I started a new business last year which gave me a unique opportunity to figure out my new brand – how I wanted AEC Business Solutions to be viewed and perceived in the marketplace. It is very exciting starting a new business after 25 years doing the same thing. The new business is different, and the new image and “look and feel” of our online presence, messaging and other marketing needs to be aligned with how we want clients and potential clients to evaluate us.
I gave this a lot of thought. I started with what I didn’t want:
I didn’t want us to be the same as we were before
I didn’t want us to look like our competitors
I didn’t want to say the same old thing that everyone else is saying
Then I tried to consolidate how I DID want my new firm to be branded:
I want us to be relevant for the future
I want us to be innovative and cool
I want to offer more value and measurable results
I want to have clients that are raving fans!!
Then I went about looking at other industries and trying to identify one that has a new, edgy player that is really making an impact. And it was easy – it is Tesla.
Think about the car industry for a minute, you have domestic brands like Chevy and Ford, you have mid-priced imports like Toyota or Hyundai, and then there are the high-end imports like BMW, Rolls Royce, and Bentley. So how did Tesla get into such a competitive market dominated with old-school companies that are so well known? It is their branding.
Tesla appeals to a specific audience that wants the latest most innovative vehicles. It also appeals to people that want to be kind to the environment, and drive a hybrid vehicle. It also obviously appeals to people who want to drive a really cool looking car! Tesla is not for everyone and they are not trying to sell to everyone. That is exactly how I want my firm to be!!
That is why I am taking all of my clients to a special VIP reception at the Tesla showroom at Tyson’s Corner mall after the 2015 AEC Profitability Summit in September. One of our sessions is about raising fees and rebranding your firm to attract different and better clients. I believe Tesla is the perfect example of how to do this right, and I hope this experience will have an impact on our clients so that they go back to their offices with inspiration to figure out who they really want to be in the markets they serve.
So I challenge you to decide – what do you want you firm to be?
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June: Already a fan! 🙂 Looking forward to watching your new business grow. Your comments about your brand interestingly mirror what has been on my mind this last week. Specifically, how a strong brand communicates both who you are, and who you aren’t.