Having a great brand for your blog is even more important: it will make all of your marketing pay off. People will easily remember the name and your blog will stand out from your competitors. But finding a great brand isn’t easy. Sometimes it appears out of the blue in a flash of brilliance. (Photo credit: Shutterstock)
But most of the time, it takes careful thought and excavation to find what works for you. Your goal is to find a branding name and identity so that readers can remember your blog, immediately know what problems you solve, and feel confident you have something to offer them.
For example, “The Blog Squad” is a name that identifies what I do: I help people solve blogging problems. There is an additional “flavor” of what a squadron is known to do: fly in and attack or fix a burning issue. It’s short and to the point and has the added advantage of rhyming for easy remembrance.
But that was a lucky find. It came after long sessions of brainstorming with other people.
Writing on the Web is now the name for this blog, but before I was only writing about e-newsletters and ezines for coaches. So I named it CoachEzines.com. And I domain-mapped it so that all pages and links have that name. Unfortunately, things evolved and so did this blog. Once your blog is domain-mapped, if you change it again, you'll have broken links all over the place. So it's important to view your blog out into the future, if you can, to envision it's evolution.
I highly recommend you use colleagues and friends to help you find a brand name. At the end of this post, I'll give you several books that will help stimulate this process for you.
Here are 10 steps to help stimulate your creative branding process:
10 Steps to Finding Your Blog Brand
- Define the purpose of your blog. Write it down with clarity. Think in terms of values and benefits to clients.
- Look for your core message and make a list of keywords. Let it flow without censure, then review and eliminate those that are least essential or defining.
- What are the key benefits derived from working with you or buying your products, books, or services? What problems do you solve? What pain do you relieve? Again, make the list free-flowing without censure; you can refine it later.
- Look at your own name. Are any similarities to common words you can use?
- Make a list of keywords in two columns – These words can be any that describe the work you do or the benefits to your clients, or anything that is key. Then create a new word using one syllable from each of two words. Examples: The Strategenius, The Innercreater, The Speechinator, etc.
- Go to www.imdb.com/search and search for movie titles and famous phrases using your keywords. Then re-work a movie title to form a slogan or tag line that is relevant to your work. Example: “Go ahead, make my eBay.”
- Use a cliché dictionary to find common phrases or slogans and rework them using your keywords or your name. Example: www.clichesite.com/index.asp. “Think outside the bun” is a rework of a cliché that is used by Taco Bell. Another interesting site to search for clichés, rhymes, anagrams, and quotes is http://dictionary.langenberg.com/.
- Use a music title search database such as www.ascap.com/ace/ to look for song titles and phrases and rework them for your name or business branding. Or use other sites such as www.allbutforgottenoldies.net/ and www.songsearch.com/ .
- Use a quotations dictionary to find famous quotes you can use and re-phrase: www.bartleby.com/ , www.famous-quotations.com, www.brainyquote.com.
- Use a keyword search tool to discover words that are most frequently used by your target audience to find solutions to their problems. Put yourself in the shoes of your ideal clients and try to imagine what words they would use to search for a business such as yours. Compare the popularity of variations of keyword phrases. This will help you find out which words are most relevant to your business. www.freekeywords.wordtracker.com/
Here are some great books on branding from experts who can help stimulate your creativity and branding process.
POP! Stand Out in Any Crowd, by Sam Horn (Really good for stimulating creative thinking!)
The Anatomy of Buzz, by Emanuel Rosen
Hot Button Marketing, by Barry Feig
The Elements of Persuasion, by Richard Maxwell & Robert Dickman
Waiting for Your Cat to Bark, by Bryan & Jeffrey Eisenberg
Career Distinction, William Arruda and Kirsten Dixson