me to write a post about the 10 biggest lessons. I’ll share my thoughts on each one in a series of posts.

One of our early and most important aha moments was the importance of positioning – to thine own brand be true.

In the beginning, we were eager to drive sales, and as a result took whatever business came our way. This was a respectable short-term strategy as it helped us to keep money coming in and it showed that we had some level of competency in our industry. It did not, however, help to establish us as experts or differentiate us from the other event management and public relations agencies.

Once we became crystal clear on who we wanted to be, what we were passionate about and what we could execute flawlessly, we were able to be more selective in the types of projects we attracted. This led to us building our reputation as the go-to agency for nonprofits and innovative organizations that are looking to create targeted awareness through special events and public relations.

Sometimes, we are asked to work on projects that are interesting but outside of the scope of what we do exceedingly well, so we will decline the invitation. Some might say this is wrong, but it’s worked very well for us. In fact, our current client base serves as ambassadors for us, sharing with others how we created and executed a PR campaign that brought attention to a new initiative or how the fundraising event we planned increased revenues by 30%.

Does this mean that we are stuck in a box, fated to only to offer those services that we do today? No! As our expertise deepens, we will continue to strategically identify the areas that we want to grow with an eye toward what will be of the greatest value to our clients and strengthen the skills of our team.

Lesson learned:

  • Be clear and specific on how you want to position your businesses to connect with your target audiences.
  • Allow yourself the flexibility to revisit and modify this on a regular basis based on the market, your expertise and your growth plans.

How have you positioned your brand?