Brand Authenticity Without the BS

Popular German literature has spoken about the tragedy of Dr. Faust and the deal he signed with Mephistopheles, the devil’s chief agent in gathering souls, in exchange for success on his own terms. We all know how that ends.

In fostering authenticity in branding, the marketer is often faced with a dilemma all too familiar to begin with, The Faustian Deal. There is no denying that a lot of stuff out there in the open, the ones mostly coming from bush leagues promoting easy schemes in exchange for whatever hack work they deem important for you as the consumer, are undeniably, resoundingly familiar.

Let me just say that in getting started with authentic branding there really is no reason to cut corners and to put out something that doesn’t look genuine. If it’s not something that doesn’t look authentic or trustworthy and is being pushed by your regular sheisty type marketer then it simply is not. Chicken hawkery is when people are trying to convince people to do something that they’ve never done, and sadly it rings true especially in the web marketing space and so as a web marketer myself, it’s a thing that drives me nuts.

There are, and will always be, the archetype Darth Vader characters who in essence, sell their souls in order to get something that they perceive to be valuable. They’re taking shortcuts and they’re turning to the dark side. Yes, that is how it actually looks in the world of marketing and authentic branding.

The McDowell’s Lesson

In the Eddie Murphy movie “Coming to America”, John Amos plays Cleo McDowell, the epitome of the piggyback riding marketer. In the movie, his character places a clear distinction between McDonald’s and McDowell’s.

“They’re McDonald’s … I’m McDowell’s. They got the Golden Arches, mine is the Golden Arcs. They got the Big Mac, I got the Big Mick. We both got two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, and onions, but their buns have sesame seeds. My buns have no seeds.”

When you’re doing branding you want to make sure that you don’t try to mimic the look of chains or big brands. A lot of people out there would disagree and a lot of people would tell you to try to piggyback different brands, but the truth is, that’s something you don’t want to do. 

You don’t want to do the “as seen on Fox News, CNN”  buff up about stuff that every single company out there does for you. Why would anyone want Egg McStuffins when you can have Egg McMuffins? Even in the kingdom of Zamunda, that would just not seem right. 

Basically jacking off a brand, results in not making your own identity work and means not developing your own authenticity. That’s one of the first tells that someone doesn’t actually know what they’re doing or have the passion for what they’re going for, because they’re not interested in creating a unique identity. They want shortcuts. They want the ultimate piggyback ride to take them to blockbuster status at no time at all. That’s the bush-league stuff you need to unlearn.

It should be avoided at all costs because there is a better way, a more trustworthy way, and you’re actually going to get more sales because of it. One of the big mistakes that some people can make is that they try to be something that they’re not, remember that always. 

Don’t overdress. If and when you do, make it a point to dress nice, dress for the right occasion.

If you’re a casual, blue-collar guy, and you’re trying to start a business, you’d want to get into something that is for you, that’s authentic to you. You want to make sure you just don’t try to be something that you’re not, you don’t want to go out and try to wear a fancy suit, and things like that because it actually ends up making you look superficial and cheap. 

In continually doing so, you actually achieve the opposite effect you are vying for. You become sort of a penny-pinching pretender as opposed to, you know, someone who really is operating with class and integrity. Stuff like that is the idea of what those things connote, with the efficacy turning out to be the opposite.

Green Screens

For the love of God, don’t ever use green screens. 

There’s a lot of successful companies that use green screens. Do not ever be like them. When it comes to marketing strategies that actually work, the truth in advertising adage has always been indelible. Green screens and filters make your product look like something straight out of science fiction.

In this day and age where Hollywood magic can make everything seem like canon in a Thanos snap, everyone buys into the idea of instant success. Everyone is sold to the faux pleasure of instant gratification. Take a look at selfie filters. Cover those makeup blunders, blur the background, and make the perfect photo of something that you are not. Thrive on the likes from people on your so-called “friends” list, increase your subscribers, and try as hard as you may, you are still not as “authentic” as you project yourself to be.

Do not get me wrong. It’s actually kind of cool that we have all this technology around us where we can grab things, go live and do a webinar from the grocery store, while you’re out on a walk, or while you’re getting some exercise. Have a nice little webinar in your office or wherever you happen to be. Do it on your cell phone, no one’s gonna have any issues with that. People don’t care. In fact, they’re going to believe the authenticity of it, they’re going to like the fact that you’re a human being dealing with another human being. Remember, human beings want to work with other human beings. Human beings don’t want to work with a slicked-up version of a game show host. 

Be yourself. Unless you are a game show host. Because if you are a game show host, then be a game show host, there’s nothing wrong with that. But the general idea here is you don’t have to go to great lengths to create false ideas, or these grandiose environments and things like that. Be yourself, be a good business person, and know your art. You’re going to be fine. 

Remember this: Knowledge reigns supreme over everyone. So when I say know your art, we’re talking about knowing your craft and mastering your art form. Being good at what you do, developing mastery over what it is that you’re doing, whether that’s credit repair, business, finance, or whatever. Make sure you’re passionate about it, and that your passion is driving you to develop mastery over whatever it is that you’re doing. 

Don’t want and pretend to be something that you’re not. Don’t pretend that you have skills or the skill sets that you need when you haven’t got it. Be open, let people know what you do, and what you don’t do. When you’re pitching people and you’re new to the industry, one of the things that you’ll see is a lot of organizations trying to pretend that they’re older than they are, instead of just telling people “Hey, I’m new at this.” 

If you’re passionate and genuine, you come from a place of truthfulness and operate with karma as your number one standard, then rest assured, you’re going to do well.

A lot of new businesses keep on making mistakes and never learn from the past. These are some of the things that I’ve learned over time. And I think that you can find this very valuable. I think it’s particularly valuable in credit repair, because in credit repair, you know, people have their guard up anyway. There’s a lot of trust involved in the transactions and you have to develop a very consultative approach. 

You’re dealing with fundamental credibility.  In doing so, you have to be credible yourself. You can’t be out there saying that you’re going to teach someone how to develop their own personal credibility, and you’re missing the whole picture. You won’t be doing it right. Do not be that person trying so hard to project success that he fails miserably in doing so. If in your pretentiousness, you wear all the colors the wrong way and not be able to own up to a lie, then just don’t.

“Be a Doer, not a Poser.”

Take action, be a doer..not a poser. If you’re someone who is trying to project success, which is a good thing to do. But you want to make sure that you’re in a business where you don’t get caught in a situation where you’re recruiting people to sort of do things that you can’t do. 

A lot of times, you’ll see this with leaders who will try to get people to sell things that they wouldn’t sell. Placing somebody on the phone book, pay him on commission, and put them in a situation that they would never put themselves in. If you’re doing this, just be sure that you’ve got someone willing to do the work you won’t do, and if you’re saying that this is something that someone can be successful at, make sure that you’ve done it yourself and it is possible to be successful at it. 

Make sure that you’re speaking from experience, make sure that if you’re trying to push a product, that you will use the product yourself. Make sure that your employees and the people in your organization understand what your product is and make sure that they are able to take advantage of it in such a way that they are going to believe in your product because it actually works and functions very well. 

And these are all part of mastering your craft. Actually understanding what you’re doing and how you’re doing it works on the marketing side as well. Here’s an example of some bad marketing. 

“Learn the super duper easy way to make $1 billion in 30 seconds, it’s so easy a child can do it!”

You see this stuff all the time. These things will come through in your email, on your phone, everywhere on social media, and worst, through somebody familiar who just got sold into the idea and can’t keep from yapping about how the formula works.

That’s when your BS meter goes off.

Because there IS no way to learn the super-duper easy way. There IS no way to earn or make an easy billion in 30 seconds. Because if there was a way, and they could do it, they’d have no reason to market to you because they would have owned an island by now. They’d be living the life on Easy Street right at the end of an endless tab. 

Most people have a good sort of common sense when it comes to that stuff. But it’s the type of mistake that new business professionals will make because they’re trying to get good at the marketing game. They’re trying to put out an aura or perception and things like that and eventually, they end up copying people and doing all those things that they’re not doing right. 

There’s no authenticity and it’s not cool. When you’re doing your marketing and you’re doing advertising, or when you’re doing your pitch on the phone with people, remember, everything isn’t easy. Everything is never super duper amazing, and success never comes as fast as you think it will.

Authentic branding requires something far larger and bigger in terms of scale when it comes to viable connections with your target market. You need to make sure that you are conveying a genuine philosophy with something that people can engage with on an emotional level. 

On that phone call, while setting out to do your pitch, you need to believe in your product and you need to sound believable. That’s the power of authenticity. 

Believe this instead:

If you’re touting everything as easy, fast, and super-duper amazing, what’s going to happen is you’re going to lose your credibility because people know. Yes, people see through filters and green screens. They see through BS and all the stuff that comes with it. Because life is just like that. It isn’t always awesome and it isn’t always good. 

This is particularly true of the credit repair industry. 

When you’re trying to rehab somebody’s credit, if anything, it’s much like you’re selling somebody a fitness product, right? What you see are a lot of flare-up brands and things like that, where everything takes 10 minutes, five minutes, or whatever. That’s all good, but trust me when I say, you don’t want to be that company. .

Let your story unfold organically and be patient. Make sure your actions are in the right direction. Get started, get to work, start doing things, start practicing your trades, start practicing your craft, and document everything that’s going on. 

In time, you will eventually need to source information from different places and follow success principles but never copy. Never be a hack. Understand the higher-level concepts that are at play in a certain situation then grab pieces of those you find useful and important, and build them within your own business. 

Because  in writing those success stories, you’ll soon face situations that aren’t so great which require you to be a critical thinker and do the things that make sense for you and your business. This is especially true when you’re trying to build a company worth investing your time and energy in. 

You need to believe it’s worth doing it right because if you believe that to be true, that it’s worth telling people the way it is and how it should be, then it’s worth telling people that you can make it easier for people. Right?

But do tell them not to expect overnight results and in credit repair, though it happens from time to time, it isn’t the norm. You will sound more credible if you let people know that and you’re going to need to improve your attention as a consequence, as well. 

This is all part of being authentic and this is all part of being believable when you’re out there marketing the stuff that doesn’t follow a set formula. This is all part of being trustworthy. 

Believe me, soon enough, you’re going to have success stories worthy of tales that transcend time and space. Tales that are spun around the power of credibility and true authenticity. A tale told one too many times at length, yet not a tall one at all.  Because that’s who we are and what we stand for at Mirku, and that’s what we have sturdily built for Disputesuite through the years. 

Our brand advocacy is the value of being real with no green screens or filters. Hopefully, yours too. 

Join me, Rob Ellerman, at The Power Hour and learn more about how you can build credibility and spell success for your own business. 

More than just a private consultation, The Power Hour is a comprehensive analysis of your business with actionable steps to meet your professional goals. It is a comprehensive action plan individually unique to every business, regardless of scale or size. 

The Power Hour is my personal invitation to you for an exclusive all- access full- hour private session for a comprehensive analysis of your business. The Power Hour is a gift I want to personally share with you and you can receive it personally clicking the button below:

EP 01: Authentic Branding Social Media Snippets

  1. When getting started with authentic branding there really is no reason to cut corners and to put out something that doesn’t look genuine. 

  2. If it’s not something that doesn’t look authentic or trustworthy and is being pushed by your regular sheisty type marketer then it simply is not.

  3. Chicken hawkery is when people are trying to convince people to do something that they’ve never done, and sadly it rings true especially in the web marketing space.

  4. There are, and will always be, the archetype Darth Vader characters who in essence, sell their souls in order to get something that they perceive to be valuable. They’re taking shortcuts and they’re turning to the dark side.

  5. When you’re doing branding you want to make sure that you don’t try to mimic the look of chains or big brands. A lot of people out there would disagree and a lot of people would tell you to try to piggyback different brands, but the truth is, that’s something you don’t want to do.

  6. Why would anyone want Egg McStuffins when you can have Egg McMuffins? Basically jacking off a brand, results in not making your own identity work and means not developing your own authenticity. 

  7. One of the big mistakes that some people can make is that they try to be something that they’re not, remember that always. 

  8. Don’t overdress. If and when you do, make it a point to dress nice, dress for the right occasion.

  9. For the love of God, don’t ever use green screens. 

  10. There’s a lot of successful companies that use green screens. Do not ever be like them. When it comes to marketing strategies that actually work, the truth in advertising adage has always been indelible. Green screens and filters make your product look like something straight out of science fiction.

  11. In this day and age where Hollywood magic can make everything seem like canon in a Thanos snap, everyone buys into the idea of instant success. Everyone is sold to the faux pleasure of instant gratification. 

  12. Have a nice little webinar in your office or wherever you happen to be. Do it on your cell phone, no one’s gonna have any issues with that. People don’t care. In fact, they’re going to believe the authenticity of it, they’re going to like the fact that you’re a human being dealing with another human being. 

  13. The general idea here is you don’t have to go to great lengths to create false ideas, or these grandiose environments and things like that. Be yourself, be a good business person, and know your art. You’re going to be fine.

  14. Knowledge reigns supreme over everyone. So when I say know your art, we’re talking about knowing your craft and mastering your art form. Being good at what you do, developing mastery over what it is that you’re doing, whether that’s credit repair, business, finance, or whatever. Make sure you’re passionate about it, and that your passion is driving you to develop mastery over whatever it is that you’re doing. 

  15. If you’re passionate and genuine, you come from a place of truthfulness and operate with karma as your number one standard, then rest assured, you’re going to do well.