How much do your name, logo and color scheme really matter?
A schmuck falls off the balcony on the 30th floor.
A putz is the guy he lands on.
A putz is passively stupid; ridiculously unlucky.
Could a company succeed with a name like Putzmeister?
Could a company win if its logo was indistinctive and boring and literally gray?
Putzmeister was founded by Karl Schlecht in 1958. Today it employs 3,900 people that produce more than $ 1.5 billion in annual sales in 154 countries on 5 continents, name and logo and color be damned.
$1.5 billion, by the way,
is fifteen hundred
times a thousand,
times a thousand.
Fifteen hundred million.
Wal-Mart may have the dumbest name in the history of the world. “My name is Walton, so I’ll call the store Wal-Mart.” Really? And yet he became so rich that just six of his descendants are worth more today than the combined net worth of 30 percent of our nation. That’s right, a tiny company begun in 1962 with an idiotic name and a drab logo and an unimaginative color scheme became the most successful retail empire in the history of the world in less than 30 years.
And they never bothered to change the name or the logo.
I meet Chicken Little advertising people every day who squeal, “the sky is falling” over names and colors and logos.
Color is a language. It definitely matters. A little.
Shape is a language. It can contradict or reinforce your choice of colors. Shape matters. A little.
Product and company names are words that carry conscious and unconscious associations. They absolutely matter. But what matters most of all is what matters to the customer.
Customers who buy from your competitors aren’t choosing your competitors because they have better logos. Your problem is something else entirely.
Customers care about things like products and procedures and policies that might affect them. They care about your offers and assurances. They care about the experience you create for them.
Will your prospective customer be glad they chose you? Yes? How are communicating this? What do you offer as evidence? Testimonials are suspect. Bold promises sound like Ad-speak. What are you doing to give your prospective customer real confidence that choosing you is the right thing to do?
You need a consultant because you have a blind spot.
(If you knew what it was, they wouldn’t call it a blind spot.)
You’re on the inside, looking out. It’s hard to read the label when you’re inside the bottle. Your consultant is on the outside, looking in.
If your marketing people talk a lot about colors and logos and layouts, you’re dealing with graphics artists posing as marketing consultants.
If you’re a person who is interested in marketing and would like to expand your skill set, Wizard Academy was built for you, for today, and for the challenges you’re about to face.
Come. It’s time for you to rise up to your full height. You, we, have work to do.
Roy H. Williams
Oct. 24-25 at Wizard Academy: Beate Chelette (left)
was photo editor at Elle Magazine, then became an artist representative and producer for companies like Mercedes Benz and Levis. Finally, Beate sold her celebrity photography business to Bill Gates for millions of dollars.
Wizard Academy is extremely proud to debut Beate’s new class about Leadership in 2013 and beyond. (Just $1,200 for 2 days.) It’s going to be refreshing and awesome. A few free rooms are still available in Engelbrecht House, our student mansion, the weather in Austin is fabulous right now and you need a break. Acadgrads get a 50 percent discount, as always. Take a look.
Got an invention you want to market?
Join Dean Rotbart and David Biondo as they lead a spirited roundtable discussion that includes Steve Ellenburg, co-creator of the Wrist Rocket Slingshot – now celebrating its 60th anniversary – and Homer Hudson Hillis, Jr., who co-owns and operates HHH Enterprises. If you’ve got an idea for an invention you’d like to market, you won’t want to miss this fast-paced edition of Monday Morning Radio.
Tomorrow – Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2012, is the official release day of Pendulum. My co-author, Michael, is in charge of promoting the book – including special offers – interviews – traveling – all the hard stuff, and he told me that if you click the image of the book on the left, you’ll be taken to a cool and rewarding place. When I looked at the link page he gave me, there was nothing on it. He said there would be cool stuff on it when YOU clicked it, though. Give it a shot. Let’s see what Mike came up with.