6 Great Brands & Why They Work

6 Brand Stories

I’ve been guest posting over on Laura Simms’ blog (formerly Create as Folk) for the past 6 months and, with my final Purpose Profile going live last week, I thought I’d highlight the full collection of profiles for you here. Nothing beats learning from concrete, behind-the-scenes stories of success!

But, first, I want to share a key insight that’s been really valuable to me while deconstructing these businesses that I admire. I feel that it demystifies branding in a pretty big way:

Your brand lives in your company’s innovation.

I know that ‘innovation’ can seem like a worn-out term reserved for IT executives, but here I am brushing it off, polishing it up, and reintroducing it to you as a shiny and worthy concept that all businesses need – large and small. Every single remarkable brand has innovated in some way; businesses fall flat without it. The smallest businesses can innovate. You can innovate. 

So when I’m trying to get to the root of what makes a company special, I stand back and look for the innovation. Where has it departed from the norm – even in small ways? Unfailingly, I’ll then dig deeper and find a belief, value, or purpose that catalyzed the brand into this interesting and distinctive direction. Smart innovation isn’t arbitrary; it’s the manifestation of a brand’s ideology or point of view.

So, here’s brand success, boiled down into two key ingredients:
1) Brand Success comes from Doing Things Differently. (Innovation)
2) Doing Things Differently comes from Seeing Things Differently. (Ideology or Point of View)

I’ve profiled 6 brilliant leaders that shook things up in their own ways because of their unique perspective and values.

  • Abby Kerr turned an obsession with voice and authenticity into a proprietary Voice Values system that helps clients speak up as themselves online.
  • Dana Claudat combines a passion for art and design into a more beautiful and approachable take on the traditionally esoteric field of Feng Shui.
  • With a dedication to authenticity in the media and helping women feel beautiful, Julia Church designed swimwear that’s inspired and modeled by real women and their stories.
  • Jennifer Lee was a pioneer for online creatives – an early asserter that your creativity is your most valuable asset. She transformed this thinking into a visual and crafty approach to business planning.
  • Alison Cayne believes in the power of home cooking with local food, and brings people together in a fun and beautiful class setting that makes it approachable and addictive.
  • Combining a penchant for honest storytelling with a curiosity for the unmistakable, Srinivas Rao provides a platform for instigators to unite and get inspired by the unconventional success story.

Dig into the stories of great brands and you’ll see the pattern every time – differing world views leading to distinctive behaviour. This is branding in its very simplest terms. Seems doable, doesn’t it?


Get Profiled.

I can help you see, articulate, and own how you see things differently.
I can help you translate that point of view into a concrete and distinctive approach that sets you apart.
And I can help you tie that point of view and approach to tangible promises of value that your customers actually care about.

This is what I do: I distill whirlwinds of ideas down into concrete statements and decisions. I get visionaries unstuck and moving forward confidently.

Are you ready for your True Brand Profile?