The number 1 problem with most failed or ineffective marketing efforts is that they lack a brand. It’s like sitting next to someone without a personality at a wedding reception – you end up moving seats (I did it this past weekend).

The brand is that thing in your marketing that makes people sit up and take a second look. In fact, let’s refer to the brand as the “second look effect”. Very few companies have it in their marketing. It is mostly a yawn!

If your marketing does not provoke a second look, then you lack a brand and your marketing is a waste of money. Simple as that!

What does a brand do? It creates that “oh, wait a minute” effect where someone’s primitive brain picks up on something that may just help them get through the day a little easier. It comes down to the basics of human existence: are these guys going to make my life easier? More fun? More successful? Less stressed? More sexy?

Raw stuff!

That’s what a great brand does. It hits a note deep down in our minds, forcing us to park our busy lives just for a second and take notice. It is a reflex reaction, not a conscious one. Crucially, it is true for marketing to individual shoppers as well as to companies, because companies are made up of people. All marketing is ultimately human-to-human!

Great marketing is not about spending money, making a noise or “being out there”. It is about provoking basic responses in people who only have a limited time on this earth and trust me, deep down we all know it!

Is your marketing making people stop? Do you have a brand underpinning what you say?