There are some tools that can help you as you begin to build your brand.
All great books that help you learn more about your brand and how to build a community behind it, because like I say, a brand is not the product, it’s the story you tell, the mission you have, and ultimately how it makes your readers, viewers, customers and students feel.
Full disclosure: The links below are Amazon affiliate links. That means if you click that link and subsequently make a purchase, we will earn a commission. You pay nothing extra; any commission we earn comes at no additional cost to you.
Superfans, by Pat Flynn [Amazon link]
This is my most recent book, and as I mentioned in the previous chapter, in the book I teach you how you can create all kinds of different experiences that will lead people to become fans of your work, spread the message, and thus spread your brand as well. Branding is not just about design or a logo, it’s an overall experience of your brand. This book will help you to create those experiences that will make your fans loyal.
Building a StoryBrand, by Donald Miller [Amazon link]
Before you can build your brand, you need to know your story. In this book Donald Miller helps you to clarify your story so you can be confident and clear when talking about your business to others. Building a StoryBrand does this by teaching listeners the seven universal story points all humans respond to, the real reason customers make purchases, how to simplify a brand message so people understand it, and how to create the most effective messaging for websites, brochures, and social media.
Talk Triggers, by Jay Baer [Amazon link]
Word-of-mouth is a powerful tool to help make your brand catch on fire. But nobody talks about just average products or experiences. They talk about unique, fun, extraordinary experiences and brands. (Think about Doubletree Hotels by Hilton and the warm cookies they offer you when checking in.) In this book, Jay Baer gives several case studies of companies that have created chatter by doing unique things. He offers readers a 4-5-6 learning system (the 4 requirements for a differentiator to be a talk trigger; the 5 types of talk triggers; and the 6-step process for creating talk triggers).
Made to Stick, by Chip and Dan Heath [Amazon link]
In Made to Stick, Chip and Dan Heath reveal the anatomy of ideas that stick and explain ways to make ideas stickier, such as applying the human scale principle, using the Velcro Theory of Memory, and creating curiosity gaps. Along the way, readers will discover that sticky messages of all kinds—from the infamous “kidney theft ring” hoax to a coach’s lessons on sportsmanship to a vision for a new product at Sony—draw their power from the same six traits.
Primal Branding, by Patrick Hanlon [Amazon link]
Patrick Hanlon is a former advertising executive and branding expert who has worked on brands such as LEGO. In this book Hanlon explains how the most powerful brands create a community of believers around the brand, revealing the seven components that will help every company and marketer capture the public.
We talked about this in a previous chapter, but I want to mention it again here because it’s so important. To me, email marketing is still the best tool you can use to communicate with your audience, to help support your mission, the brand and serve your audience. It’s the only communication platform that you still own and control, and thus I highly recommend getting an email list setup. If you’re starting from scratch, start with 100emails.com challenge to help you get your first 100 email subscribers (because it is a lot easier than you think!), and when you’re ready to start sending email broadcasts and building automations and start to put your brand and email communication on autopilot, check out ConvertKit.
If you’re not a designer, it can be intimidating to try to figure out how to create a professional-looking website, logo, and other visual branding. But thankfully, there are several online platforms that can make it easy for you to connect and work with professional designers at a reasonable price.
When my videographer, Caleb, and I were developing SwitchPod, we needed a top-notch design for our logo. So we checked out 99 Designs, which is a platform where you can find a designer for what you need. Here’s how it works: You submit a design brief for a logo (or website, business cards, etc.). Various designers will look at your request and send you ideas. You’ll provide feedback and then select the winner who will design your logo.
Here’s the SwitchPod logo, which I think turned out amazing:
To get your website up and running, check out my course, Build Your Own Brand, which is a free course designed as a challenge with a process to get your brand and website up in five days. There’s more information about this in Chapter 8, but I just want to mention it here as well.
In addition, I recommend the following:
Bluehost is our go-to hosting platform for all of our websites, including this one.
Bluehost is a proven powerhouse in the website hosting industry. They offer exceptional customer service. They allow you to host multiple domains under one account, which is super convenient. They're as reliable as they come. And they offer an exclusive discount just for you as an SPI Fan: hosting for only $2.75/month!
Website Creation and Content Management System (CMS)
WordPress is the platform we used to build this website, and we highly recommend it if you want an easy and intuitive way to get your site up and running. WordPress offers built‑in optimization and responsive, mobile‑ready themes that allow you to create a simple website for your family or sell products around the world—it’s up to you.
[Note: Some of the above links are affiliate links. That means if you click that link and subsequently make a purchase, we will earn a commission. You pay nothing extra; any commission we earn comes at no additional cost to you.]
Now, let’s talk about how you can take your branding to the next level in the next chapter!