Stand Out from the Crowd: Secrets to Crafting a Winning Company Identity

Question: Who is the intended audience?

  • Small and mid-sized business owners
  • Business development staff
  • Entrepreneurs responsible for marketing their own businesses
  • Professional service providers (i.e. doctors, lawyers)
  • Independent sales reps (e.g. insurance agents)
  • Marketing staff members
  • Sales personnel
  • Advertising agencies
  • Students

Q: What is the book about?
A: A company’s identity is far more than just letterhead, logo and business cards. It requires an end-to-end communications approach with verbal, written, and visual messages that target the customers you want to reach, ensure consistency in all marketing materials, and keep your identity program on track.

In Stand Out from the Crowd, I offer entrepreneurs, small-business owners, and marketers the necessary tools to implement a comprehensive company identity strategy. With clear-cut action steps, case studies, and visual examples, I highlight the best ways to build a reputation and make a lasting impression.

Readers in turn will learn how to:

  • Ensure their customers notice – and remember – their business.
  • Create power-packed visual elements, such as logos, colors, and images.
  • Make sure their corporate identity is used consistently.
  • Craft a selling proposition that moves customers to buy.

Q: Why are you the best person to write this book?
A: I wrote my book because it seems like every month I run into business leaders who need marketing advice, but can’t afford it. So, I decided one way I could help them was to write a book that was heavy on information, but light on their wallets.

My background is pretty much all in marketing. For over twenty years now, I’ve worked to help market products, services and businesses. After I got an MBA in Marketing from Northwestern’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management in the 80’s, I worked for marketing powerhouses like General Mills, Novartis and Select Comfort. I went as far as I could on that track, then I launched my own business, Emerge Marketing in 1994. Emerge offers strategic marketing consulting to growing companies between $1 million and $50 million in sales.

Ever since I started my business I’ve sought to educate business leaders about strategic marketing and what it can do for their businesses. To help with this effort in 2004, I started publishing a free e-newsletter called Marketing Tips & Tools. Readers can sign up for a free copy here.

The title of the book, Stand Out from the Crowd actually comes from my clients. Many said what they really needed was a set of marketing tools to help their company stand out from the crowd. After hearing this for the 100th time, I realized my book’s title should capture this image.

Q: How is this book different from other books on this topic?

A: I’ve read many, many marketing books, and only a few of them really deliver the goods. Too many fall short of offering practical, use-it-today advice about building a company’s brand. Either they 1) tell you what to do, but don’t show you how or 2) they cover topics and examples that are irrelevant to other businesses.

I call these Twinkie books; you know like a Hostess Twinkie®. Looks good on the outside, but not much substance on the inside.

That’s why I packed my book full of checklists, quizzes and tools that a marketing leader can start using today.

People these days just don’t have time to read a whole book and then realize it sucks.

Q: Is there anything else we should know about this book?
A: Yeah there are lots of small business marketing books out there, but how many of them deal with strategic issues like how to target the right customers, how to successfully implement marketing projects, how to write your own marketing plan and ways to effectively brand your business. Mine does.

I saw some recent statistics from the National Federation of Independent Businesses that said over 50% of small business owners launch their businesses without marketing or sales experience. And I realized that few people start a business because they love marketing, but without it your survival is at stake.

So I wrote Stand Out from the Crowd; Secrets to Crafting a Winning Company Identity as a small business marketing book that was practical, down-to-earth and easy-to-understand. Sort of a marketing guide for the journey.