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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricky business » » Branding for Magicians: What is a brand? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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magic4u02
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Eternal Order
Philadelphia, PA
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Often times in this busy consumer world of ours, we come across the word “brand”, numerous amounts of time, even in just one afternoon. We see it on TV, in the mall and all around the world we live in. But what is a brand and what does it mean to you the performer? Can this brand idea work for me and if so how do I go about it?

Let me start by saying that a brand is a visual, emotional, rational and cultural image or feeling that one person associates with a company, product or service.

Companies with well established brands are the companies that we consumers remember when we go to make a purchase. We associate good feelings with the company or product and that influences what product we might buy on any given day.

For example, when you think of Nike, you think of certain visual and emotional responses. Some of the items that come to mind are, Michael Jordan, “Just Do It”, ahtletics, quality shoes and apparel. All of these images and feelings derive just from Nike’s succesful brand and brand message that they put out in the market place. The fact that you remember the brand name and have positive feelings toward that brand makes your product selection easier and enhances the value and satisfaction you get from the product.

You can think of your own brand as an investiment. It does not happen over night. The brand must be developed, nurtured and matured in the minds of the customer before you can reap your rewards. But is it worth it? Yes. Many companies have spent many dollars and much effort developing their brand and making sure their message gets out to the customer. Time is spent on building the perception of the brand in the minds of the indivduals your services are trying to target.

But why are brands important for the magician? The branding of your company and its products will increase the public awareness of your services. This, in turn, increases your reputation in the community for providing a quality product and the ultimate difference can be seen in the increased revenue that is generated by an increase in shows.

Branding will also provide a higher level of consistency and continuity in your advertising and marketing materials. The increased awareness will make your services and your products stand out from the others in your market, making it easier for people to buy your services over someone elses.

But what are parts of a good brand that will make people think positively towards my own brand? Brand elements such as logos, postcards, ads, posters, taglines and packaging are all key ingredients for creating these positive feelings toward any given brand. For example, if a person has a preception that shoes by Nike are top quality, they will look for the Nike logo where ever they go to buy shoes. This Nike logo then becomes a driving force in their mind. Whenever they see the Nike logo they will think quality products.

The first step in creating any good brand is to create a brand message statement. This statement tells, in few words, what business the company is in, what benefits it provides and why it is better than the competition. Once this brand statement is created, then every piece of your promotional materials needs to be able to reflect back on this statement and meet its criteria. If it does not, then the promotional piece is not working properly. This helps you to make sure that every piece of material that is used to promote your brand is consistent in its message to the consumer.

I hope this information has given you an idea of what branding is and how it can work for you.

I look forward to hearing your thoughts on this and your own opinions. I can be reached for immediate comment either by PMing me or via e-mail at magic4u02@aol.com.
Kyle Peron

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Frank Tougas
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Remember the Ed Sullivan Show? He had a lot of fabulous and world famous magicians on it. Don Alan, P.C. Socar, Milbourne Christopher, etc. His introduction always started out the same, "...and now..presenting for the kiddies.." I would contend that we already have some branding we have to overcome.

Your words of advice are informative and welcome. Any thoughts on undoing some of the bad reputation magicians are saddled with as a low form of entertainment? Las Vegas not withstanding.
Frank Tougas The Twin Cities Most "Kid Experienced" Children's Performer :"Creating Positive Memories...One Smile at a Time"
magic4u02
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Frank:

Thanks for the kind words and some excellent words for thought.

I would answer your question by first stating that you are correct in regards to already having to fight an uphill battle when you first start trying to create a brand or brand message for yourself as a performer.

But the first key to overcoming this poor and misconceived notion is to understand what these preceptions are in the first place.A performer could benefit a lot from researching this and finding out just what the target audience in his/her area really thinks about magicians and magic as a whole.

Once this information is gathered, it can be better understood and therefore you are better informed on how best to tackle it.

Once you know what people's preception of magic is, you can create your brand statement so that it best answers these questions and confronts them head on.

For example, if people preceive magic to be childish and amateur, then part of your brand message to the public must let them know that this is not the case and that your performance is professional in every way. Perhaps your tagline on an ad or postcard reads, "Award winning magic from the areas premiere illusionist." Your body copy could then highlight some of the awards you have won for your magic and point out your professionalism with quotes from satisfied clients.

Once you know what the preception of your target audience is, whether right or wrong, you can then direct your branding materials to change this preception around to your advantage.

I hope this helps answer your question and shine some light on just one of the many ways to confront this problem that all magicians are faced with.

I look forward to any thoughts or comments on this most interesting of questions. Thanks Frank for posting it.
Kyle Peron

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NJJ
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In Australia not only do I have to compete with the brand concept of "for the kiddies" but also the whole "Las Vegas" image.

Aussies are pretty cynical and the image of the Vegas magician prancing around in tight leather pants with one eye brow raised etc. is a large part of the normal image of magic.

Using words like "Illusionist" conjour up such images. In fact, I often avoid using the word 'magic' at all in my branding for my adult show.
TheDean
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As you read this response, please keep in mind that all I am advocating FOR is responsible and EFFECTIVE marketing for all my brothers and sisters!

You may, or may not agree with my 30 years of experience and over 25,000 live show results in this arena, but if I have at-least challenged us to "THINK" about what is responsible and effective marketing, then I have added to and furthered this discussion and all our brothers and sisters in the arts.

For THAT, I am grateful!

Here we go...

"Branding" is a nice idea, but for 99.9% of ALL of magicdom, is a general waste of time and money if 'branding' is your goal.

On the whole, branding is merely a "means" value and NOT and "ends" value... in this case, the ends does NOT justify the means.

Even Lance Burton, David Copperfield couldn't care less about "branding" if it doesn't SELL tickets, bookings and add revenue to the bottom line. (With the possible exception of PR) In "some" very rare and unique cases (in entertainment) branding is a plus, but for all the rest of us, it is totally inconsequential and useless!

EGO doesn't sell bookings! [Branding = EGO!]

Please understand me correctly, I understand that "image" advertising (The most ineffective sort of marketing ever) and branding is the popular bill o' fair amongst "ad houses" and their sales teams, but it is, on the whole, a big-fat waste of time and money and is the most ineffective use of our marketing resources. (Yes, even for McDonalds! - Even though THEY do it. - Different deal... THEY HAVE millions to blow on this sort of folly!)

There is not enough space on this forum to ferret-out all the reasons why "Branding" and "Image advertising" really are a huge waste of time and money. It will suffice to say your dollars are much better spent in other, waaaaay more effective, arenas.

Keep in mind, I'm NOT saying that branding is not a lofty goal as a "byproduct" of responsible marketing of our products and services. We DO need to be cognizant of the branding issue from the get-go while designing our "image", but by a long shot is not even a schosh-bit important to the long-term use of your effective marketing strategies... especially for NOW! (assuming you are making less than $40+ million a year in personal net income!)

Please keep in mind: I am PASSIONATE about 'effective' marketing... (especially for our performance family!) It's just that "branding" as a marketing goal is not as effective as almost every other form of responsible marketing for MOST of us here! (If not ALL!)

I know it sounds like I'm against branding... I'm NOT!

I'm only against the fact that most so-called agencies sell image and branding as "THE" only way to go with our marketing dollars, only to be RIPPED-OFF by these so-called professional ad house agencies for the sake of selling us an image campaign! (and usually for BIG money with little or no discernable return! - THAT makes me MAD!)

Here is only ONE of a few rules by which ALL your "effective" marketing MUST be held accountable to:
- 1) IS IT TRACEABLE? REALLY? Can you track where the RESULTS of every-single penny is spent and the REAL RESULTS it produced!?!

If it cannot, then run, do-not walk, the other way!

Newspaper ads, the phone book, parent magazines are NOT accountable or traceable in any-way shape or form... and are usually the MOST expensive form of advertising! YES, even with a coupon or a call to action!)

Ya' know why? Cuz they can't PROVE that it isn't working! How ****** is THAT!? (Welcome to the "Ad-House agency scam" world!)

Let me explain: FIRST, you REALLY have no idea exactly how many eyeballs saw your add in the first place! How can you "track" when you have NO IDEA how many impressions you actually had? The results are arbitrary at best!

Not at all accountable! You see, the ad-house, phone book, parent mag sales rep will sell you a bunch of bunk! - and NO traceable, accountable RESULTS!

Before you string me up, YES you can track the "responses" in your ad if you put your ad together responsibly. But like I said, if you have no idea how many people saw your add, and then how many people then actually responded, you really have no real idea as to the true effectiveness of your campaign, do you?

Make sense?

I'm NOT saying that you shouldn't advertise... I'm not saying that at all! I'm just posing some thoughts for your consideration!

YOU choose what you wish to do with your marketing dollars, but if it were me, I'd want to eek every penny out of every dollar I spend!

How 'bout You?? "THINK" and Grow Rich!

Is there MORE??? You bectha'!

Just try not to get RIPPED in the mean-while!

I am at your service and in His service,
Deano
Smile
Dean Hankey, *M.D. - The Dean of Success Solutions!
Serving & Supporting YOU and Your Success!
"Book More Shows... Make More Money... SERVE MORE PEOPLE! - Not Necessarily In That Order…"

(*Marketing Doctor) Smile
Christopher
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Quote:
On 2003-07-18 20:23, Nicholas J. Johnson wrote:
In fact, I often avoid using the word 'magic' at all in my branding for my adult show.


Nicholas,

I agree. In much of my advertising, and even on my business cards, I don't mention the word 'magic'. I can't even begin to count the number of times, when introduced as a magician, I have adults start talking about their children and birthday parties. I do a lot of different venues.

In ticket selling situations, when I approach someone and mention the show, I'm often told "sorry, I don't have any children" or "my children are too old for this". Just recently, I had a family reunion chairperson call and ask if I would be able to keep the kids attention at the party. It seems that their family was gifted with extra intelligent 12 year olds, and she was worried that they would be too old to enjoy magic.
magic4u02
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This brings me back to the point where I mentioned about a brand message and a brand image. If you are constantly getting these questions from people, yet your target market is older adults and adult magic shows, then you need to re-evaluate your brand image and your brand message.

Your brand message should state what your target market is and why you are better then anyone else doing it. All of your promotional materials will need to reflect the fact that you do professional adult shows.

If the questions you're getting are constantly geared towards children's style magic, then your brand image and message to the public needs to help change this preconceived notion.

You're already half way there because you already know what the problem is. Now you just have to find the best way to address the problem in your own market.
Kyle Peron

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TheDean
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It's time to clear things up... some definitions we are using here are incorrect.

Branding is NOT marketing... it is only ONE SMALL ELEMENT of the marketing over-all plan. You "can" add to the so-called branding process, but it is not what you do... it is what happens when you market over either:

- a) LOTS of money!
- b) LOTS of time!

...and the result is NOT usually monumental sales or/and sort of discernable results. THAT'S why we say the branding is not very effective. "IF" it happens over time, then GREAT, but that is NOT the goal for the seasoned professional. RESULTS are the benchmark of great marketing!

So, your card and what it does or does not have on it is NOT branding all by itself.

More clear?

The VERY BEST way to assure a positive
"branding" is to help more people get more of what they want and need. Then, over time, you will start to generate a positive brand recognition.

Your "branding message" and "branding image" are long term investments.

Truthfully, your time and money is waaaaaaaaay better spent on a strong healthy USA (Unique Selling Advantage)

Your USA is the ONE THING in your over-all marketing plan that will deliver the highest RESULTS, sales, bookings and blessed lifestyle that we all dream about! Your USA is the ONLY THING that YOU can do, from the perspective of your buyers, that solves their most challenging consideration when booking live entertainment.

NOT some "cute" catch-phrase that doesn't help anyone.

EXAMPLE:
- Cute catch phrase:
“Just Do It”

What challenge or problem does that solve?

It DOESN'T! Oh sure... it's cute, but it doesn't help anyone! And it took nearly 10 times as many marketing dollars (Billions) to "brand" that message.

Most of us don't have billions of (extra) dollars to spend on "branding" alone. It just doesn't make good sense!

Now an alternative... a few 'classic' examples:

- STRONG Bold, Benefit - USA:
"Fresh Hot Pizza delivered In 30 Minutes or Less, or it's FREE!"

- STRONG USA:
"When It Absolutely, Positively HAS To Be There Overnight & ON TIME!... Guaranteed!"

Which of these two styles of marketing provide more long-term SOLUTIONS for the potential market share?

And at considerably less money to implement and maintain... and at the same time, it provided literally thousands (1,000's) of times the returns and "results" that that silly Nike catch-phrase did!

Valuable RESULTS and RETURNS on our marketing investments... Now THAT'S what WE are looking for... right?

Don't take my word for it, ask Jim Snack, Steve Hart, Dave Dee, Randy Charach, Millard Grubb, Jay Abraham, Dan Kennedy and the other FULL-TIME Magic and marketing professionals around here.

Like I said... just another offering and experience for your thoughtful consideration.

I remain at your service and in His service,
Deano

Smile
Dean Hankey, *M.D. - The Dean of Success Solutions!
Serving & Supporting YOU and Your Success!
"Book More Shows... Make More Money... SERVE MORE PEOPLE! - Not Necessarily In That Order…"

(*Marketing Doctor) Smile
Lee Darrow
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One area in which branding CAN assist in improving the bottom line is the use of the catch phrase in search engines.

By having a catch phrase that I use in each of my shows (The Interactive Entertainer (sm), the Man Everybody Sleeps For (sm), etc.) someone who wants to find me online can use those phrases to find me and, perhaps book me. This is especially useful when using meta-tags (a hidden set of words or phrases on a web site that browsers look at to find people). Put your slogans IN your meta-tags and you will improve your "find-ability" online.

Ammar's KISS (Keep It Slogan Simple) concept is particularly appropriate to web-based advertising and marketing.

People search on specific things. If your slogan resonates during a show, they will find you, even if they don't recall your name.

However, that should NOT be a major factor in use of branding. Just a contributory one that can possibly garner some $$ if you handle the front end (the show and linking the slogan to YOU) in their heads.

As one of the other posts noted - Brand = ego. Truer words...

If it doesn't help the bottom line (which even PR does as it drives sales and recognition in the mind of the public), then it may well be a waste of time.

Just a few thoughts...

Lee Darrow, C.Ht.
http://www.leedarrow.com
<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
TheDean
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Hey Brother Lee,

Good to see you here!

Great addition to the subject...

The good news is, as far as web-sites go, is what ever you appropriately (and methodically choose) put into your meta-tags, alt-tags, keywords and your browser title bar will all assist in getting search returns.

If we do our marketing correctly (NOT 'branding', but marketing...) in the FIRST-PLACE, you will be sending qualified views to your web site with-out the aid of any search engine.

Sure, it's OK to get the accidental tourist who stumbles upon your site while surfing, but the "On-PURPOSE" visitor is much more likely to book you... and isn't THAT the bottom line?

By the way, OVERTURE has a great 'search-term' tool that is very useful in actually determining how the masses "actually" search to find sites or subjects. (or NOT)

Though a random search will not often term with your name or catch phrase, they will search by more general terms like:

- Entertainment in Reno (or Your City...)
- Reno Entertainment
- Magic in Reno
...etc.

If they are going to search terms by your catch phrase, your USA (Unique Sales Advantage) or any other phrase, why not make the extra effort to indelibly etch YOUR product NAME rather than anything else?

Again, "branding" is not what you "do", it's what eventually happens as a result of investing in your marketing. MARKETING is what you do! Branding a one small part of the returns you get when you market correctly... make sense?

I know... you say Tomato, I say Tomato. (Not sure THAT ol' phrase works here on the internet... More of an auditory skill-set - Hehehehe!)

SALES, on the other-hand is what you can DO now and achieve the RESULTS we are all after right now! Right?

GREAT DISCUSSION, ALL!

I am at your service and in His service,
Deano

Smile
Dean Hankey, *M.D. - The Dean of Success Solutions!
Serving & Supporting YOU and Your Success!
"Book More Shows... Make More Money... SERVE MORE PEOPLE! - Not Necessarily In That Order…"

(*Marketing Doctor) Smile
Neale Bacon
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I see branding as a good thing if done right.

My goal in branding is to have people say "I don't want a magician, I want Neale Bacon" or "I don't want a clown, I want Professor Pickles."

My card says I am a Family Entertainment Specialist, and that helps to show I can entertain all ages.

It also indicates I don't do bars etc (Just leaves more shows for those who do)

Smile
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
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magic4u02
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Pickles:
It is what I call an appropriate "Brand Message". If you have a good brand message, then this is what all your materials and your copy should always refer back to. It is a blue print for proper marketing for you and your show.

If you mainly are targeting children's entertainment and parties, then your brand message to the possible clients should also reflect this as well.
Kyle Peron

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Wolfgang
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I may not know as much about branding as others who have posted here. But I have learned a few things doing advertising and branding for national and global clients.

And to me, it boils down to this: a brand is a promise.

(BTW, I work with the guy who did the very first Nike "Just Do It" advertising, and if you don't think his efforts have accomplished much, consider that Nike charges more for their shoes and sells more shoes for the sole reason that there's a swoosh on them. That's the power of branding.)
"Sure, I do Scotch and Soda in every show. What? You mean there's a trick by that name?"
TheDean
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Maybe it really doesn't matter, and maybe this distinction is pointless, but "branding" is not marketing!

It's only PART of marketing. ...and for MOST, if not all of us, a VERY tiny-weenie PART!)

Here is what the Dictionary says about BRAND:

brand (brand) n 1) A trademark or label
2) A make; kind 3) A mark burned on the
hide of an animal. 4) A mark of disgrace;
stigma - v 1) to make with a brand 2) to
stigmatize

I'm not trying to be "trying" here, it's just that marketing is potentially difficult enough to make it more confusing by swapping words and definitions willy-nilly with no rhyme or reason to it.

PLEASE, please, please, please, please understand my heart on this issue - - My passion is for super "EFFECTIVE" marketing that is accountable and produces REAL RESULTS for average guys like you n' me! I'm frustrated, disgusted and down right sick n' tired of most so-called advertising agencies taking advantage of the their client by selling them completely ineffective marketing JUST to win awards.

Oh sure... it "looks" pretty! But what the heck did it do to add-to and support the bottom line? I apologize if I offend you in any way, but it just irks me to see my brothers and sisters in the art being misled or blatantly RIPPED-OFF by such tactics... it's just wrong!

If it seems as though I'm zealous about this stuff, you are RIGHT!

What is the difference between "effective" marketing and "ineffective" marketing?

"Effective" marketing MUST, by definition be EFFECTIVE!

Keep in mind, for THIS discussion, I am taking about and TO "you n' me" , here and in the arts who generally do-NOT have the resources (Millions and Billions of dollars!) to mount and all-out assault on the senses to gain some "brand" outcome such as Nike, IBM, McDonalds, Calvin Kline and so on... OK?

Am I saying that "brand recognition" is a bad thing? NO WAY!

Am I saying that achieving some "brand" recognition in your own market is do-able? I'm not saying that at all! It's VERY do-able!

BUT, and that's my big butt, is so-called "branding", the best bang for your marketing buck... no friggen' way! It's probably the LEAST, and it's certainly the least effective, accountable and will unfortunately produce no discernable results.

Who wants to waste all kinds of money on one intsy-winsy niche in marketing that doesn't produce maximum RESULTS for the investment made???

Not ME!

First-off, most of the ad houses (Rip-Off artists!) couldn't even TELL you what RESULT their so called (institutional, ego driven, image) marketing campaign even did to advance your cause! Ya' know... that little thing called "BOOK YOU PAYING GIGS, and for MORE MONEY!!!"

No my friends, (for us...) "branding" will not provide you with the solutions you need and desire!

- No logo will book you more shows!
- No slick 6 color, wiz-bang marketing, document with a cool pop-up die-cut thingy will produce a single gig if it has no real EFFECTIVE marketing applied to it! (Like a powerful persuasive, bold benefit oriented copy with a powerful and emotional CALL TO ACTION!)

Sure, those things can add to the influence process, but by themselves... the forecast is grim.

To-date, I have NOT seen a stunningly beautiful, full color marketing piece for any professional performer that, on it's own, will produce a real live paying gig... I keep looking and hoping against all hopes, but it just doesn't happen!

Somebody - PLEASE, show me I'm wrong!

KEEP IN MIND WHAT I'M AFTER HERE...

Honestly, I'm looking out for YOUR best interests and outcomes!

I want you to have SUPER-EFFECTIVE Marketing that will produce an avalanche of real, LIVE RESULTS for you and your families! Is that so bad?

If I have to raise some hairs to support you in that process, I am willing to be the bad-guy then and risk you hating me, BUT if I get just "one more of you" to begin to THINK and question you ideas about what WORKS and want doesn't? Well then, I've done my job!

Please, once again. I'd like to point out that I'm NOT saying that branding, as an investment in marketing is a bad thing (for the mega-companies that can afford to do such things!)

WHAT I "am" saying is, if you want truly EFFECTIVENESS, accountability and real RESULTS for your marketing dollars, then you want MARKETING, and not hat little potential benefit of marketing called 'branding'.

Make sense?

I sure HOPE it does!

If this gets you hot under the collar... good!
If this makes your blood boil... even better!
If this cause you to loose control and be meaner than snot... bless you!
If this drives you insane and causes you to go on a posting spree, righting all the wrongs and injustices in the world then God Bless You!

In order for this discussion to advance in any REAL way, you need to:
- a) Have the FACTS so that you can make an "informed" opinion and add to the discussion responsibly
- b) Be a little more "passionate" as to what is REALLY going on out there and how the proliferation of mis-information is potentially RUINING you business and your ability for a phenomenal lifestyle as a well-paid, busy professional doing what you LOVE to do!

...Make sense?

Ask yourself THIS:
- From whom am I getting my "success" advice from???
- Are they where I want to be??? (Full-Time performing artists enjoying the lifestyle that each of you deserve!? - We are blessed to have guys like Steve Hart, Jim Snack and others around here... woo hoo!)
- Are THEY producing the real RESULTS with this marketing that I want and need???

... well meaning, well intentioned, loving people all have equal opportunity to share around the internet and it's sometimes hard to KNOW who to take your success support from and who is full of "it" and the full range and spectrum inbetween!

If your gunna' raise your marketing sword in an attempt to slay the mighty marketing dragon, you want to make sure that you have the right weapon and that your sword is a sharp as possible so-as to affect the mightiest outcome with each swing of your weapon.

That's all...

As odd, simple, silly, mushy and it may sound... My PASSION is YOUR SUCCESS!

Of that I am guilty...

I am at your service and in His service,
Deano

PS
"THINK" and Grow RICH!
Dean Hankey, *M.D. - The Dean of Success Solutions!
Serving & Supporting YOU and Your Success!
"Book More Shows... Make More Money... SERVE MORE PEOPLE! - Not Necessarily In That Order…"

(*Marketing Doctor) Smile
Wolfgang
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Quote:
On 2003-07-28 12:54, TheDean wrote:
Maybe it really doesn't matter, and maybe this distinction is pointless, but "branding" is not marketing!

It's only PART of marketing. ...and for MOST, if not all of us, a VERY tiny-weenie PART!)

PS
"THINK" and Grow RICH!


To be honest, I had a hard time making sense out of most of your post, but I do think you are wrong about branding being part of marketing.

It is the other way around. Marketing is part of branding, and it is a small part, at that.

Branding is your name, how you dress, how you answer the phone, how you greet a client, how you perform a show, how you follow up with a customer, and how you market yourself (to name just a few aspects).

Doing all this in a consistent, effective manner reinforces the brand promise you make to customers to consistently deliver a product that meets their expectations.

Why you would discourage people from properly branding their services puzzles me. When, for the most part, it doesn't cost anything.

You say people are trying to mislead others on this thread. But it seems to me your knowledge of ad agencies and how they brand products is not only limited, but inaccurate as well.

I'm not saying I have all the answers. I'm not trying to sell anyone anything here. I'm not trying to get them to visit my web site. And I'm not promising to help them grow rich. I'm just trying to offer some simple advice that comes from years of experience branding products and services.

Those of us who have done it know that it works. I've done it for some of the largest brands in the world, and I've done it for small mom and pop shops. You don't need millions of dollars. You just need common sense.
"Sure, I do Scotch and Soda in every show. What? You mean there's a trick by that name?"
Zack
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This is an interesting thread. Its making me think. I come from the same school as Dean (Dan Kennedy). What are we talking about when we talk about branding and USPs? I began to amuse myself to think of some very well branded companies and their USA's:.

DiGiorno Pizza:

BRAND: "Its not Delivery, its Digiorno"

USP: "Pizza that's just as good as delivery pizza, at half the cost, that can be bought ahead of time and heated in your oven in tthe same time it would take for the delivery guy to get there.

Hyundai:

BRAND: "The Hyundai Advantage."

USP: We are the new kids on the block, and we royally screwed up by making ****py cars the first few years we wer ein business, but we are better now, and to make up for ou8r mistake, we will sell you a good car at several thousand dollars below our competitors AND back it up with a ten year warranty.


DENNY'S

BRAND: The Yellow and Red sign.

USP: Consistant American food, open 24 hours, and available everywhere.

Here are some ways that I think branding COULD work in our business:

COSTUME: Wearing a consistant look helps people remember you. Fans of Brian Flora will rememeber his top hat and red vest.

Name: Its a bizarred phenomenon, but Laypeople never, ever, rememeber magicians names. Ever. I've always found it interesting that more magicians don't give themselves more interesting names to counteract this phenomenon. "Bizarro" is a great name, hard to forget. "The Amazing Johnathan" is good. "Sylvester the Jester" is good. Lance Burton uses his name as a mgigc word, helping people remember that.

All that being said, one must be very careful, as Dean says, to avoid giving too much money to advertising people who will want to design logos, letterheads, and the like in the name of "branding." This kind of stuff is a waste of money.
TheDean
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Quote:
I do think you are wrong about branding being part of marketing.


That's OK. You too are welcome to your opinion - - The GREAT news is, we can agree to disagree, agreeably, right?

Quote:
It is the other way around. Marketing is part of branding, and it is a small part, at that.

Branding is how you dress, how you answer the phone, how you greet a client, how you perform a show, how you follow up with a customer, and how you market yourself (to name just a few aspects). Doing all this in a consistent, effective manner reinforces the brand promise you make to customers to consistently deliver a product that meets their expectations.


Funny, if that is so, why are all the agencies called advertising and MARKETING? and not branding agencies...do understand that with-out MARKETING, there IS no "branding"

How can you "brand" something if it hasn't effectively been marketed?

I guess to each there own interpretation of that facts.

Quote:
Why you would discourage people from properly branding their services puzzles me. When, for the most part, it doesn't cost anything.


I am in NO WAY trying discourage anyone from "branding" their product. If you will actually READ my offerings and experiences, you will see that I re-state, over and over again that I think brand is a wonderful outcome and by-product of "marketing"! Only that spending our resources on "branding" as the outcome, when IMPROVING OUR BUSINESS AND BOOKINGS is what everyone "says" they want most.

For over 25 years, I have only done what I can, in my own small way to support and advance the arts and I have NEVER received a dime for that effort... I have only ONE "agenda" here... it's to honestly HELP by presenting information for others to be able to make up their own minds. How is That evil??

I'm ONLY trying to support the VERY BEST use of "effective marketing" producing the best RESULTS and outcomes for my friends and family in the arts.

Why do you feel the need to launch false accusations at me for trying to HELP?

Besides, if you don't "agree", I honor your perogative, but there is no reason to be nasty.

Quote:
You say people are trying to mislead others on this thread. But it seems to me your knowledge of ad agencies and how they brand products is not only limited, but inaccurate as well.


Really... hmmm. Based on what REAL information do you come to such an erroneous conclusion. Like I said, you are certainly welcome to your "opinions" as am I, but I have loads of experience, as do you, but you don't se me knocking you, do you?

Quote:
I'm not saying I have all the answers. I'm not trying to sell anyone anything here.


...are you KIDDING ME? (This is a joke... right?)

Neither am I! - - Why do you make these unfounded and blatantly false implications?

I realize that when you do such a thing, you think it strengthens your point when in fact it only serves to HURT your credibility... the TRUTH will always WIN out!

I have nothing to "sell" accept the IDEA maybe that their is a better way to get the RESULTS that our brothers and sisters really DESERVE!

How can THAT be bad???

I make NOTHING off all this, accept the pleasure I receive when I see people become more successful by applying the information I offer for FREE! - - Now "I" am puzzled!

Quote:
I'm not trying to get them to visit my web site.


I'm not trying to get anyone to visit my FREE website in my posts... ever!

Yes, it's true, and I have never hid the fact that since 1989, I have hosted a 100% FREE website that address the personal and business development issues of our arts. Funny you should mention that I some how have "profit" motives,.Like I said, the site has been 100% FREE from it's inception!

...FREE to every one but ME that is!

You see, it COSTS real money for guys like Steve, Kevin James, The Hocus-Pocus gang and myself to host such a worthwhile place on the net... but for EVERYONE, it's all FREE... no strings attached!

Is that evil too?

Even if I did, as you suggest, try to unduly persuade anyone to go to our "University Of Success" site, how is that BAD???

Since long before "The Magic Café'" was born, my brother Steve and I have enjoyed a "shared content and cross promotions" agreement, and honestly I have spent many more time promoting and edifying this fine community that STEVE has been kind enough to place here for our communications on these subjects! I say God Bless Steve!

Quote:
And I'm not promising to help them grow rich.


WOW... this is amazing!
Am I the only one who sees this???

It's like one kindergartener sayin: "You ARE, but What am I?" How do you respond to this sort of childish play???

ALL I DID WAS... simply post a "positive sentiment" and a very well known book title, (which I quote quite frequently) and now I'm somehow falsely "promising to help people to grow rich"? like some scam artist... I don't think so!

See how you weaken you position with hyperbole and misrepresenting the facts...

I have ONLY been straight forward, honest and forthcoming with my posts here and around the net. I have never even raised an eyebrow in regards to my "heart-felt and earnest intentions" to HELP, till now. Honestly, I don't like it. It feels lousy.

Not your problem... it's mine. I guess I just don't like being beat-up for trying to help. When I post, I post from my HEART and 30 years of real world, where the rubber meets the road- TESTED and PROVEN RESULTS and I guess I just am "TOO" open with my sharing... sorry!

Quote:
I'm just trying to offer some simple advice that comes from years of experience branding products and services.


Ah... now it become clearer... you are from the AGENCY background.

I see.

It's TRUE agencies do not like my brand of:
- RESULTS
- ACCOUNTABILITY
- PROOF
...and open, honest flow of information, looking out for the best interest of the relationship and the BOTTOM LINE for the business!

You see, I have NOTHING to SELL here... no clients I'm bilking for scads of money, only to deliver sub-par results for the money spent... no, not me!

It might be time to dig out at old mirror, dust it off n' have a peek at what you see brother.

Quote:
Those of us who have done it know that it works. I've done it for some of the largest brands in the world, and I've done it for small mom and pop shops. You don't need millions of dollars. You just need common sense.


NOW THAT"S the only thing you've said that I agree with... I mean the COMMON SENSE part!

KEEP IN MIND that I have NEVER said branding is not a good thing... ever. What I HAVE said is, again, if your gunna' spend your hard-earned money on marketing yourself, why not expect and get the most profound return on that investment possible???

In my "EXPERIENCE", that is NOT "branding".

Give me or any other "responsible" professional the same budget as you might consider for a "branding" campaign and watch the RESULTS for the investment SKYROCKET!

For the same money, I have seen results waaaaay over THOUSANDS of times the RESULTS and RETUNES than the branding process alone!

It may not be what YOU like to hear, but the PROVEN FACT DON'T LIE!

Let me ask you a question. Which of these scenarios is more forthright and responsible from the perspective of 99% of the posters here who are just trying to get more gigs and make a better part-time income or better support our families with a growing performance business?

- a) Spend $10.00 to $10,000.00 to get "known"
- b) Invest $10.00 to $10,000.00 produce RESULTS that get you booked!

See, 'branding" doesn't sell shows, sales and marketing close deals...

"Effective MARKETING and outreach" helps to solve your clients wants, needs, desires, dreams and most pressing considerations.

How does "Just Do It" do any of that? - - it doesn't!

or as you said:
Quote:
"it boils down to this: a brand is a promise."


Where's the "promise" in that?

There is no 'promise", inducement, offer, anything! How does that help top provide a profitable solution for our business friends?

The bottom line... no matter how you lean on this issue:
POUND for POUND, truly EFFECTIVE MARKETING will out perform just "branding" ANY DAY OF THE WEEK!

In either-event, Have an awesome day...

I remain at your service and in HIS Service,
Deano

"THINK and Grow RICH" - Nice thought, eh' ?

God Bless You ALL!
Dean Hankey, *M.D. - The Dean of Success Solutions!
Serving & Supporting YOU and Your Success!
"Book More Shows... Make More Money... SERVE MORE PEOPLE! - Not Necessarily In That Order…"

(*Marketing Doctor) Smile
Brent Allan
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Chicago
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A lot of this discussion goes hand in hand with a book I am currently reading called "Your Marketing Sucks"

Appropriate title, eh?

I don't have the book right in front of me, so I cannot remember the author's name. It can be bought at Border's though.
Turn your business card into a relentless salesperson that brings you business!

http://www.TransformYourBusinesscard.com
Wolfgang
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Loyal user
TEXAS
221 Posts

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TheDean doth protest too much, methinks.
"Sure, I do Scotch and Soda in every show. What? You mean there's a trick by that name?"
TheDean
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Reno, Nevada
2164 Posts

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I guess it's a matter of perspective.

Passion or protest?

For me, It's about really HELPING and leaving the world a better place for it...
Dean Hankey, *M.D. - The Dean of Success Solutions!
Serving & Supporting YOU and Your Success!
"Book More Shows... Make More Money... SERVE MORE PEOPLE! - Not Necessarily In That Order…"

(*Marketing Doctor) Smile
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