Troubleshooting

multimeter-523153_960_720My degree is in electronics as an ET (electronics technician). So, I know some of you are asking … who cares? You will care once you understand the methodology of troubleshooting and how that can help you hack into your perfect brand.

The art of troubleshooting is counter intuitive to most standard problem solving. Standard problem solving has an answer, and then you start at the beginning and work forward to the end result. In the electronics world, you start at the end and work backwards.

hi-fi-1138027_960_720Let’s say you are having trouble trying to play music through speakers. First you check the speakers, then you check the wire between the amp and the speaker, then you check the amp. Next you check the input into the amplifier, and then you check the wire from the source to the amp, and finally you look at the original source of the audio signal.

Starting out at the original audio source first can take 2-10 times longer to figure out the problem, than starting at the end result first and working backwards to the original source!

So I know some of you are asking … what does that have to do with my brand?

What Is a Brand?

Brand Branding Marketing Commercial Name Concept

Many people are confused about what a brand truly is. That is why most people start out working on their logo, fonts and website first and figure out the rest later. What you really should do is start at the end result and work backwards. In most businesses, the end result would be a sale. Then you have to identify who bought your product or service. Next, you have to figure out what led them to buy … where did they hear about you, what convinced them to make a decision to buy, and how did they get there and find your messages?

The website, logo, and fonts are far from the reason people purchase, but they are still a part of that decision. They are just not as important as the rest of the sequence.

Start With The End Game

The speaker in the troubleshooting concept is your end client. If they love what you do or provide, they will be your speaker and will tell others about your products or services. The wires are the connectors. The amp and the source are the messages, and your website is the audio source. Let me explain…

  1. Start With Your Perfect Avatar – Your perfect customer is where you need to start with your brand. Who are they and what do they like, need and want? If you can define that, then you can work backwards creating communications to attack and satisfy them.
  2. Find Out What They Are Consuming – This is the cable (or conduit) to your messages. Are they on email, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, or a combination of these and others? Once you know this, then you know how and where to direct your messages.
  3. Create Content That Fills Their Needs – This is the amp in the previous example. You have to create a way to amplify your brand, and that comes in the form of content. Content includes blogs, podcast, videos and pictures that spread your message about your brand through the wire to the speakers (the right customers).
  4. Build A Marketing System To Collect Names – This is the second set of wires that connects your content to your home base or website and home base marketing messages. This includes email marketing and the systems you use to distribute the content created to link people back to your website.
  5. Build The Basics – Logo, Website, Them Focused Messages – Let’s face it, bad music is bad, good music is good (subject to taste). Your customers will decide. You have to have a home base that speaks to the taste of the end user. Once you know your customers, including their needs, problems and tastes, you can build the best grammy winning album of content that they will either call into the radio station to request or add to their internet radio station playlist (you get it) to share across all social media platforms!

Final Thoughts

technology-374937_960_720I really hope the metaphor of the audio system makes sense. Most of you understand the stereo system, but if all you know are bluetooth and wireless communications, it may be a bit confusing!

The point is that once you know who your ideal customer is, you can reverse engineer how to communicate to them. If you start with your website, logo, and brand, and then try to figure out who your customer is, then you are pushing your marketing uphill. If you are starting with your customer, and then figuring out where they are hanging out, what messages to provide, how to build a system to meet them where they are, and then build the website, logo and other stuff, then it’s dragging you downhill.

I don’t know about you, but it takes less effort to control a rock going down a hill, then trying to push a rock up a hill! Same rock … different effort! Gravity sucks!

I would love to hear your thoughts and comments!