Beauty On-The-Go with a TWIST

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Life is busier than ever. Planning ahead for a haircut, manicure, spa or gym reservation isn’t always possible and when you do find yourself with a spare minute not everyone takes last minute appointments. Many busy business people also find that out of town work travel allows for some down time, but when you are in an unfamiliar city – how do you find where to go for those services?

Take a Salon and TWIST it with UBER and you get Beautified, the new mobile app that makes it easy to find and book last-minute beauty and fitness appointments.

Beautified does for personal grooming what UBER does for taxi service – they address your need, simplify your search and bring it directly to your phone, in real time.

Serving their customers on both ends Beautified helps salons and gyms fill open spaces and helps patrons find the shops where and when they need them.

Beautified has just launched in New York City but plan to expand to other cities.

How can you make your business more accessible to busy customers? Try creating a mobile app to make shopping or booking appointments easier. Offer flexible hours or days or have a “live chat” for customer service and assistance available on your website.

When customers find it easy to connect with your brand, they’ll be more likely to become brand ambassadors and help spread the word about your business. At Brand School, our highly effective, premier branding program, we give you the tools you need to help your brand connect better with your ideal customer.

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Mirror, Miror with a Twist

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Retailers continue to innovate to deliver a more satisfying shopping experience with online shopping, mobile apps and free shipping and returns, but no one has been able to alleviate the isolation a shopper feels when alone in the dressing room, unable to really “see” how they look in a potential new outfit or get a friendly second opinion– until now.

What if you took a dressing room mirror and TWISTED it with Skype?

You’d have the Neiman Marcus cutting edge, interactive, 360 degree, social-sharing High Tech Memory Mirror.

Nieman Marcus looked at their customer’s unmet needs and how they like to communicate and developed this soon-to-be-released mirror that eliminates the lonely, cumbersome and doubt-filled shopper experience and transforms it into  social, supportive and enjoyable. Shoppers can literally “see” 360 degree, side-by-side video comparisons of themselves in different outfits and share the video right there in store, via an iPad. This is a great solution for special occasion shopping when friends and family are often geographically spread out.

Take the time to think about moments in your client’s buying process where you could help them feel more supported and less isolated… and you might have the spark of a game-changing innovation.

Brand School Master Class teaches you how to find and apply TWISTS that make it easier for customers to enjoy experiencing your business. Enrolling now – see if your brand qualifies HERE.

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“Brand School turned out to be like the Mastercard commercial, priceless.The one-on-one sessions really allowed me to go deep into what my practice was about and how to implement it” - Sandeep Manchanda, Giraffe Partners Program Management

Valentine’s Day Twists for all 5 Senses

Valentine’s Day is a day to show appreciation for those we love. Sharing your love by appealing directly to the 5 senses adds a new twist that is sure to please. Here are gift ideas with TWISTS to create the perfect, SENSUAL, Valentine’s Day.

 

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SIGHT

Take an old-school slide projector and twist it with a smartphone and you get The SmartPhone Projector. This retro-styled cardboard “projector” lets you project the images on your phone onto a wall. Put together your favorite selfies or couple shots and create a feast for your honey’s eyes!

 

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TASTE 

Are you and your special other complementary opposites? Well then indulge together in two opposite tastes – sweet and salty – twisted together into one crunchy treat that’s sure to satisfy: Sir Francis Bacon’s Bacon Chocolate Covered Peanut Brittle. 

 

 

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Studies show people are more willing to give you their phone numbers if you carry a musical instrument. People seem to be more attractive when music is playing. All reason enough to join forces and make music together – literally. Put a little DIY twist into the night’s music with this Make Your Own Ukulele Kit (pick up two and enjoy a duet!)

 

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Indulge in the plush feel of fur. Well, not everyone wants, or can afford, real fur, but you can enjoy this faux twist: Wrap yourselves in a cozy, sensuous and luxurious faux fur throw while you enjoy the warm glow from the fireplace and your favorite romantic movie on TV or create your own love scenes.

 

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Don’t underestimate the power of scent. We recognize our loved ones by their scent. Enhance the mood with fragrance & candlelight. This porcelain lantern is a fresh twist on a classic design. Fill it with a candle that twits together the tired-and-true scents that appeal to both men and women: vanilla and cinnamon.

 

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Show some love to the  entrepreneur in your life by giving them the tools to realize their dreams. Or show yourself some attention.  Brand School is our highly effective, branding program that gives tools and insight to engage all of your customer’s senses and grow a stronger brand. Enrolling now. See if your business qualifies for some brand love HERE.

 

Twisting Luxury and Mass Market Fashion Brands

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Today, the luxury fashion market is facing many challenges – as many business are. Mass brands are growing in reach and competing with Luxury brands, and Luxury brands are forming partnerships with Mass retailers to meet new audiences. This phenomenon of both trading-up and trading-down has increased in popularity over the past 15 years and has increased more than 40% annually in the last decade.

The co-branding strategy can:

  • Strengthen a brand
  • Differentiate a brand from the competition
  • Extend a brand into other segments through the partner brand.

However, one of the risks in co-branding is overexposure and brand dilution.

Luxury brand dilution occurs when there’s:

  •  An incorrect fit between co-branding partners
  •  Unbalanced prestige positioning in a mass market
  •  Overexposure
  •  Lack of successful co-branding management
  •  Unknown strategic purpose.

For example: at first Karl Lagerfeld and H&M seemed to be the perfect fit because they share similar values, but in the long-term the differences in management caused dilution of the Lagerfeld brand. While, Vera Wang and Kohl’s at first seemed an unlikely pair but ended up a good fit because they’re both interested in management and quality control throughout the collaboration.

Furthermore, Karl Lagerfeld limited his co-branding to H&M, therefore the brand received limited exposure. Vera Wang has been collaborating with both Kohl’s and Zales making the Vera Wang brand more accessible to more mass consumers.

It may seem like Lagerfeld missed out on receiving big gains from the co-branding collaboration especially with some brand dilution, but both Lagerfield and Wang ended up benefitting from the partnerships. The strategic aim of Karl Lagerfeld was to gain knowledge, consumers and awareness through collaborating with H&M, and after the collaboration, he made his own masstige collection for the mass market. Whereas, Vera Wang’s SimplyVera collaboration with Kohl’s was to increase her consumer segment and branch into the lifestyle market.

What lessons can your businesses learn from these collaborations?

As the world becomes more accessible, brands need to follow suit and become more accessible to reach broader audiences. Collaborations and partnerships are powerful tools to help spread brand awareness, but it’s important to have a firm understanding on what your desired benefit is – before you launch a partnership.

Having a solid brand vision is essential when designing the next step to grow loyal brand followers. Brand School gives you the tools you need to recognize the right market for your business and chart the right course for the future. See more about our next session and a Free Brand Health Check HERE.

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“Brand School is a must class for you! The exercises really help you to focus and re-focus on what branding your company is all about. You will get results you can use for the future,” - Brenda Dillion Cavette,  Fashionista Tea

About the Author:  

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Melanie Walt was born in Switzerland and has lived in many parts of the world. She recently finished her Master degree in Brands, Communication and Culture and has a Bachelor degree in Management with Marketing from the University of London. She is currently seeking job opportunities in the field of Marketing in Switzerland. Contact Melanie via: walt.melanie@bluewin.ch 

 

If you would like to be a BrandTwist guest blogger, please contact Jamie@brandtwist.com.

Sneezing on the Go with a Twist

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“Keep your eyes on the road and your hands on the wheel” – good advice for drivers, but when you’ve got kids in the back seat, sneezing, sniffling and spilling, that can be a challenge.

While rummaging to find a box of tissues for her young children, mother of three Amy Davis had a close call with a neighbor’s fence. Days later she found the tissue box scrunched on the floor behind the seat. With tissue box in one hand and an eye on the car cup holder, Amy had an “Ah ha!” moment. She realized that what she and thousands of others needed were to have tissues and wipes closer at hand.

Amy took a tissue box and TWISTED it with a travel mug to create the Kiss-u Tissue Tube.  Kiss-u Tissues and Wipes are designed to go in a car cup holder but can fit anywhere a water bottle can go. Eco-friendly, the cardboard tubes are the only reusable and re-fillable dispensers on the market; they have re-sealable tops, and you can customize the tubes with your own design. Kiss-u was a 2014 PPI Most Innovative Product of the Year Finalist.

……………

Amy created a successful new product delivery system by taking a personal problem and TWISTING for a unique solution.

Are you paying attention to your target’s un-met needs?

Brand School can help you dive into what keeps your target up at night and twisting these insights into innovative product and services. Find out now if your brand qualifies for our upcoming session.

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“Brand School really allowed me to go deep into what my practice was about and how to implement it” - Sandeep Manchanda, Giraffe Partners Program Management 

See Clearer With a Twist

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Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”

Today, technology is radically changing how we connect with the world. Everyone wants to be a part of it – “selfies”, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook – are all buzzing 24/7.  But one company is using technology to help others not just be seen – but actually see.

Non profit Be My Eyes took an iPhone and TWISTED it with social media to create a breakthrough app that helps solve some of the everyday needs of the blind.

Through a direct video call the app gives blind people the opportunity to ask a sighted volunteer for help dealing with tasks that require normal vision. With the smartphone’s video camera, the blind person films what they wish to know about and shares it with the sighted helper, who describes what is being shown in the video. By working together they are able to overcome the challenge that the blind person is facing. It can be anything from needing to know the expiration date on a milk carton to getting input on choosing which photo to send to a friend.

……………..….

“It’s my hope that by helping each other as an online community, Be My Eyes will make a big difference in the everyday lives of blind people all over the world” – Hans Jørgen Wiberg, Founder of Be My Eyes

What would make life better for your customers and what can you TWIST with to find innovative ways to deliver it to them?

Brand School Master Class teaches you how to find and apply TWISTS that make it easier for customers to enjoy experiencing your business. Enrolling now – see if your brand qualifies HERE.

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“Working with Brand School is an invaluable experience and a really great use of resources because it opens up so many doors and affects so many areas of  your business.” - Sarah Hinawi, Executive Director, The Purple Crayon Center for Learning and Innovation

Entrepreneurial Mastermind with an Adventurous Twist

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“Screw it, just do it!” Richard Branson’s motto has really delivered for him, for the Virgin brand and for countless entrepreneurs inspired by Branson’s success. When you open yourself up to new experiences you gain more confidence and discover new ways to approach old problems.

There’s a lot to gain by getting out of your comfort zone and trying new things. Conferences, classes and meet-ups are a good way for small business owners and entrepreneurs to connect and re-ignite their creative business thinking… but why not kick it up a notch?

Workaway, the first travel agency dedicated to entrepreneurs, takes a mastermind group of entrepreneurs and TWISTS it with a remote travel adventure.

Their premise is to “Get great, like-minded people to spend time together in fantastic surroundings. The goal is to move our businesses to the next level, get new knowledge and relations for life.”

Enrollees can choose from two experiences: a “Camp” where 20 participants stay in a remotely located house for a week; or the “Adventures” trip, which recently has taken enrollees to Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania.

Next time you’re feeling stuck – “Screw it; just do it!” Get together with other entrepreneurial adventurers and get away for some inspiration.

Where would you like to go to shake things up?

Brand School gives you a membership in a community where like-minded entrepreneurs, small business owners and non-profits come together to support one another and spur on innovation. Learn more about the benefits of Brand School and how our team of experts can help boost your business with our free Brand Health Check HERE.

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“Brand School helped me get the business’ name, brand promise and message clear… thank you… And thanks also for the networking opportunities which have led to big support in my emerging business.” - Nell Panero, Education Consultant

A Cool Drink with a Warm Twist

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Identify a problem; TWIST up an innovative solution. Any tailgating fan has faced the dilemma of needing to keep their hands warm while holding on to their favorite beverage – and keeping it cold at the same time.

SUZY KUZY has come up with a simple solution to that pesky problem by TWISTING two ideas together: an insulating drink jacket + a cozy warm mitten = Knit Beer Mitts. And according to the dozens of testimonials on their site, people love them.

“Super awesome! Hands warm, beer cold.”

Sometimes the most obvious solution is right in front of us, but the trick is to go beyond the idea stage to actual implementation. Don’t just say “someone should find a way to make a better mousetrap” – build the trap and become the big cheese.

What idea have you been kicking around that needs to get out of your head and into the market?

In Brand School we show you to tap into market gaps and apply creative TWISTS to deliver tangible solutions. To find out what Brand School can do for you and receive a free Brand Health Check, click here.

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“Brand School showed me what fun it is to actually work on my business.” - Jean Carucci, Carucci Consultants

Last Minute Gifts that Twist

There’s nothing better than giving a gift that’s really loved and gets remembered. Stand out among the heaps of gift cards, certificates, and traditional (but boring) sweaters by surprising your friends and family with a unique gift that TWISTS:

 

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60-Hour Candle – This candle literally twists! It twists around the stand and is a unique take on lanterns of long ago. It burns up to 60 hours, ensuring your gift will long be shining bright!

 

 

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Clocky Alarm Clock – No more hitting the “snooze” button with this clock. Clocky twists where no clock has twisted before – when the alarm sounds, it literally runs away from you! Helping the receiver get up and at ‘em and seize the day.

 

 

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EOS  - Evolution of Smooth – Lotions – These organic, natural and paraben-free lip balm, lotions, shave cream and limited edition and charity collections are a joy not only to use but just to look at. The products come in unique shapes and colors – and we love how the Lip Balm opens with a twist!

 

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Lokai Bracelet – A twist from the highest mountain and deepest sea. The Lokai bracelet’s white bead has water from Mount Everest; the black bead holds mud from the Dead Sea, symbolizing that when you hit a low it’s important to stay hopeful and when you’re on top that you stay humble. 10% of net profits go to charity.

 

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Lonely Planet’s 1000 Ultimate Experiences Book - The ultimate chair-side travel experience. This book gives you 1,000 ultimate experiences without leaving your house… and if you do want to actively travel, you won’t want to leave home before checking out the book for some amazing travel twists.

 

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The Brand-growing Gift – Give the gift that helps the entrepreneur, business owner or artist, in your life grow their business. Help them twist their brand to the top! Brand School is the premier branding program with highly effective tips, tools and insight to grow a stronger personal or business brand. Get more information about our upcoming session and a free Brand Health Check (worth $500) HERE.

An Inspiring Entrepreneurial Twist that Warmed Our Hearts

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We are always looking for the twist – that little something special that opens our minds to new ways solving old problems. This entrepreneurial twist is one of the most inspiring we’ve seen.

Insight + invention + inspiration = Veronika Scott and The Empowerment Plan.

Having experienced homelessness, college student Veronika wanted to create something that would help serve that community as part of a design class assignment. She created a coat that converts to a sleeping bag – a truly innovative concept.

During the prototype testing, a woman yelled at her, berating her for this “band aid” solution, when what homeless people really need are jobs. That’s when Veronika decided to start her own production company and employ the very population she really wanted to reach. At The Empowerment Plan, workers are taught the skills they need to empower their lives while creating products that help others.

……….

Insight came from her personal experience; invention came from her college design class assignment; and inspiration came from listening to the perspective of her target. Well done, Veronika!

What can your small business do by combining insight + invention + inspiration?

In Brand School, students go beyond category boundaries, take lessons from successful brands and twist them with their own business to innovate and serve the consumer who really needs a new choice. See what Brand School can do for you.

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“Brand School was helped us set structure to our process, define our target and recognize our customer’s motivations. We were able to create timely taglines and better-defined branding campaigns.” - Randi Curhan, Development Coordinator for Redwood High School Foundation, Non-profit

Baby Bottles, Bluetooth and Busy Parents

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We are living in a “hands free” world. With the invention of Bluetooth technology we are able to operate just about everything without having to hold onto it. But a busy mom or dad will tell you that you need to have one, if not both, hands on board to feed a bottle to an infant – and there are many times when that’s difficult to manage. What parents need is an innovation in bottle-feeding that will make their lives easier. So what if you took a typical baby bottle and TWISTED it with a Bluetooth hands-free device? Enter Podee®, the original hands-free bottle-feeding system. This can be used in strollers, car seats or anywhere parents need an extra hand for feeding baby.

This is a good example of how knowing your customer can lead to innovations to make their lives easier. Podee understood what a busy parent really needed and they innovated to create a revolutionary, stand-alone bottle feeder and line of accessories that benefit both of their ideal customers – parents and baby.

Brand School Master Class gives you the tools you need to zero-in on your ideal customer and create the next brand TWIST that will take your business further. Enrolling now HERE.

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“Brand School was helped us set structure to our process, define our target and recognize our customer’s motivations. We were able to create timely taglines and better define our branding campaigns.” - Randi Curhan, Development Coordinator for Redwood High School Foundation, Non-profit

Entrepreneur Conversations

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We love it when we find enriching resources for entrepreneurs and business owners, and we love sharing them with you. If you have not come across Entrepreneur Conversations radio show with Christine Monaghan, allow us to introduce you. This podcast series is designed to spark, inspire and motivate your inner strength to cultivate a thriving business model by bringing you the wisdom, stories and experience of successful entrepreneurs.

Here is an inspiring conversation with Christine and BrandTwist Founder & CEO and Founder of Brand School, Julie Cottineau on business and branding creativity, challenges faced by entrepreneurs – and their solutions.

Listen to the interview below – and then head on over to Entrepreneur Conversations Radio Show site and get inspired with Christine and other successful entrepreneurs and business owners.

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“Brand School helped me get the business’ name, brand promise and message clear. I think it speaks perfectly to my target audience, thank you… And thanks also for the networking opportunities which have led to big support in my emerging business.” - Nell Panero, Education Consultant

 

Innovative Connecting at 35,000 Feet

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Since commercial airlines became popular in the 50’s nothing much has changed. Unless you are on a luxury jet, most of us sit like anonymous sardines. We believe the airline industry is ripe for innovation and we often tell the true story of how we created the innovation TWISTING technique through a mix up with a McDonald’s mirage at Newark airport a few years ago.

When we do this TWISTING exercise in workshops and Brand School we often ask participants to imagine what would happen if a traditional airline like Delta would twist with an iconic brand like Starbucks – how would the airline experience become more innovative? Most respondents say that it would be great if we could have more convivial seating and make more meaningful connections on airlines, like we do at Starbucks. After all, Starbucks is not about coffee, it’s really about community.

We’re wondering if maybe the folks from Delta have been reading our BrandTwist blog or sneaking into the workshops, because they recently launched “Innovation Class” - a mentoring program at 35,000 feet that allows people to travel with innovators and use the flight time for valuable business connections.

Looking outside of your category for inspiration is one of the best ways to create fresh ideas and stand out in your market.

What iconic brand can your business TWIST with to reach new heights?

Brand School Master Class inspires innovative thinking to implement TWISTS like these that can broaden your business’ reach. Enrolling now – see if your brand qualifies HERE.

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“Brand School turned out to be like the Mastercard commercial, priceless.The one-on-one sessions really allowed me to go deep into what my practice was about and how to implement it” - Sandeep Manchanda, Giraffe Partners Program Management

Engage Your Target With a Gaming Twist

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Game-playing is here to stay, ask any millennial. Games are engaging and can help get your brand message across while entertaining your target.  Gabe Zichermann, author The Gamification Revolution writes in his blog about his experience at a doctor’s visit where he was asked to take a lung capacity breath test. This test, which requires some effort and used to be rather boring, is now conducted using a video game interface that energizes an otherwise tedious experience. It’s as if the American Lung Association was TWISTING with XBox.

…..……..…

Games make your service or product accessible, inviting and friendly – and they don’t need to be complicated or technically intricate. There are app-building courses and programs like MIT App Inventor that can help you create a simple game.

How can your small business or non-profit use gamification to energize your brand and engage your customers?

Brand School Master Class inspires your creative thinking to implement TWISTS like these that can make it easier for customers to enjoy experiencing your business or product and spread the word about your brand. Enrolling now – see if your brand qualifies HERE.

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“I got so much out of Brand School. My business has grown leaps and bounds, and I feel like I have much more solid branding and language around what I do. So, thank you!!” - Nathalie Lussier, natalielessier.com

Viora: Twisting the Coffee Mug for a Better Sipping Experience

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If you thought there wasn’t any more room in the coffee industry for another innovation, think again. Meet Viora. Viora was developed when the founders expressed their personal dissatisfaction with the current coffee to-go experience and decided to do something about it. What was missing? The convenience of coffee on-the-run in a portable cup was lacking the tangible and sensuous experience of sipping from a ceramic mug.  So they decided to solve this problem. The result? A TWIST on the blah, sensory-deprived, to-go paper cup lid to make it more like of an indulgent, sensuous experience like the Red Door Spa by Elizabeth Arden.  According to the product’s website: “the Viora Lid drinks like a cup, unlocks flavor, and eliminates annoying splashes”.

Personal dissatisfaction breeds innovation. Notice your own frustrations and inspirations, and think, “How could I incorporate these lessons into my brand’s experience?” And remember – there’s always room for a better, brighter and more efficient – everything.

Brand School, our highly effective, premier branding program, will provide you the tools to create fresh ideas and help you see ways your brand may be able to address an unmet need to make it easier for consumers to say “yes” to giving you a try.  See if your business qualifies for our next semester HERE.

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“I learned a lot from Brand School.  It inspired me to think outside the box. I have a much deeper understanding of how to effectively build a brand.” - Mike Sass, Entrepreneur

Twist Up Your Space – Wake Up Your Brand

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Many entrepreneurs tell us it’s a challenge to stay motivated. When you work day-in and day-out on the same business in the same category it’s hard to keep the fresh ideas flowing. How do you rejuvenate your self and your creativity to stay in the zone?

SHAKE UP YOUR SPACE.

Most of the time we’re on auto-pilot, always stopping at the same coffee shop, the same take-out place, even taking the same exact route to and from work each day. This kind of familiarity can be comforting – but it can also be the enemy of creativity. Shaking things up can give you big-time business breakthroughs. Seek out new environments – even if it only means changing the layout of your office. Move your desk to another corner of the room; face the window instead of the door or vice versa. For even better results – get inspired by Kiva. This microfinance organization gives employees “No-Meeting Tuesdays.” Workers have the option to work from somewhere else or from home. You can do the same – get out of your office all together and spend a few hours every week working from somewhere new, like a coffee shop, shared work space, local library, or even your own backyard.

WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE TWISTS TO STAY MOTIVATED AND INSPIRED?

Brand School is a unique brand-learning program that teaches best practices of successful large and small brands and shows you how to leverage lateral thinking and apply those practices to freshen up your business or personal brand. See if your brand qualifies for our next session HERE.

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“Motivational! I’ve given recommendations to several clients about Brand School.” - Liz Osting, Founder Herucliz Design

A Tiffany’s Twist With FARE Halloween Pumpkins

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Nonprofits and small businesses have big challenges getting brand attention. An innovative TWIST can go a long way toward getting your brand recognized and embraced.

Take a look at this clever TWIST from nonprofit FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education nonprofit). Halloween is a particularly dangerous holiday for children with food allergies, so FARE found a clever way to get attention. Instead of simply broadcasting an awareness campaign, they added this TWIST: They used an iconic color to break through. They also drove engagement by inviting user participation.

Families wishing to be identified as “food allergy friendly” were invited to place a teal pumpkin on their doorstep or a computer print out on their window to identify their house as one that  hands out  out allergy-safe treats like toys, puzzles, games, or books,

They made it easy for kids to get involved by offering free downloads of promotional materials like pumpkin templates.

While the teal pumpkin idea was not specifically influenced by Tiffany’s (Teal has always been the identified color of food allergy awareness) We love the inspirational TWIST that a teal pumpkin is like a Tiffany’s box, which means that when you see it, you immediately know something special awaits.

What can your small business or non-profit TWIST with to create more impact and more engagement?

At Brand School, the premier brand-learning program for small businesses, nonprofits and entrepreneurs, we don’t simply teach you the brand facts; we invite you to become an active participant. You have access to an exclusive group of like-minded business owners who support and encourage one another. Find out how your business can benefit from Brand School HERE.

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“Brand School’s guidance and support has helped grow my business to new depths of expansion, creativity and financial worth… and keep it growing and transforming to passionately share what I love with others.” - Deborah Coulter, deborahcoulterartflow.com

Hit the Mic with Stacey Harris and Julie Cottineau

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We are excited to bring you this series of podcasts from Social Media Expert and Brand School Social Media Faculty Advisor Stacey Harris. This is a free series of talks with BrandTwist Founder & CEO Julie Cottineau about how to make your brand really stand out. They discuss ways to make branding decisions easier and how to take what the big brands do and apply their twists to your brand to build stronger, more profitable businesses – even in a crowded marketplace.

Stacey is a Brand School graduate and we are really excited to now have her as a member of the Brand School Facutly. Stacey’s site, TheStaceyHarris.com, is full of social media marketing insight, podcasts featuring chats with business experts, and courses to help you get more bang from your social media effort.

SO GET READY for tons of branding, marketing and business innovation takeaways – listen to the podcasts here:

Brands That Stand Out with Julie Cottineau – Episode 101 

Better Branding with Julie Cottineau – Episode 27 

TAP INTO THE KNOWLEDGE

Connecting with other business owners or entrepreneurs is an effective way to keep your business ideas fresh. In Brand School Master Class you connect with an exclusive community of like-minded business owners and entrepreneurs that support one another and share inspirations to stay on track and bring fresh ideas to market. We’re enrolling now. See if your brand qualifies.

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“Working with Julie is an invaluable experience and a really great use of resources because it opens up so many doors and affects so many areas of  your business.” - Sarah Hinawi, Executive Director, The Purple Crayon Center for Learning and Innovation

Duck, Duck, Twist?

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You’re not the only one – there are plenty of ducks in the pond – and they’re all cute. So how do you stand out? Duck, duck, TWIST! Here are three top twists that you can implement right now that will help you create a more memorable brand:

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF TOUCHPOINTS:

Chipotle’s packaging on their cups and bags contains “passionate ramblings” such as, “I think we could be really good together” paired with a picture of a burrito. This is an engaging TWIST which separates them from the fast food pack. Break out in your category by taking advantage of overlooked moments and materials to send on-brand messages. Packing slips, invoices and receipts, outside AND inside shopping bags and packages make great places for an inspirational and unique note of thanks.

CURATE AN EASIER WAY TO SAMPLE YOUR BUSINESS

Draw inspiration from Birchbox who created an entire company around making it easier for shoppers to try out new products. Make it easier for customers to sample and appreciate your products or services. Include a little SWAG like a sticker, pen, trial size or discount coupon with orders. A price bundle that includes an “entry level” or trial period can make a potential consumer feel more at ease trying your services out.

PLAY UP YOUR LOCATION:

These two successful hotels mastered the power of location to stand out among big chain competitors. Don’t be afraid to be local. Celebrating where you come from can help you get noticed – and help people identify with what you are offering. Have local maps available online and in-house and offer post cards that show your location. Connect with local tourism departments and travel agencies. Partner with neighboring businesses and offer to swap discount coupons or affiliate referral offers.

REMEMBER:

There is no touch point too small, no free sample that isn’t appreciated and no local watering hole that isn’t a gathering place for those in the know… just add your brand’s unique TWIST to fly above the flock.

What are some TWISTS you could use to increase your brand’s reach?

Brand School Master Class – Enrolling now. See if your brand qualifies.

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“I’ve been able to take a look at the professionalism I offer and have been able to raise my prices to a level of which I didn’t have before.” - Ned Towle, Founderer Westchester Wine School

Twisting With Your Ex

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What do you get when you take an online dating site and TWIST it with Mercedes Benz Certified Pre-Owned vehicles?  People who would love to shout out to the world that they know a classy, quality ex partner, brother, sister, cousin or best friend who would make a perfect match for… someone else.

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There are so many dating sites out there, it can be a challenge to to find a twist that makes your business stand out, but take a look at what greatexboyfriends.com is doing: they put a TWIST on the age-old problem of finding the perfect match. They took the tried-and-true, traditional process of match-making (being set up by an family member or friend) and brought it into the tech & social media-savvy present century. Users are able to learn what makes a potential match so exquisite and why they would be a perfect catch directly from people who really know best: relatives, ex lovers, friends and roommates. Clients get to see prospects through another’s eyes. Simply by inviting users – and their circle of friends and family – to share their intimate perspectives, greatexboyfriends.com opened a whole new dimension in an overly-saturated market.

How could you apply a TWIST like this in your business and leverage knowledgeable influencers to invite your customers to take a test drive and fall in love with your brand?

Brand School Master Class – Enrolling now. See if your brand qualifies.

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 “I learned a lot from Brand School.  It inspired me to think outside the box. I have a much deeper understanding of how to effectively build a brand.” - Mike Sass, Entrepreneur