TWIST Your Elevator Pitch to Stand Out

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I finally established my full-time career coaching practice but my “elevator pitch” was far from stellar. There were dozens of other coaches saturating the landscape: life coaches, career coaches, purpose coaches, coaches for coaches… so how would I stand out? It was time to hone my elevator pitch, add a TWIST that would distinguish me from other coaches and be more compelling. When faced with skepticism or confused stares, how could I succinctly explain to people what I did for a living, and powerfully demonstrate my value in a less-than-two minute pitch?

And then, I happened to notice a TV commercial for a local gym. Actually, it hit me like a ton of bricks (or maybe a dumbbell): I’m like a fitness trainer, but for your job search and career development. What would it look like if I TWISTED my career coaching business with a gym instructor?

  • A fitness trainer guides you but you do the heavy lifting. I provide the guidance and outline the career roadmap, but my clients have to take the action themselves to achieve their professional goals.
  • A fitness trainer helps you to be fitter and more attractive. I help my clients polish their professional skills and appear more attractive to current bosses and prospective employers alike.
  • A fitness trainer boosts your confidence. I empower my clients to impress their colleagues at the next big meeting, or crush that important company-wide presentation, or ace their next job interview.
  • A fitness trainer helps you increase your speed and agility. I help my clients achieve their professional goals more efficiently, with less time spent on excuses and more time spent on action; I provide critical support and guidance to accelerate career progress and overcome past hurdles.
  • A fitness trainer is a waste of money if you’re not ready to hustle. I only work with clients who want to improve on their weaknesses and are willing to put in the work on a regular basis. Whether they want to level-up in their current company or switch careers entirely, the path to success often requires weeks or months of effort. It doesn’t happen overnight.

So, much like a fitness instructor, I provide a strategic mix of support and heavy-duty accountability, with a kick in the rear when it’s needed most. Now my elevator pitch has the TWIST to help my business get remembered, “Take a gym instructor and TWIST it with business goals and you have a career coach.”

About the author:

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David Wiacek is a NY-based, globally-minded career coach and copywriter. He helps squash his clients’ fears and brings back wonder into their professional lives. He also crafts catchy copy for businesses—both in print and online. Check out his work at davidthefixer.com

 

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Finding the right TWIST can help your brand innovate and deliver. In TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands, Brand School founder Julie Cottineau provides a clear road map to build a stronger more distinctive brand – complete with examples from real life small business owners who have successfully completed our Brand School program. Pick up your copy today.

Teaching the Twist – Quick Twist Video #11

 

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Branding is something you do every day, every minute to connect with your audience and ultimately create a more powerful and profitable business.  Julie Cottineau, BrandTwist and Brand School founder, author of TWIST and former VP of Brand at Virgin, discusses the inextricable link between brand and business strategy.

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TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands by Brand School founder Julie Cottineau

“This book is a gift to small business owners, packed with information and strategies for potent branding, and full of obvious experience, wisdom and from-the-ground knowledge.” - Sarah Hinawi, executive director, Purpl Center for Learning and Social Innovation

How to Twist Outside the Box This Father’s Day

Everyone understands the annual struggle of finding the perfect gift for dad on Father’s day. No matter what kind of person your dad is, finding a gift that’s thoughtful and that he might actually use is always tricky. It’s easy to find yourself slipping into the traditional last minute habit of buying him yet another tie, but this year, try stepping up your Father’s Day gift game by taking a generic gift idea and adding a TWIST that is sure to secure your spot as the favorite child.

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For the runner: 2015-2016 has certainly been the year for workout technology. New gadgets promising a better workout have flooded the market, but what makes one fancy pedometer better than another? A good twist to give your father is the Garmin Forerunner 620 GPS Running Watch. The twist for this watch is that it, unlike some of the big name fitness monitors, is built specifically for runners and not only records your progress every run, but gives you advice on what more you are capable of doing in the future to help you continue to improve.

 

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For the handy-man: A crafty guy who loves DIY projects needs way more than just your basic hammer and nails to really be able to build something special. But a complete tool box can be very expensive. A great twist on this classic gift for a do-it-yourself dad would be the Dremel Oscillating Tool Kit. This single tool has over 30 different functions your father can try out on his next project without taking up too much space.

 

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For the foodie: Instead of getting your food-loving dad some more pots and pans, spend a Saturday with him at the Smorgasburg Food Festival in Brooklyn! The vendors at this outdoor festival specialize in twisting classic foods into new, unique creations such as the ramen burger (which features ramen noodles as the buns for a classic burger) or a hotdog from Asia dog (a hot dog with asian inspired toppings such as Japanese curry or asian sesame slaw.) All of these vendors twisting their food will be sure to wow and inspire your father, plus he will get to spend the day with you!

 

Screen Shot 2016-06-06 at 3.40.42 PMFor the outdoorsman: For activities like camping, conserving space and versatility are key functions when deciding what to bring on the trail. Rather than just getting your dad some more fishing line, try the Alex water bottle. The twist for this bottle is that it, literally, twists open and turns into a bowl that you can eat out. The bottle opening also helps make cleaning it easy. This gift is something your father can bring along and use anywhere without weighing down his backpack.

 

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For the entrepreneur: If your father has his own business, help give his brand a boost this father’s day by giving him TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands, The book is sure to help your dad learn the in’s and out’s of twisting himself and gain tools to make his personal brand even better. He’ll learn how to take off his “brand blinders” and look outside his category to make his business stand out and thrive in this competitive market, which will certainly help make this father’s day memorable for him.

 

About the Author:

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Kate Gouran is working as an intern at BrandTwist for this month. She is a high school senior from Hastings-on-Hudson and will be graduating from Hastings high school in June. She is very excited to be attending Tulane University in the fall and she plans on double majoring in marketing and musical theater.

 

 

Interested in guest blogging for BrandTwist? Contact jamie@brandtwist.com.

An Airport TWIST Makes Wait Time More Fun

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Today’s traveler spends increasingly longer time waiting at airports. To address this, many airports offer more conveniences than ever before from health clinics, beauty salons and gyms, to designer brands, fine dining and entertainment – but every airport is different and most travelers are not aware of what’s available. Flyinstyle app solves this problem with a TWIST. It’s an interactive consumer app that connects you to all the concessions and goodies an airport has to offer- plus bonuses and discounts.

Says Flyinstyle Founder & CEO Amanda Anthony, “Our aim is to improve the airport experience, enhance communication between consumers and airports/airlines/brands/concessionaires…” *

Anthony saw that there were few options available to let travelers know about brands, products and retailers at airports. Thinking, “We could use an app for that” * she set out to create Flyinstyle, a personal shopper/travel airport guide available right on your mobile device. It allows retailers to directly connect and engage with travelers, offers special deals and discounts, has a blog giving travel tips and news, and users can share their first-hand airport stories.


Flyinstyle app is a TWIST that makes it easier for airport businesses to reach consumers and for consumers to get more enjoyment from airport travel. What TWIST would make it easier for your customer to enjoy your product or service. Is there a missing piece preventing you from getting the word out to your customer?

 

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Finding the right TWIST can help your brand innovate and deliver. In TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands, Brand School founder Julie Cottineau provides a clear road map to build a stronger more distinctive brand – complete with examples from real life small business owners who have successfully completed our Brand School program. Pick up your copy today.

* The Moodie Interview

It’s time to Twist – Quick Twist Video #10

 

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There’s never been a more exciting time to be a brander – or a more challenging time. Julie Cottineau, BrandTwist and Brand School founder, author of TWIST and former VP of Brand at Virgin, shares the importance of strong brands in today’s crowded and ever-changing brandscape.

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TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands by Brand School founder Julie Cottineau.

“This bold book encourages entrepreneurs and brand owners across all types of businesses to think outside the limits of their category and take risks, and gives them the tools to make them stand out from their competitors.” - Laura Winston, attorney, Kim Winston LLP

Toys With A Life Saving Twist

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Organ donation can be an uncomfortable topic and for some countries, like Japan, it is a particularly sensitive area and rarely discussed. This gap in awareness means that many do not receive life-saving donations – and children, in particular suffer from a shortage of donors more than most of the population. Second Life Toys is an organization in Japan that’s using a clever and endearing TWIST to raise awareness about organ donation for children.

They take donations of loved but no longer needed, injured, used plush toys and perform “transplants”, making them whole again. This campaign not only raises awareness in general, but also helps children gain a better understanding about transplants in a way that they can instantly relate to, with the comfort of new-found toy friend.

When you become a “donor” and donate your own unwanted stuffed toys you’ll receive a letter of thanks from the “recipient” telling you how your donation has helped them.

Second Life Toys took a painful, taboo topic and TWISTED with a beautifully simple idea – re-furbish donated toys to explain and promote organ donation – to make a big impact and lessen the information gap.

Is there an information gap preventing your customer from understanding what your business or non profit has to offer? What beautifully simple item could you TWIST with that would make your customer feel more at ease?

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Finding the right TWIST can help your brand innovate and deliver. In TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands, Brand School founder Julie Cottineau provides a clear road map to build a stronger more distinctive brand – complete with examples from real life small business owners who have successfully completed our Brand School program. Pick up your copy today.

You Are Your Twist – Quick Twist Video #7

 

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Julie Cottineau, BrandTwist and Brand School founder, author of TWIST and former VP of Brand at Virgin, explains how your personal brand gives people a reason to choose your business and why this is a critical asset for a small business or solo practitioner.

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TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands by Brand School founder Julie Cottineau.

“This book is a gift to small business owners, packed with information and strategies for potent branding, and full of obvious experience, wisdom and from-the-ground knowledge.” - Sarah Hinawi, executive director, Purpl Center for Learning and Social Innovation

New Twists on Playing With Your Pets

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There are many times when we have to leave our beloved pets home alone, bored and often anxious. We love our pets and want to take good care of them but day care boarding, pet walkers and sitters require advanced vetting, scheduling and are costly. What loving pet owners need is a TWIST that’s convenient and affordable to help monitor, interact with and entertain their pets while away from home. Welcome Petcube and PlayDate, two new pet care innovations that twist high-tech and mobile know-how into fun pet sitting solutions.

Petcube gives you the ability to monitor and interact with your pet from your mobile device using streaming video, a two-way audio stream and speaker, motion and sound detection, and a laser for added game-time fun. It also serves as a room monitor, providing an extra dose of home security. Even if you don’t own a pet, but are a pet lover – you can join the Petcube community. When you download the app you can interact and play with other’s pets or shelter pets.

With PlayDate you can actually play fetch with your pet by operating a rolling smart ball that you control from your mobile device. You can watch, record video and capture pictures of your pet interacting with the ball. There’s a microphone and speaker so you can hear one another, and a squeaker for added fun. Everything your dog or cat needs to be entertained and for you to feel reassured.

Pletcube’s and PlayDate’s developers took an old problem and looked at it from a new angle – They TWISTED high tech with warm and fuzzy to create solutions that every pet owner can use. How could you twist with a bit of readily available technology to solve a problem your customer’s facing?

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Finding the right TWIST can help your brand innovate and deliver. In TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands, Brand School founder Julie Cottineau provides a clear road map to build a stronger more distinctive brand – complete with examples from real life small business owners who have successfully completed our Brand School program. Pick up your copy today.

A Switch With a Twist

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Here’s a TWIST that is so handy and so simple you’ll wonder how you ever got along without it and why you didn’t invent it. Have you ever found yourself confused with which light switch is which? In your home? In someone else’s home? In your new home? At work? SwitchID solves this problem with unique visual TWIST.

The old fashioned way was often taking a marker and labeling switches, taping up little notes or putting up stickers to help remember or let guests know which is which switch. But they rub off, wear out or leave a sticky mess behind.

SwitchID is a simple, safe, and easy solution that shows you which switch is which with self-adhering badges that use universal iconography for instant recognition. They’re durable, easy to clean and even come in a glow-in-the-dark option for added safety. They’ll stay on your switch plate until you decide to remove them.

SwitchID was created by Matthias Bollmus and John Schlick both of whom started Napkin Innovations, L.L.C, a think tank for new consumer ideas. Their mission statement: “We are trying to capture the every-day problems and see if there is an opportunity to tackle those through innovative solutions.”

Bollmus and Schlick took action on a simple idea that could solve a pesky problem and TWISTED to find a better way. Just because an idea seems too simple to be good, doesn’t mean it isn’t.

What simple TWIST could make your customer’s life a little easier?

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Finding the right TWIST can help your brand innovate and deliver. In TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands, Brand School founder Julie Cottineau provides a clear road map to build a stronger more distinctive brand – complete with examples from real life small business owners who have successfully completed our Brand School program. Pick up your copy today.

Twist Personal and Business – Quick Twist Video #9

 

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Keeping it real makes you and your brand more relatable. Julie Cottineau, BrandTwist and Brand School founder, author of TWIST and former VP of Brand at Virgin, explains how TWISTING your personal and professional brands can make you unstoppable.

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TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands by Brand School founder Julie Cottineau.

“Julie’s rich experience as the vice president of brand for Virgin has been brought to life in TWIST – a wakeup call and a road map for building brands that break through and get noticed.” - Raul Leal, CEO Virgin Hotels

Delicious Twists for Mother’s Day

Celebrate Mom by giving her some delicious TWISTS that go beyond the typical manicure, chocolates and flowers. Here’s our picks for culinary gifts to show mom how much you appreciate her unique taste:

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Girolle Cheese Cutter - No need to go to France to experience a delightful cheese TWIST! Cheese is more fun and tastes even better when thinly sliced – literally with a twist – into delicate, paper-thin shaves. Mom will have fun with this attention-grabbing cheese cutter.

 

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Optic Twist Glass Set with Custom Holder - Pair your whimsical cheese shaves with wine served in this handsome set of wine glasses that come complete with their own TWISTS: a beautiful twisted glass design and a customizable box to add a little personal twist.

 

 

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Make Your Own Hot Sauce Kit - No kitchen should be without that special sauce… hot and spicy is the culinary wave now, and here’s a special TWIST: A kit giving all mom all she needs to make her own secret sauce! Mom can personalize the label and create her own brand twist!

 

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Recipe Art - When is a chalk board more than a chalk board? When it TWISTS to becomes a lovely, framed work of art customized with your favorite recipe! Immortalize mom’s kitchen talent… which favorite recipe of Mom’s would you choose?  Homemade soup… cookie… dip… spiked lemonade…

 

 

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Flowers in the Kitchen Cookbook - Flowers are a traditional Mother’s Day gift… they always make mom feel special.. but this flower TWIST will last for decades: a cookbook that gives all the info. about cooking with flowers, complete with gorgeous photos. Flowers add a beautiful, flavorful twist to make mom’s special dishes really stand out.

 

 

Twist angle whiteHelp mom cook up more for her business! Is your mother an aspiring entrepreneur, small business owner or artist? Help make her dreams come true! Give her a copy of TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands by Brand School founder Julie Cottineau.

Brand School is our highly effective, premier branding program that gives tools and insight to grow a stronger personal or business brand. Get more information about the next session and our Brand Health Check HERE.

 

Stop Spending Until You Twist – Quick Twist Video #8

 

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Don’t waste one more dime on marketing until you define your TWIST. Julie Cottineau, BrandTwist and Brand School founder, author of TWIST and former VP of Brand at Virgin, explains how a well-developed brand can save you thousands of dollars.

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TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands by Brand School founder Julie Cottineau.

“This bold book encourages entrepreneurs and brand owners across all types of businesses to think outside the limits of their category and take risks, and gives them the tools to make them stand out from their competitors.” - Laura Winston, attorney, Kim Winston LLP

 

Just Twist Now – Quick Twist Video #6

 

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Julie Cottineau, BrandTwist and Brand School founder, and author of TWIST, shares the important lessons she learned as the VP of Brand for Virgin and the value of Richard Branson’s “Let’s do it!” approach.

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TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands by Brand School founder Julie Cottineau.

“This book is a gift to small business owners, packed with information and strategies for potent branding, and full of obvious experience, wisdom and from-the-ground knowledge.” - Sarah Hinawi, executive director, Purpl Center for Learning and Social Innovation

Small Business Advocate Jim Blasingame Twists with Julie Cottineau

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Julie was interviewed by Jim Blasingame, The Small Business Advocate,  about branding for the small business owner, finding your unique TWIST to make your brand stand out, how telling your brand story is different for men and women, and her book, TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands.

Jim’s website is loaded with insight for the small business owner or entrepreneur. Jim hosts videos, podcasts, articles, interviews and more. Experts share their wisdom, discuss their challenges and give solutions. For more valuable tips and support please hop on over to SmallBusinessAdvocate.com.

Listen to Julie’s and Jim’s talk here:

Finding the right TWIST can help your brand stand out. In TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands, Brand School founder Julie Cottineau provides a clear road map to build a stronger more distinctive brand – complete with examples from real life small business owners who have successfully completed our Brand School program. Available at TheTwistBook.com

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Phonebooth With a Poetic Twist

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Telephone booths have become old school relics of the past, until Elizabeth Hellstern took one and added a poetic TWIST to create Telepoem, an experiential art piece that debuted in Flagstaff, Arizona.

The Telepoem booth offers the younger set a novel, “new” experience of dialing a rotary phone in phone booth, and it provides a comforting dose of quiet and nostalgia for the senior set. For both, it’s a respite from an increasingly higher tech world, free of selfie taking or texting – just a solitary space and listen – to poetry recited by the authors.

What started out as a one-off, is available for purchase or rental and the artist is seeking funding to create more.

Hellstern didn’t invent the phonebooth, rotary dial phone or poetry. She took inspiration from an array of seemingly unrelated interests and existing items to deliver a novel experience.

How can you enhance your customer’s enjoyment? Take a look at what you already have in your business and TWIST unrelated assets together to see what emerges.

April is National Poetry Month… Use poetry to build your brand by creating a brand Haiku (Here’s how). It’s just one of the may exercises we use in Brand School

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Finding the right TWIST can help your brand deliver. In TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands, Brand School founder Julie Cottineau provides a clear road map to build a stronger more distinctive brand – complete with examples from real life small business owners who have successfully completed our Brand School program.

Live Your Twist – Quick Twist Video #5

 

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Create fresh ideas for your business by TWISTING your brand with a successful out-of-category brand. Julie Cottineau, BrandTwist and Brand School founder, author of TWIST and former VP of Brand at Virgin shares her proven approach for creating inspired and actionable ideas.

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TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands by Brand School founder Julie Cottineau.

“This bold book encourages entrepreneurs and brand owners across all types of businesses to think outside the limits of their category and take risks, and gives them the tools to make them stand out from their competitors.” - Laura Winston, attorney, Kim Winston LLP

 

Jewelry with an Alarming TWIST

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Yasmine Mustafa followed her dream to take a solo, six-month trek across South America. Throughout her journey she heard story after story from women about their being attacked, feeling vulnerable, inhibited and afraid. When an attack took place in her own apartment building, her vision to empower women to “Live your life boldly and without fear” was born.

Take Tiffany & Co., TWIST it with ADT Security Systems and you get Athena, a wearable piece of tech jewelry designed to prevent assault by ROAR for Good.

Athena is a simple device that looks like a jewelry accessory. It’s about the size of a half-dollar, wearable as a necklace or clipped onto clothing or a handbag. It’s mission: to protect women with the touch of a button. When you press the button a loud alarm is sounded and text messages are sent to friends & family with your current GPS location. There is also a SilentROAR™ feature which sends text alerts without activating the alarm.

Dedicated to ending assault, ROAR For Good takes their mission a step further. For each device sold, a portion of proceeds is invested in educational programs that have been shown to increase empathy and reduce violence, and ten percent of proceeds from their crowdfunding campaign goes towards raising awareness about the warning signs of abuse and helping end relationship violence.

ROAR For Good’s CEO & Co-Founder Mustafa saw a need, and TWISTED to create a brand and a product line that delivers what women are truly seeking, empowerment and safety.

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Finding the right TWIST can help your brand take charge. In TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands, Brand School founder Julie Cottineau provides a clear road map to build a stronger more distinctive brand – complete with examples from real life small business owners who have successfully completed our Brand School program.

The Virgin Twist – Quick Twist Video #4

 

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How did Richard Branson create loyal brand fans for his Virgin Airlines? Imagine a disco with wings. Julie Cottineau, BrandTwist and Brand School founder, author of TWIST and former VP of Brand at Virgin, highlights the importance of lateral thinking.

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TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands by Brand School founder Julie Cottineau.

“Julie’s rich experience as the vice president of brand for Virgin has been brought to life in TWIST – a wakeup call and a road map for building brands that break through and get noticed.” - Raul Leal, CEO Virgin Hotels

Twist Your Business – Quick Twist Video #3

 

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Create fresh ideas for your business by TWISTING your brand with a successful out-of-category brand. Julie Cottineau, BrandTwist and Brand School founder, author of TWIST and former VP of Brand at Virgin shares her proven approach for creating inspired and actionable ideas.

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TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands by Brand School founder Julie Cottineau.

“This book is a gift to small business owners, packed with information and strategies for potent branding, and full of obvious experience, wisdom and from-the-ground knowledge.” - Sarah Hinawi, executive director, Purpl Center for Learning and Social Innovation

A Wine Tasting With a Matchmaking Twist

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“Wine… offers a greater range for enjoyment and appreciation than, possibly, any other purely sensory thing.” writes Ernest Hemingway;  but not all wines are created equal…

How do you know what type of wine you prefer, which winery will satisfy your particular taste, what new wine variety you might enjoy? With the multitudes of wines available from around the world and new labels popping up overnight, it’s impossible to taste every one. Liquor stores offer tastings, but they’re infrequent with a limited selection. There are wine-of-the-month clubs, but you either must know what you want to order ahead of time or be at the mercy of the club’s curation – which may not map to your taste preferences.

What if you took a Wine-Of-The-Month Club and TWISTED it with a match-making dating site like eHarmony? You’d get Tasting Room, the matchmaking answer to a wine lover’s or wine newbie’s dreams.

After signing up you receive a 6 mini-bottle tasting kit. You fill out and return a questionnaire rating the samples. This is the start of developing your unique Wine Profile. Your individual preferences guide the customized wine selections in the first case they deliver to you. With each case, you provide more feedback on your taste preferences and their corresponding wine selections become more honed.

Tasting Room saw a missing piece in the wine marketplace and innovated to offer consumers a fun and personalized way to approach and enjoy their product.

Take a look at the missing pieces that customers face in your market. Could your product or service offer the TWIST of a “sampler kit”? Don’t be afraid to ask your customers directly for their feedback or preferences. There are online free services like Survey Monkey that make surveys a snap. Involving your customers lets them know they are important to you and in turn, they’ll become loyal fans.

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Finding the right TWIST can help your brand reach more customers. In TWIST: How Fresh Perspectives Build Breakthrough Brands, Brand School founder Julie Cottineau provides a clear road map to build a stronger more distinctive brand – complete with examples from real life small business owners who have successfully completed our Brand School program.