Branding Strategy And Marketing Success With Gerry Foster

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FTC Gerry | Branding Strategy

 

Building a brand for yourself and your business is a path that leads to success. What brand strategy can help you bring out the full potential of your business? In this episode, Mitch Russo looks at brands and how they drive success with Gerry Foster. As an experienced brand strategist, Gerry teaches us the tricks of the trade to build your brand identity and create a brand strategy. Tune in for more great insights from this top entrepreneur as you blaze your way to success.

Listen to the podcast here


 

Branding Strategy And Marketing Success With Gerry Foster

I have something special for all my coaches in the audience. As a coach myself, I realized that I had been spending about 30 minutes per session on admin because I had five applications open all at the same time. One for note, taking calendar, spreadsheet, browser, Zoom, past session history, scattered over two huge screens.

At the end of the recession, I had to combine all of that into a single email to send to my client but here is the best part. I was wasting 30 minutes doing it between sessions I decided to go find some coaching software to help me. It turns out I could not find anything that was easy to use, inexpensive and simple to learn. I decided to do what all great entrepreneurs should do. When you find a problem that has not been solved, what do you do? You solve it and that is what I did.

Several months ago, I launched ClientFol.io and it has been updated every month since. I want you to give it a try for $1. Go to ClientFol.io and give it a chance, a run, and a trial. Tell us what you think. I know you are going to love it. Now onto my guest and his incredible story. Living in Detroit during the Motown years, he realized that his life would progress more quickly in Los Angeles. He enrolled at USC to study Marketing and Branding, where he received several honors degrees for his incredible work and then he went to work in Corporate America.

Sometimes, we call that the corporate graveyard but in his case, it became the place where he evolved his abilities and talents to the next level. One day, the realization came that he could make a bigger splash in this world with his own company. With the fantasy of leaving a corporate job and going right into business and becoming wealthy, he fell flat on his face.

He struggled hard trying to make it work like you and I did but it took years of hard work to finally happen. After years of toiling, he started to get recognized as this amazing out-of-the-box branding guy and his work is worldwide for major brands. He is here with us now to teach us how we can do a better job branding ourselves, products, companies, and services. Welcome, Gerry Foster, to the show.

I am so excited about being here. Thank you for having me.

We deliver incredible value to this audience, Gerry and you are part of that. I’m glad you are here as well but let’s go back to the beginning. I started to tell a little bit about your story but I would like to hear more, take us back to the beginning.

If you've got something to put out into the world, especially if you offer any kind of expertise, service, skill, talent, or ability, you have to understand that a brand is an experience. Click To Tweet

When I was growing up in Detroit, Michigan, back in the proud days of Motown music, the auto industry was booming and Detroit at the time was the fifth-largest city in the country, I was fascinated by the Motown sound and this thing called a brand. Now I had no idea what a brand was but what captivated me was how someone could start a small business called Motown Records and create music that changed America. That lit the fuse within me, which is what is this whole thing called branding? Long story short, I went on to college at USC. I majored in Marketing, a deep study in Branding and everything took off from there.

What is interesting is that you brought up one of my favorite types of music and my favorite topics, which is the origin of a new trend. In my book Power Tribes, we talk about building tribes, powerful tribes, based on a vision of an individual who has created a manifesto that they would like to share with the world. Part of that manifesto is to repel those who do not qualify or resonate with that message and to attract those who do, and the ones they attract become ardent supporters and avid fans. To me, that is what Motown was about.

One person decided it was time to take this music that nobody was paying attention to and all of a sudden bring it to the world. There was a business opportunity and they could have failed. They were intent and had such a vision of what this could be. It almost could not fail. Gerry that is what infected you back in those days. That is what inspired you to see the fact that a brand can have incredible power.

When I think back on those days in high school, junior high, and everywhere else, I know the music was special. All of us who were there at that time knew that it was magical, that it was something about that sound. However, we had no idea that the music would have the impact that it has had. To this day, people still listen to that music with our artists, such as Michael Jackson, Smokey Robinson, Marvin Gaye, The Temptations, Stevie Wonder, and Lionel Richie.

We think about how that music was created in such a way that it brought joy to people. When I think about the Motown brand, I think about how that sound with something that enlivened your senses, electrified your nights and put a big old smile on your face. That is what branding is about. If you have got something to put out into the world especially if you offer any expertise, service, skill, talent, or ability, you have to understand that a brand is an experience. That is where a lot of people fall short, Mitch, which is they are putting out services but they are not putting out an experience.

A lot of my work focuses on showing people, particularly thought leaders, coaches, trainers, consultants, as we call them experts, authorities in their field, how to craft something that will amplify their uniqueness and magnify their impact out in the world because of the influence of their expertise. That is the work that I do.

I see the work that you do and I appreciate it but I think it is time now for you to take all of your expertise and pour it into the next 20 or 30 minutes and share it with us. I take a lifetime of experience and condense it down. Let’s start with what is branding and how does someone go about finding their brand voice?

FTC Gerry | Branding Strategy
Branding Strategy: The first thing people have to do is get clear on what impact they want to have out in the marketplace.

 

It starts internally. I want to focus on service-based entrepreneurs more than the product because product branding is a whole separate conversation. Let’s speak to the coaches and the experts that are out there reading. You first have to ask yourself, “Why are you doing the work that you are doing? What is it that is significant about your work, that thing that you have immersed your light into that is designed to benefit other people?” We can look at that in different ways. There is the spiritual aspect of that in terms of what is your calling? What is your divine assignment? Why do you exist? All of that. In the purest sense, the first thing that people have to do is get clear on what impact do you want to have out in the marketplace?

I have a question. The impact I want to have may be different than the impact I’m capable of creating. How do I deal with that disparity?

You have to first step into your greatness. You have to affirm within yourself that you have something of tremendous value that can bless, benefit and add value to the lives of the people you are serving. That is a great question, Mitch because that is a mindset. You have to see yourself as being here for a reason. A lot of people are not in touch with who they are.

They may know what they do in terms of skills, what they learned in college and all of that but that does not tell people who you are. When you have a brand, you are declaring the impact of your work as it connects with your voice in terms of saying, “This is what is in it for you as a result of my brand. This is what you are going to get and gain.”

Being the engineer, part of me listened to what you said and what it sounded like is that you are finding resonance between my heart, my soul, and my services. In the world of science, that synchronicity and resonance is a natural form of amplification. As you bring two frequencies into resonance, the output power doubles and triples rapidly. It sounds like you are in the business of aligning people’s hearts and minds to their services and products. Does that make any sense at all?

I used the word amplify. I said, “My work is about people amplifying their uniqueness and magnifying their impact.” If you hang out with that for a second, you have to connect. Whatever your gift, expertise is, skill, talent, ability, whatever word you want to use, I do not want to get booboo here but you have to connect it with a higher calling or purpose that is not about you but rather the footprint that you wish to make out in the world.

That requires people to make it a point to discover their purpose because if you are in touch with exactly why you exist and why you are here without being hung up on, “I went to college. I have an education. I have certifications, training, and degrees, lots of letters after my name.” That allows you to do what you do but if you want to put out a brand, you now have to shape that in such a way that it is a declaration of why you are here. In my case, my life’s work is about showing service-based entrepreneurs how to create an exceptional brand that makes an exceptional difference. They can live an exceptional life.

Step into your greatness. Affirm within yourself that you have something of tremendous value that can bless, benefit, and add value to the lives of the people you're serving. Click To Tweet

Let’s show the audience exactly how you do it. Where do you want to start? Do you want to start with me? Do you want to start with an example of a task?” Pick anyone you like. I do not mind but I want a demonstration of your brilliance.

I always tell people, “Look out in the marketplace and ask yourself what is missing for the clients that you are targeting? What are they looking for from someone like yourself that they presently cannot find?” You can say to them, “I know you have been looking for A, B, and C. You have been selling D, E, and F. I got the A, B, and C you have been looking for.” Mitch, on top of that, you then want to be able to say, “Do you want to know what else? You can only get it from me.”

This speaks to the starting point. Once you are clear on your brand purpose, now we are into, “Where are you going to plant your flag? Where are you going to stake your claim? What is it that you want to be known for that is associated with your brand name, which is your personal brand or as a service brand that is unique, fresh, and original that the world has not heard or seen before?” That is what people get excited about. I love to use celebrity brands or some of the well-known folks that are out there. Let us take Tony Robbins because he is huge in this space of coaching.

Tony Robbins is not in the business of marketing, selling, life coaching, and motivational speaking. He declared several years ago that he was in the business of life on your own terms for the people he serves. That is called your big brand idea. He has never deviated from his commitment to allowing his clients and students to live life on their own terms. He built his empire, targeting women, primarily saying, “Ladies lead your fulfilled life.” John Maxwell lives out leadership. For a lot of folks, they do not look at what is missing, where the gap is, and what people are looking for. That is the juice of it all and that is hard to do on your own.

When you said those words, a person came to mind. I lived in Dallas, Texas, after I sold TimeSlips Corporation to Sage from 1994 to 1998. During that time, we had a lot of pink Cadillacs in my neighborhood. Here is what Mary Kay spent millions of dollars saying on the radio every single day, hundreds of times a day, “Ladies, there is no such thing as an ugly woman, just a lazy one.” That was the most unique and powerful positioning statement I had ever heard about a product before.

That reminds me of a quote from Max Factor. Ladies who are reading, this is not a sexist comment but it speaks to what Mitch said. He said, “We make perfume in the factory but we sell hope to women.” What he was speaking about was the experience that a woman could have if she adorned herself with his makeup. That gets to the whole experience.

This is about the heart of branding, which is what makes you different? What is it about you that you can offer that is going to make you as appealing, fresh, and special as possible? The starting point is looking out and asking yourself not only what is missing but also what do people perhaps complain about regarding what you have? What are they sick of time to put it up with? What would they like to change? What would they like to have worked better?

FTC Gerry | Branding Strategy
Branding Strategy: Great brands are built strategically, not just visually.

 

You can now create that branding opportunity for yourself because the choice is you are either me only, me too or me also. If you are me too or me also, you are another penguin in the flock. You are another slice in the loaf. The most successful entrepreneurs understand and embrace the art of differentiation. They understand that this whole conversation of uncovering your voice is about having a distinct identity. If someone comes across your platform on the internet, for example, your website, your social media platform, whatever they feel, “This person has what I’m looking for. I cannot seem to find it anywhere else.”

There is a distinction that I thought I heard because there is the before and after, there is the who I am but I do not know how to brand that, what am I looking for and how do I brand that even though I’m not that? What I’m saying is I’m reading this blog post. If I’m someone tuning in and saying, “I do a great job. I have all this good stuff. I have a unique way of doing what I do. I do not know how to say those words.” That is your skill, abilities, and branding process.

There is somebody else who might hear this and say, “I learn a great way to state this problem but I do not have the solution. In other words, I can find the brand that would resonate with this problem in this audience but I do not have the product or service to fulfill it.” Would you say that branding is a first step or an afterthought?

If a person wants to put out a brand as opposed to a service, the brand is the first step. As you know, Mitch, I am a brand strategist and not a brand designer. I’m like someone who may own a house cleaning service. I do not do windows. I tell people I do not do logos, swag bags, tote bags, and websites, things that people can see because great brands are built strategically, not visually. The first step is to lay down a solid foundation, a layered foundation where you are bringing together all the key components that make up a world-class brand so that you can say the right things and the right way to the right people at the right time.

Once you figure out what your message is, who your audience is, what makes you different and special and all this stuff we have been talking about, you go to the next step, which is you feed that into your marketing machinery. You build it out creatively in terms of developing your website, your social media campaign, or marketing funnels. You are also going to determine how are you going to monetize your brand? Should you create courses and programs on all of them?

One of the biggest problems today for many thought leaders, coaches, speakers, and trainers is that they put the tile down before the cabinets are up. They do not have the foundation in place. They are busy trying to get clients. They fail to recognize. You have to make sure that you have the strongest brand possible, which means you have the strongest body, a voice in spirit possible and you bring that to life through your marketing.

What I do, Mitch, I’m the guy who makes folks eat their vegetables. People like to say I do the hard stuff because the core work is the foundational piece. That is where great brands are born. One woman once said to me, “Gerry, I get what you do. You do all the upfront thinking. You let other people do the decorating.” I go, “You got it.”

When you have a brand, you are declaring the impact of your work as it connects with your voice. Click To Tweet

We are going to get into some of that strategy in a moment. If you are enjoying this conversation that Gerry and I are having together, I want you to go to YourFirstThousandClients.com and look for Gerry Foster’s show page. On that page will be a link to a special free gift that you can take advantage of after you enjoy this interview. Gerry’s strategy means that you have thought through the stages in which a brand evolves. Teach us a little bit about how brands evolve and what we should be on the lookout for as we are creating brands or thinking through the process of using branding to either launch a product, service, or company?

I always tell people to adhere to what I call the golden triangle. If someone were to draw a triangle on a sheet of paper, they could write the word brand at the top, lower left-hand corner, the word market lower right-hand corner, the words sell. What that means is there is a sequence for scaling a business. When I use the word scaling, it is whatever that word means to someone. It may mean that they want to reach more people, impact more people, or maybe they want to want to make a certain amount of money or they want to attract a certain caliber of client, whatever scaling means to someone.

The sequences brand markets itself. You first nail down your brand, market and sell the heck out of your brand. It is always branding followed by marketing, followed by selling. They are like a three-legged stool. All three legs have to be in place. If one leg is missing, one leg is wobbly and one leg is shorter than the other, you got a bad situation here.

What that says is that branding is not more important than marketing and marketing is not more important than selling. Selling is not more important than brand new. They are equally important but the three have to mesh. They have to be integrated properly. You can scale and have the impact that you want to have. The job of branding is to get you known. The job of marketing is to get you found and desired. The job of selling is to get you paid. You’ve got to get known, get found and get paid because we are all in business to be seen, be heard and make money.

If someone does not understand that sequence and thinks, “I need to work on marketing because marketing is the holy grail.” Hold on a second. In order for your marketing to do what you need to do, you want to make sure that your marketing requires what is called the fewest impressions necessary. You do not need as many emails, postings, or whatever because if you root it in a strong, highly differentiated brand, all of a sudden, $1 works like $5.

You get a higher return on your marketing investment. You get more leads, more conversions, make more money, have more impact and you are happier. People have to make the decision. Do you want to put out a brand to put out a service? We live in a brand-conscious world. People prefer to do business with a brand. The choice, Mitch is, do you want to put out a brand or be bland? The one thing that I have come to believe is that people want to do business with people, not necessarily a brand. If you use a person as the brand, as the spokesperson, as the person who holds the mission, the service, or the product that is their brand, would you agree with that?

The thing is, Mitch, there are five types of brands. You could brand a company. Let’s call it a corporate brand. For example, McDonald’s, Apple, and Coca-Cola are corporate brands. Number two is a product brand. Coca-Cola has a product brand called Dr. Pepper. Apple has product brands, iPhone and iMac and the rest. McDonald’s Big Mac and on. Okay. The third type of brand is a service brand. Think of Stanley Steamer, Vistaprint or whatever. Number four is when you brand a nonprofit. Believe my friend, United Way, American Cancerous Society and American Heart Association are brands.

FTC Gerry | Branding Strategy
Branding Strategy: This whole thing about achieving brand relevancy means that you are making the strategic decision to innovate and not imitate.

 

The fifth brand is what you mentioned, which is a personal brand where you are branding yourself. Think of Oprah, Dr. Phil, Dr. Oz, Suze Orman, Rachel Ray and so on. Most of the thought leaders that I specialize in that are my sweet spot and wheelhouse are personal brands but I have some that are service brands where they are branding their company itself because they have got a team behind them quite often.

Let’s say you are with a new client for the first time and you are meeting after the initial conversation. It is time to get to work. Where do you start?

I first start by us tackling the question, what are people looking for from someone like you that they present they cannot find? That is always the starting point.

This reminds me of a conversation I had that is relevant. What do people want from me that they do not already have? What happens if I already offer that service to those people but they are not buying it?

You probably need to engage in what is called rebranding, which is you are now re-engineering, re-imagining, retooling, and revamping what you are offering. As you know, big companies rebrand all the time because the goal is to stay ahead of the curve. The goal is to make sure that you are relevant. We have a history in this great country of ours of brands that were rockstar brands that lost their relevance. Does the name MySpace ring a bell? Who thought Blockbuster would go out of business? Blackberry, AOL, RadioShack and look at what has happened in retail America. Over the last several years, major chains went bankrupt because no one saw this force that came called Amazon. It changed everything.

I’ve got to record this on my Sony Walkman. Give me a minute here. There is a perfect example of a wasted brand. I bring this up because of what you said before. If Sony were willing to engage in the creative destruction of its own marketplace, it already had invented the iPod.

Back to your question, what are the starting points? The focus becomes in this conversation called what is missing, what are people looking for that they presently cannot find. It pertains to their most urgent needs and their desires. All of us, as consumers, are always looking for the best, whatever. This whole thing about achieving brand relevancy means that you are making the strategic decision to innovate and not imitate.

The most successful entrepreneurs understand and embrace the art of differentiation. Click To Tweet

Mitch, I know service-based entrepreneurs look at their competitors and others in their industry and they duplicate what they are doing as if that is the model. No, think strategically in terms of what is it that is going to give you that edge in the marketplace. In order to find your edge, you have to be a step ahead of everyone else by zeroing in on what people want from you that they cannot find. Pivot your brand around the one thing that you do best that few others know how to do that you can leverage, which allows you to say that you are a me only brand and not me too.

In sales, we say that people do not buy what they need. They buy what they want. The goal of branding is to create that desire for the things that we have and want to sell. How do you bridge the gap? Where do branding, marketing, and selling fit into that particular type of model?

Let’s get clear on one thing about branding. A lot of people, when they hear that word, they immediately think of a logo, pretty colors, and all the aesthetics. That is only a small part of it. No one is going to do business with you because of your image. It was not going to do business with you because of your website, how you look on Zoom sounding Clubhouse or whatever. It is not that simple.

The idea here is to make the decision that you are going to put out a whole brand, which means you are putting something out that people can embrace and Lilly will fall in love with you because they see you as having something that they have been looking for that they cannot presently find or want because it ties in with what their needs are.

Once you decide to identify what that gap is, you have now bonded with your audience. The goal in marketing is to forge that bond by getting people to know, like, and trust you. How do you do that? Create a marketing funnel. Put out some courses. Do this on social media, online marketing, and digital marketing.

The part that is relevant in my world and from what I’m getting from this is that we go back to that first question. What do people want from you that you are not delivering to them? One of my favorite examples is Harley Davidson. Harley Davidson is more of an exclusionary brand than they are an inclusionary brand.

What I mean by that is that in the beginning, they are saying, “Our motorcycles are not for everybody. They are only for those people who want freedom because freedom is our brand.” They did not ask, “Do motorcycle riders want a noisy, low efficient, bulky motorcycle, or do they want something sleek, cool, slip, great gas mileage, and never breaks because it is Japanese?” No, they want freedom.

FTC Gerry | Branding Strategy
Branding Strategy: When you talk about your brand identity, it’s your face and your voice to the world.

 

What you are getting to is part of the heartbeat of branding, which is to put something out that is one of a kind. Harley Davidson is a one-of-a-kind brand. They do not have customers. They have fanatics. You could extend this to people who shop at Trader Joe’s. You could extend this to a number of well-known brands where the customer says, “You will never catch me going anywhere else. If I want coffee, I’m going to Starbucks. I’m not going to 7-Eleven.” “7-Eleven has got great coffee.” “No, I want the experience at Starbucks.”

I love telling the story of Walt Disney. When he was at an amusement park with his wife and they were sitting on a bench. He says to his wife, “I’m going to open up my own amusement park one day.” She goes, “That is crazy. Why would you want to do that? They are dirty, loud and the employees are rude.” Walt Disney says, “Exactly, my park won’t be like that.”

He does not sell the features. He does not sell Mickey Mouse. He sells the experience because Disneyland is the happiest place on earth. Now you are getting it because when you make the decision to deviate and not conform and you make the decision to go up this street, not this avenue, you are now saying, “I’m going to lead the crowd and not follow the crowd because I bear to be different.”

This goes back to what I was saying earlier about the mindset. You have to embrace the idea that you will lead, serve and deliver in such a manner whereby the experience you are providing your client is second to none. If you are doing the same thing as everybody else or if you are having conversations around your credentials, education, client list and all of that, that makes you reputable but that does not make you unique.

Let’s take this conversation down a notch and down to a practical, simple deliverable that we can together discuss for everybody who is reading and that deliverable is your LinkedIn profile. The reason I bring this up, Gerry is because I have found that most people’s LinkedIn profile reads a little bit like a resumé. I went to this college and to that college. I have this degree. I worked here but ultimately, aren’t we using and don’t we need and I believe we do, to use something like our LinkedIn profile to set the brand of who we are in the public eyes? We can attract the people that need what we offer. Would you agree with that? If so, how can we use LinkedIn to do that?

There are three levels to branding. This is big picture stuff here. Mitch, I do not know this but I was also an adjunct professor of branding, marketing, and advertising for several years at major universities. As I have told you before, I have made branding my life’s work. Branding is the only thing I have done in my entire adult life.

If you go back to USC, I made it in and all of that stuff. In the branding universe, I’m regarded as a real branding guy, the bonafide type because there are a lot of people out there who say they do branding and you find out, “You do logos and designs or your idea of branding is to shoot some videos.” I’m saying all this also to teach the people who are reading this.

The job of branding is to get you known. The job of marketing is to get you found and desired. The job of selling is to get you paid. You have to get known and get found and get paid because we're all in business to be seen, heard, and… Click To Tweet

Level one is what I have already talked about. That is where you start and it is called strategic branding. That is making sure you have got all the right pieces pulled together. You have what is called a standalone brand, the strongest body voice is possible. Level two is called visual branding. You are bringing that to life through your creative development, your website, your social media and so on. Level three is what has emerged in years and that is called social media branding, LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, etc. Here is the thing, you have to go from level 1 to level 2 to level 3. You can’t jump the level three. When it comes to a profile, think about what makes you unique, different, special and not appear average. If your profile, resumé or whatever, pretty much sounds like everybody else, you are blending in and not standing out.

In nowadays’ marketplace, unless you are distinct, you risk being extinct. You have to embrace the idea that you were born to stand out and not blend in because if you blend in, you are invisible. I talked to the penguin and the flock. Think about what it is about you that you bring to the party, to your marketplace in terms of how you lead, serve and deliver that they cannot get anywhere else, and put that on your LinkedIn profile. They got to start at level one to figure that out.

Readers, you are getting a college education here. Gerry, this has been an incredible presentation and an incredible discussion but I want to make sure everybody knows that everything is already there for you readers to go read by going to your FirstThousandClients.com, going to Gerry Foster’s show page and everything is there. Go there, download, and take a look at what he has to offer.

One more point before we move on, I discovered several years ago that my branding was all over the place. I was like different pictures, banners, this, different that, different services and books. In 2021, I decided to pull everything together. What you see is my brand. That is the colors, the shapes, the subtle cues that the arrow behind me, of people walking, all of this is my brand. This plays throughout all of my social media, my websites, and all of my products and services that, for the first time ever, have pulled together, clarified everything that I am, and made a huge difference.

All of that is great but people want to know what is behind all of that, which is why they engage you and you are the success that you are. Mitch, I was speaking at a conference once and I said to the audience, “For those of you who have a hard time understanding that a brand is more than a logo, your visuals and things that people can see, let’s take Coke and Pepsi. I doubt that the Coca-Cola drinkers preferred Coke because it is in the red can and the Pepsi people because it is in the blue can. It is what is inside the can that counts.”

The question is, what is inside your can? I’m not saying this about you but you can have people who have all the aesthetics and whatever but when you get into the can or open up that pretty, beautiful, wrapped up present gift that looks, “It’s got sprinkles. I love the wrapping paper.” It is empty. There is nothing of substance in it.

I like what you have, though but I do not want people to think that their brand and I do not want to get too technical here. The visual part is what is called your brand identity. When you talk about your brand identity, it is your face to the world and your voice to the world. The face to the world is great and that is important.

FTC Gerry | Branding Strategy
Branding Strategy: We live in a brand-conscious world. People prefer to do business with a brand. The choice is, do you want to put out a brand or be bland?

 

The key is what do you want your brand to convey? What impression do you want to make? How do you want to come across? You feed that to a designer and they can come back with recommendations on the color scheme, images and all of that. The key, which is what I do, part of the hard stuff is what your voice does to the world. What are you willing to promise? What makes you me only, not me too? What is your secret sauce? We had not talked about the secret sauce. What is that?

We can talk forever on this. I love the story. Do you remember the story of Rheingold Beer? It is a popular story. I’m from New York and Rheingold was an Upstate New York beer brand. Like every other canned beer in the world, they wanted to differentiate themselves. They called up an ad agency. The owner of the company said, “Why don’t you come down to the brewery and we can talk? This is where my office is.”

He shows up at the brewery and he has never seen a brewery before. He goes, “Look at those huge steel. What is that? Look at that amazing roasting system for grains. What is that?” At the end of the day, he said, “I know that you make beer but I never knew what went into making beer. Why don’t you tell the world how you make beer?” He goes, “Why would I? Everybody makes beer the same way?” This brilliant branding guy says, “Yes but no one shows them how.”

Rheingold’s entire secret to success is they talked about the process of how they create what they call the finest beer in the land. Gerry, I hate to interrupt because we are having so much fun but we do need to move on to the next segment of the show, which is where we get to know you a little bit better.

It is going to start with a simple but insightful question that will tell me and maybe readers a lot about the way you think and where you come from. Let’s start with this. Who in all of the space in time would you like to have one hour to enjoy a walk in the park, a quick lunch, or an intense conversation with?

John F. Kennedy.

Tell me why.

You were born to stand out and not blend in. Click To Tweet

He was a world changer. He declared a man on the moon in three years or something. He was a visionary. He and his wife, Jackie Onassis, part of their brand image were Camelot. He was inspirational and such an incredible leader. He comes to the top of my list.

If you had this time, what would you ask him?

What drives you? What do you connect your work to?

That is a great question. A question maybe we should all ask ourselves as well. Thank you for that answer. I’m going to ask you what I call the grand finale. The change the world question. Are you ready?

Yes.

I think I know the answer but I’m going to make sure they ask anyway and that is, what is it that you are doing or like to do that truly has the potential to change the world?

I want to impact a minimum of a million lives and a minimum of service-based entrepreneurs so that they can truly put something out into the world and going to allow them to fulfill whatever their destiny is. I will say this, “The vessel is this thing called their brand.” That is the vessel. It is not the product or the service.

FTC Gerry | Branding Strategy
Branding Strategy: When you make the decision to deviate and not conform, you are saying that you’re going to lead the crowd and not follow them because you dare to be different.

 

People do not buy brands, Mitch. Research shows what people buy is one of four things. One, can you solve a problem I have? Two, can you provide better outcomes for me? Three, can you perform a miracle in my eyes and make the impossible possible. Number four, can you provide me with some emotional pay-off?

The key is to connect this vessel that you have been given by your creator, however you define that for yourself. Take that vessel, this gift that you have and transform it into a game-changing brand that people see you as being unlike no one else. That is what drives me. I want to reach and impact at least a million service-based entrepreneurs. They can indeed fulfill that.

Gerry, you are setting your sights a little too low. You have already impacted a million now.

I should have qualified it. A million within the next couple of years.

We are at the point in one of my favorite parts of the show is, where we get to share something special that you have created uniquely for us. I would like to find out what that is and how people can go ahead and take advantage of that?

I have a free one-hour video mini-course called Stand Out and Captivate. It is one of my favorite live training programs that I did in front of a large audience. I have broken it down into bite-size nuggets of training videos. I want to give that away to your readers, which also includes $1,000 worth of free bonuses. One of them is to have a brand storming session with me one-on-one to talk about your brand by Zoom. I can give you some feedback and some guidance. I do not sell people anything. I’m a giver, not a taker.

I also want to point out that in the past, we have had guests like you offer some of their time for free and in the past, what we have found is that the people who take advantage of this most quickly are the ones who get the best experience, not to belittle any of the great guests that I have had. Sometimes there are many requests that come in over such a long period of time and it is hard for them to deliver as many of those free one-hour or rebranding sessions. I’m going to say to you readers, “Take advantage of this now before we wary Gerry out.” Jump on this opportunity and tell me if I’m right about this, do not connect with Gerry to speak with him until you have watched the video. It will make the session you have far more productive.

Thank you for sharing that because that training program includes worksheets. You can apply what you are learning as you go along. When we have our session together, we can take a look at how you are seeing yourself as a brand and how you are applying what I teach in that course. People love that training. It is one of a kind.

Thank you very much, professor, for this incredible session that we have had together and your incredible gift of skill and knowledge to my readers and myself. As I mentioned once before, “This is now going to be over 300 interviews that I have done in the last several years.” It is like going to university for a free high-level college education every single day and I love it.

I encourage everyone to spend their time in university with me by reading and learning from these incredible people like Gerry. Take advantage of this stuff because it is there and you can benefit if you take advantage. Gerry, thank you so much for your time. I can’t wait until we get a chance to talk again soon.

Thank you. This was awesome.

 

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About Gerry Foster

FTC Gerry | Branding StrategyAs a Brand Strategist, I specialize in working with service-based business owners who want to stand out, get noticed, & be desired so they can have more impact and make more money.

I’m the creator of the Big Brand Formula, a proven 3-step guided system I use that enables my clients and students to ‘find the rhythm’ of their brand for greater success. From this system, they have been able to transform what they offer into magnificent, high-performance brands.

Strategic branding is the only work I’ve done in my entire adult life! I’ve dedicated my life to creating brands that people can fall in love with, cherish and value.

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