The Brand Brothers #06 – How Everyday People Make Superstar Brands

Bill: Lorenzo, do you have a joke to tell our listeners today? Wait, have we started yet? Okay, wait a second. We have to officially start. Good morning, brother Lorenzo.

Lorenzo: Good morning, brother Bill.

Bill: It’s great to see you today on The Brand Brothers.

Lorenzo: It’s great to be seen.

Bill: Because you know, I woke up today and I said jeez, I’m on a mission from God to make branding great again.

Lorenzo: We’re doing it.

Bill: I feel good about myself because people need this. We’re fighting against nonsense. We really are, aren’t we?

Lorenzo: And the dark side, the forces of evil.

Bill: And fake anything because we’re about truth. We really are, we’re about truth.

Lorenzo: I am especially excited about today’s episode because today, we’re gonna bring it back home. Today’s the everyday, branding for the everyday entrepreneur.

Bill: Yeah. Here’s the thing. By now, the listeners out there-

Lorenzo: Are family.

Bill: Are family, the familia, well the brothers and sisters. They realize that they tune in everyday and they’re listening to branding legends here really. We’re two of the most, I don’t know, brilliant branding people in the world. We come from great branding history and culture and agencies, and we’ve had decades and decades of experience.

Lorenzo: One branding expert and a brown guy.

Bill: Yeah, but the brown guy is a brand savvy guy. Some of them are thinking, “Great for them because they’re geniuses, but what about me?”

Lorenzo: What about me? What about my store?

Bill: Yeah. Just to be serious for a second, alright that was enough. No, just to be serious for a second-

Lorenzo: Absolutely.

Bill: People will say, “You guys know about branding major mass market products.” You’re talking about companies and famous examples around the world, and these companies not only have huge millions and millions and millions of dollar budgets, but they also can hire the smartest people in the world. They can hire real agencies and branding and marketing professionals. A person will say, “I can’t do that. It’s just me, I’m just starting out.”

Lorenzo: Right.

Bill: The most important, if there’s anything … This is a takeaway for today. At every single show, we go from now on, it’s that this kind of branding is for everyone.

Lorenzo: Great branding.

Bill: It’s for everyone.

Lorenzo: Great branding is for everyone.

Bill: It really is. I know it to be true. I’m not just saying it to be nice. I can drive down the streets, the blue highways of America, and I go to small businesses everywhere and see them, and you see some of the most incredible creative branding expressions where they follow all of these rules and they create truly great brands. They create dominate brands in their market area, which might be their local town or their city, or their county, or their region, but they create wonderful amazing brands that make them number one in their category.

Lorenzo: That’s why today’ episode is Everyday People Making Everyday Brands.

Bill: Yeah. Yes. How about Everyday People Making Great Brands?

Lorenzo: Everyday People Making Great Brands.

Bill: Yeah. This isn’t just talk. We’ve got some examples here, right?

Lorenzo: Let’s kick it off.

Bill: One of the reasons, by the way, is because when you own a business and you put your heart and soul and creativity and your money and you’re a real entrepreneur, you know more about your business, you know more about your creativity, and you believe in what you’re doing more than just about anybody. When you have that kind of belief, it spawns creativity. You listen to your customers, and it doesn’t cost you anything to come up with an idea. I was thinking about this because people ask me all the time, how can I do it? Just an example of my town in Connecticut where I used to live, right Lorenzo?

Lorenzo: Yeah, of course.

Bill: And you’ve got some, right?

Lorenzo: Best lobster roll ever.

Bill: Driving down the street in my town in Connecticut, there’s 27 pizza places. Every pizza is called Tony’s Pizza, New Haven Pizza, something pizza, this pizza, that pizza, Magical Pizza. Then there was one and I think it was called Pinocchio’s. What it said was … It was just another name, it was cute, but he said, “Real brick oven baked pizza.” Pow. It’s a little thing, and you’ve heard about brick oven pizza before, but if all the other pizza places have no differentiation and one said, “The pizza that’s made in real brick ovens,”-

Lorenzo: That’s the one I want.

Bill: That’s a difference. That’s a dominant selling idea.

Lorenzo: Right.

Bill: What does he do when he has that idea and he says, “That’s my vision, that’s my difference, that’s my brand”? When you walk into Tony’s the first thing you see is a huge oven. You can see into the oven and there’s flames inside. There’s all kinds of things, there’s everything inside. His grandmother is getting warm inside, no. It’s amazing. You see the brick oven and it smells like a brick oven. Then he’s got all kinds of tablecloths and things that make it feel like it’s old fashioned Italy and this big wooden pallet standing up. It was the simplest way to differentiate a brand.

Lorenzo: In your mind’s eye, you’re thinking, “Am I gonna order Pizza Hut today?” Then when you say “real brick oven”, there’s a story.

Bill: Absolutely.

Lorenzo: I can imagine myself, maybe I’m on a date, maybe I’m unwinding, but I can imagine looking at the brick oven and watching my pizza get made.

Bill: Right. The brick oven is a difference, but it’s also … We’re gonna learn as we talk more about how you do these things. You’ll find that the best ideas are always very specific. Specific is terrific. That’s a little micro script. Never forget that. Brick ovens, also it’s visual. I can visualize a brick oven. I can smell it, I can imagine it. Then when I walk in, you walk into the brand when you walk into that.

Lorenzo: You put yourself in their story.

Bill: Yes, but when you walk in, all the things you expect the brand to be surround you. Physically, it aligns with his message, and he delivers on his message by doing all these consistent things around being the real brick oven pizza place. That was just one little example. He was the most popular place. Everybody went there, right?

Lorenzo: I’m hungry just hearing about it.

Bill: Well, okay.

Lorenzo: I’ve got one. For those that have seen my mugshot on Google, my beard gets very unwieldy and once a year I grow my mop out. In order to tame it, I go to the coolest barber there is, I think. I have a big guy crush on him, not as big as you, Bill. There’s a guy named Chuck and he has a barbershop called The Traveler’s Barbershop. What I love about this is that the guy’s got two chairs where he’ll cut your hair in an airstream. You book online, you show up to the airstream, or he might take the airstream somewhere, to an event, to a concert, and you just show up and boom, you’re in the chair.

Bill: You get a haircut.

Lorenzo: You get a haircut. The Traveler’s Barbershop, it’s so cool in there. I’m in an airstream and I think, “I’ve never been in a barbershop like this.”

Bill: An airstream or a hairstream? You know what?

Lorenzo: You’re welcome, Chuck. You can rebrand. See? It’s so easy.

Bill: Okay. He’s in an airstream.

Lorenzo: He’s in an airstream, everything. You show up, you feel like you’re a part of his traveling brand. You want a drink, he’ll give you a drink. You want a beer, it’s all part of his differentiation.

Bill: Not only that, let’s back up for a second. We say the brand happens when you create a difference, but it’s just an invitation to try my product. When you try it, that’s when the brand happens in the other people’s minds because then it better be a good haircut.

Lorenzo: It’s a great haircut, yes.

Bill: You can have all that cute stuff surrounding it, all that entertainment and all that stuff, but if you go and he gives everybody a crew cut no matter what … Can you leave it long? I want it to look long like, I don’t know, and then get a crew … No it’s gotta be a good haircut. When that happens, then you can’t forget it. You’ll say to someone when someone new comes to town, “Go to The Traveling Barber.”

Lorenzo: You know what’s funny about him is that part of the name Traveler’s Barbershop kind of denotes I’m part of the adventure. One of the stories I have is that he recommended, when I was finishing my book, he recommended I go to this place in west Texas called Marfa, which is in the middle of nowhere, it’s right on the border of Mexico. Because he was The Traveling Barber, I believed him. I said, “I gotta go check this place out.” He has taken his airstream to that place. All of a sudden, his credentials for recommending that I got travel somewhere went up. I said, “Hey, this guy’s legit. He’s The Traveling Barber. Come on, I gotta believe this guy.”

Bill: If I had that barbershop, because they have Photoshop nowadays. Imagine if you had a little airstream in all these unusual places.

Lorenzo: You’d put it on the top of the Eiffel Tower?

Bill: I’d have it at the top of Everest. I mean come on, seriously.

Lorenzo: Are you kidding me?

Bill: Why not? Everybody climbs Everest now. Have you seen that?

Lorenzo: I’d say every Tuesday I’m outside the White House. Just go to the White House, I’ll be there on Tuesday.

Bill: Yeah. He could be anywhere. He could be floating down the Mississippi, but it is a traveling barber and you get a great haircut.

Lorenzo: Absolutely.

Bill: Okay. I’m still back in my hometown in Madison.

Lorenzo: Let’s go back to Connecticut, friends.

Bill: I knew somebody. She went to massage school. Everybody likes massage. I believe that if everybody had a massage, there would be no more war.

Lorenzo: Right.

Bill: Really. They’d be so relaxed, how could you have a war?

Lorenzo: Yeah, of course.

Bill: No, I mean really. Let’s just wait until … No, okay. Massage is great and it’s one of the fastest growing businesses there are, clinical therapeutic massage. The problem is that it’s pretty hard to differentiate. What happens is people go to massage school, then they put a shingle out and it says, “Sherry Jones, Licensed Massage Therapist,” and it’s a little thing, a little shingle standing up there. She’s got her friends and her family, she goes through that, but it’s hard. She’s got the word of mouth, but she’s not differentiated. Hopefully she’s good and people will tell, but they’ll forget her name kind of thing.

Lorenzo: Right.

Bill: How do you differentiate that? In massage school, they say, “It’s gonna take you a good six months to a year to build up your clientele.” That’s the old fashioned way. Well, Michelle, my wife’s friend, went to massage school and she was opening her practice. She was pretty good, and she told me that … There I was on the table, being a good friend.

Lorenzo: Of course. Supporting your local business.

Bill: I was supporting my local business and she said, “I’m thinking about how I want to name my business.” She said, “I have Native American heritage.” She said, “As an Indian, Indians are very spiritual. It goes back into nature. There’s really an integration with Indians and natural things. We’re the original organic people and all this spirituality is a part of who I am and what I do.”

Lorenzo: Wow.

Bill: She said, “I was thinking of naming my practice Native Palm.”

Lorenzo: Come on.

Bill: I almost stood up on the massage table.

Lorenzo: And said, “Eureka.”

Bill: I’m glad I didn’t, I would’ve been arrested. I said to her, “Michelle, if I ever write a branding book, I’m gonna write about this.” Then she said, “I even have a tagline.” She said, “My heritage is in my hands.”

Lorenzo: Stop, come on.

Bill: Can you imagine that? So she named it Native Palm, my heritage is in my hands, and then when I came back, she started to decorate the place with all kinds of natural Indian, the art and things like that from her heritage. Then she actually started to make lotions and things that were from the southwest and things like that that were very interesting. I said “Yeah, if I ever write a book,” and I did. [inaudible 00:12:13] because it was one of the best brands I’ve ever heard.

It was called Native Palm, my heritage is in my hands. Michelle had more business in the first month than anybody else in town, and the reason was she had this identity, she had a difference, the difference sounded spiritual and interesting, and if you’re Native American, remember, it has to be important, believable. No one could say that they were a Native American massage therapist. She just took something that she had and she turned it into a brand.

Lorenzo: That’s awesome.

Bill: Isn’t that good?

Lorenzo: I love it because you feel like you’re part of her story.

Bill: You do.

Lorenzo: Right? I’m not Native American but I’d go, I feel like I’m kind of taken … It’s part of my cultural expedition to go to her place and get relaxed.

Bill: Yeah.

Lorenzo: Not to double down on the mobile concept, but there’s a good friend of mine, also a Geekdom member, a female entrepreneur who’s a great friend of mine, and she used to own a bike shop. She said, “The problem with bike shops is that they take forever to get your bike fixed. You have to schedule it, yadda yadda.” She said, “I’m going mobile.” She got a franchise for a company called Velofix. They are the mobile bike repair shop. All of a sudden now, you can call them and schedule the van to go to wherever you are, go to your house, go to your work-

Bill: Velofix?

Lorenzo: Velofix.

Bill: There’s the Velofix van?

Lorenzo: Velofix van. It’s big and red and it’s got-

Bill: I’m loving it.

Lorenzo: Even if your bike breaks down, you call them, they’ll come to you to fix your bike. I just thought, what a differentiation. All the other guys you’re booking a week in advance, and these guys will come right to your house. You come out in your pajamas or as we say in San Antonio, in your [chonas 00:14:01]. You come out in your [chonas 00:14:00] and boom, you just give them your bike. I thought, what a great extreme differentiation here in San Antonio. I’ve never seen it before.

Bill: Also, they don’t steal your bike. That’s the best news.

Lorenzo: That’s the best part. They come with the van and they give it back to you.

Bill: They steal a lot of bikes. Around here, a lot of bikes get stolen, but you know what, it’s okay.

Lorenzo: That’s right.

Bill: What I love about that, remember the different pieces and the parts of a brand. One thing is there’s nothing more important than your name. A person’s name is the sweetest sound that they’ve ever heard, is someone’s own name.

Lorenzo: Was that Dale Carnegie?

Bill: Dale Carnegie and a guy named Burt Lance. There’s a whole story about that we can tell another time. We’re gonna get into naming on this show too because naming is phenomenal. Everybody wants, what should I name it? We have a very specific rules and opinions. Imagine that.

Lorenzo: Don’t try this at home until after the episode.

Bill: Velofix is a good name. It’s a real good name.

Lorenzo: Absolutely.

Bill: Sure it is. Velo means bike, fix.

Lorenzo: I like it.

Bill: Then you got the Velofix van.

Lorenzo: Big and red.

Bill: And the Velofix man with a Velofix plan. I mean come on.

Lorenzo: It’s great. I’ve used them, it’s awesome.

Bill: That’s really good. I’m still back in my hometown.

Lorenzo: We’re playing tennis here. We’re playing branding tennis. Back to Connecticut.

Bill: We’re back and forth. There’s one other one that I liked. How many plumbers are there in town? How many electricians? They’re all, again, word of mouth. That’s good, that’s the way to build a business, but one guy decided he wanted to use the power of great branding principles to accelerate his success and his climb up the ladder. This guy called himself the On Time Plumber. All he said was, “The problem with plumbers is they never come when you ask them, they don’t show up the same day, they’re always late. If I just said I was the On Time Plumber and I stuck by that, I could get known as the On Time Plumber.” What do you do? When you decide that’s your USP, I’m the guy that’s on time, that’s a dominant selling idea.

Lorenzo: That’s right.

Bill: Then what do you have to do? The first thing he did around the brand is on his truck he paints all these pictures of there he is, and he’s pointing to his watch, the On Time Plumber. When he answers the phone he goes, “Hello? The On Time Plumber.”

Lorenzo: I want to talk about a sub principle of this guy’s brand because you talk about it in your book. I say this for all of our family listening, there’s an inherent danger in making a bold claim like that.

Bill: Well yes.

Lorenzo: Because if you don’t do it …

Bill: That’s what I was gonna say. Just like at RackSpace. If we said we have fanatical support, we’re gonna commit-

Lorenzo: You better answer that phone.

Bill: To answering on the first ring, you’d better do it. It’s the same thing with the On Time Plumber. On Time is a relative thing. If the guy gets there five or ten minutes, but plumbers come a day late or they don’t even show up right?

Lorenzo: That’s right.

Bill: This guy calls up and he says, “I’m finishing mine up, but I’m gonna be there within 10 minutes,” it’s fine, but he’s the On Time Plumber. When he shows up on time, that’s the thing. You’ve got to commit to it, but that’s committing to success in your business.

Lorenzo: That’s right, but Bill, tell our family here because you have a sweet poetic line about how nothing hastens about making a false claim.

Bill: Oh yeah. This is what [inaudible 00:17:27] used to say. Nothing destroys you faster than great advertising for a lousy product.

Lorenzo: If he were to say the online plumber but he shows up two days late, it would accelerate his demise.

Bill: People would be so ticked off. They’d call up and people get mad. They talk about it. It would be awful. For example, you talk about how great your beard is, your hairline. If things are lousy, what happens is a lot of people try it. A lot of people are expecting that you’re gonna solve their problem. They get burned, and then they don’t like you anymore. It will accelerate. Good advertising for a bad … Nothing will make you go out of business faster than great advertising for a bad product, so you’ve got to perform. This is always at the foundation of everything.

Lorenzo: That’s our takeaway of the day.

Bill: People think that clever advertising words can make you successful. No, they absolutely cannot. They can make you more famous quicker, they can make you memorable so you can tell your friends, marketing helps sales, all good, but when they try the product, it has to be great. [inaudible 00:18:41], that was the most important thing he would say.

Lorenzo: Nothing hastens your demise faster than making a false claim.

Bill: He would tell clients all the time, there’s nothing you can do that’s better than proving your product. Prove your product every single day. That’s the best advertising you can have.

Lorenzo: The online plumber is just so easy to refer to. It’s so easy to tell someone else about it.

Bill: In these names and in these dominant selling ideas, remember they tell you a promise. It’s a specific promise of something that you want that you can remember. Another one was when I moved to Florida. I moved to Florida because Groucho Marx said, “I’m wanted in every state except my own.” I needed a dry cleaner and down the street was Mario’s Cleaner, and Paradise Cleaner, and Marvel Cleaners, and then there was one that was called Same Day Cleaners.

Lorenzo: Boom, there it is.

Bill: Can anything be better than that?

Lorenzo: No. It’s branding mana.

Bill: I walked in and I said, “You really mean same day?” You walk in, you give them the clothes, they say, “Yes. Would you like them by 4:00, sir?”

Lorenzo: Come on.

Bill: They’re good, right?

Lorenzo: That’s great.

Bill: This is everyday people differentiating. Lorenzo, what about some of the ones that started out as tiny brands but they got so successful they became big national brands? How about the shirt company?

Lorenzo: Oh, great example. Tell our family.

Bill: Oh, you want me to tell them about it?

Lorenzo: Yeah, absolutely. I’ll start it off. Of the two of us, there’s one of us that you’ll never find in pants and a long shirt, which is name rhymes with Morenzo. The whole idea of wearing a collared shirt to me is very upsetting.

Bill: A collared shirt.

Lorenzo: A collared shirt. When I do wear it, I don’t like tucking it in. I don’t like the whole thing. Then came a company to the rescue called UNTUCKit.

Bill: UNTUCKit. I bet our brand family are out there have actually probably heard or even seen. The guy’s on TV now selling UNTUCKit, but he started as a little tiny company.

Lorenzo: Right.

Bill: His only difference was, and it happened to me. I’m like 6’4″, 6’5″, but I’ve shrunk because you shrink when you get old. I’m now like 5’8″. What are you gonna do? I hit a fence once landing a parachute. The thing was, all the guy said, he knew everybody was wearing their shirts outside their pants. I’d get shirts and want to wear them outside, but you get a shirt, there’s nothing worse than when the shirt hangs down to your knees. It looks ridiculous.

Lorenzo: And it’s flappy.

Bill: It’s flappy and it’s also got the shape like it should be tucked in but it’s not. The guy says, “Shirts designed to be worn untucked.” That’s their tagline. You don’t have to be clever. Shirts designed to be worn untucked.

Lorenzo: Go to Silicon Valley, go to any tech co-working space. You’ll sell it out. It also reminds me of Dollar Shave Club. Come on. There I was going to the grocery store every other week paying $7-10 for three razors. It used to piss me off all the time. Then these guys came along, Dollar Shave Club. Boom, in the mail, here you go. Then they got bought by Gillette for like a gagillion fafillion dollars.

Bill: Right, but you see, these weren’t started on $500 million budgets, and they weren’t started nationally. They were started this little guy in his garage. Anybody can do that. UNTUCKit, so many of these ideas are … Listen, never overlook the obvious, folks. So many of these ideas were so obvious. The naysayers come out and say, “Oh, it’s so obvious. Someone’s already thought of it.” Well you know what? They haven’t thought about it, or if they have, they’re not gonna do it just quite the way you’re gonna do it.

Lorenzo: That’s what I was just about to say.

Bill: You would be amazed at how many billions and fortunes were made by just doing the obvious. Then everybody says, “Why didn’t I think of that?” Shirts designed to be worn untucked. They’re cut just right, it’s the right length, they’ve got a little notch thing on the side. They’re great. I was actually going to think of a brand that I call Can’t Tuck It because guys like me, you just can’t tuck your shirt in.

Lorenzo: I think that’s the mumu, Bill. They already invented that. It’s the mumu.

Bill: I can’t tuck it. I’ve gotta have a Can’t Tuck It. What’s another one? Boston Chicken. How about everybody’s heard of Yeti coolers.

Lorenzo: Yes.

Bill: Right?

Lorenzo: Made from NASA material or something crazy like that, right?

Bill: No, but they talk about an obvious thing. They made coolers cool. There’s no pun intended.

Lorenzo: What a notion.

Bill: No, there is pun intended. What can be a more … They differentiated a cooler. They said the cooler … Cooler is a throwaway thing. You bought a cooler, you forgot about a cooler. They started talking about a cooler like it was the most amazing thing in the world. Then they did another important thing. They decided to make it expensive because they turned a cooler into an aspirational brand so that not everybody could afford it, but there were enough people that could. The people that could always said, “Jeez, they inspire. I want to have a Yeti cooler.”

Lorenzo: Yeah. It’s a luxury cooler.

Bill: Luxury cooler category. It’s an LCC.

Lorenzo: You heard it here first, folks.

Bill: Luxury cooler category. But then what do they do? They had an idea. Then they used the great brand principles. They started using [inaudible 00:24:36] with great micro scripted taglines that I can remember. They said … Wait, what did they say? They said, “Built stronger, holds ice longer.”

Lorenzo: I like that.

Bill: They had lines like that, and they had all these branded phrases that they use. They succeeded mightily, but they were a little tiny company making coolers. Who knew? This is what happens when you use the real brand principles that you’re gonna learn only here with The Brand Brothers and not the principles of fake branding used by the nefarious forces of evil.

Lorenzo: Yeah, we hate them.

Bill: We do hate them.

Lorenzo: We actually have a blacklist.

Bill: We’re doing battle against them.

Lorenzo: We have a blacklist that we keep score, folks. If you want to turn one in, email us. Go to our website.

Bill: Yeah. Think of some others, Lorenzo.

Lorenzo: The one-

Bill: What about the dating company that you like?

Lorenzo: Oh my gosh. When I was at RackSpace, one of my favorite customers was a dating site, but in order to make it dramatic, I’m not gonna tell you the name first. I’m just gonna describe what I went through mentally when I saw it. I said, “Wait.” There’s what I thought were just the normal dating websites, and then there’s, I’m single and I own a horse, and I want to meet someone else who’s single and owns a horse. This was two women in Austin that created this amazing company. I’ll never forget when I went to their website, they had their superlative claim on the website, “The number one equestrian community.”

Bill: Are these women that wanted to go out on a date with a horse?

Lorenzo: No, no. I think those are illegal.

Bill: There’s people like that too, you know.

Lorenzo: I think there’s watch lists for that.

Bill: There’s the pony people. You don’t want to go there, no. This is a family show.

Lorenzo: What’s so brilliant is I thought to myself, they had an online company, they had a very successful business, and then when I went back and evaluated it I thought, if you own a horse, you are not poor. How much does it cost to feed those things?

Bill: Oh sure. Not only that, if you call it equestrian versus a horseback rider.

Lorenzo: Yeah, yeah. Horse singles.

Bill: Nobody even knows what an equestrian is unless you’re rich enough to have a horse.

Lorenzo: That’s right, you’re in the club. To me, it was so brilliant. Everything about their website reinforced, even their advertisements … There were advertisements for things like Buddy hay feeders.

Bill: Buddy hay feeders?

Lorenzo: Yeah, but that was advertising proudly on the equestrian singles website. These guys owned their niche, but it was such a simple idea. If you had said, “Lorenzo, come up with a competitor to or eHarmony,” I would’ve been like, “I don’t know.” Boom, now you’ve got Farmers Mingle and Christian Mingle, and J Date. You’ve got everything now.

Bill: What these people did is they went narrow. That’s one of our principles that I wish we’d invented this, but a great branding titan invented this line. “There’s riches in niches.” That’s a micro script, but the idea that specializing, especially today when things are going so much competition, markets are so big, that one of the ways to seek fame fortune and success is to specialize because instinctively, people know that specialists are good at what they do.

Lorenzo: Right.

Bill: There’s another principle here too, one of our great principles, which is that when you own an idea like the gold medal, I won the gold medal in something, this is the person that owns the idea of equestrian singles, then people attribute all kinds of other great qualities to you or implied, like you say. These are sophisticated people, they’re probably people with money, they’re people that like what I like. This is not your average person in someplace that-

Lorenzo: Yeah.

Bill: Equestrian Singles, it does all that without having to say it because it’s simple.

Lorenzo: What about-

Bill: Can I talk about eHarmony for a second since you brought that up?

Lorenzo: Absolutely.

Bill: I love eHarmony. I can’t say it, but I love it.

Lorenzo: eHarmony.

Bill: eHarmony. I love eHarmony because like you said, there was, they were huge, they did everything. Who needed someone else to come out? eHarmony came out and they decided that when you went to, you got a date.

Lorenzo: Right.

Bill: In eHarmony, what was that guy? Dr. Richard somebody? Spock?

Lorenzo: I don’t know, but I trusted him.

Bill: Dr. Phil? Who’s the guy that runs that thing?

Lorenzo: I don’t know, but he has glasses.

Bill: He looks like a goober. He looks like your Uncle Goober.

Lorenzo: He’s the dating Mr. Rogers.

Bill: He is, isn’t he? He’s such a goofball. You gotta trust him. Dr. Neil something something. Who knows? What they said at eHarmony is, what do people really want? They don’t want to just get a date. The women that come to us say they want to get married.

Lorenzo: Right.

Bill: Their positioning was, we’re the one that gets you married.

Lorenzo: It’s genius.

Bill: They owned it.

Lorenzo: You know what I love about them? We talked about this before the show, is that they actually pivoted. At one time, their claim was we’re the most scientific, but to your point, they realized nobody cared about that.

Bill: No, no, no, wait a second. The promise was, remember, people don’t say, “I want to go there because they’re scientific.” Scientific is a reason to believe that they’re going to get me married.

Lorenzo: That’s right.

Bill: You have to have a proposition and then a reason to believe you can do it.

Lorenzo: Then it became the facts of the difference.

Bill: No, but you know what they did? Remember, in the commercial, first of all-

Lorenzo: They got scientists.

Bill: Here’s Julie, Mary, Joey, and here’s Dominic that married Dawn, and here’s Zoey that married Zach, and they always show the couples together, and they’re so happy, but it was all, eHarmony’s gonna get me married. Here’s what they did. Then they had, here’s why you should believe us because we have a test, 29 areas of compatibility. Do you remember that?

Lorenzo: Yeah, and 29 scientists that are back there creating it.

Bill: It wasn’t 20, it was 29 areas. I always said, “This thing had to have been invented by a woman because the guys I know have one area of compatibility.” Honestly, come on. It’s one thing, I don’t know.

Lorenzo: I’m way more sophisticated than that.

Bill: Okay, so maybe two, but 29 different compares of compatibility. I can just see. They get to number 17, can you make a bed? Oh my god, that was 17. Would you help me with the dishes? No, seriously.

Lorenzo: I would rank highly. I have Pinterest boards for everything, which makes me very sophisticated. I would have a Pinterest board just for how to make a bed.

Bill: Let me say this though and in all fairness, I’m not just saying this, women are way more complicated, I think. I think they’re more analytical in a lot of ways than men are, and they think about all these things. Men are just sort of the single focused thing. Steak, eat it. Watch sport. Beer, I drink it. You see? But women are much more sophisticated. I could see 29 areas of compatibility.

Lorenzo: There’s actually an off shoot today, which I think is brilliant, called Bumble. I’m not sure about-

Bill: Bumble? Is this for bees?

Lorenzo: It sounds like it. I feel like they could do better on the name, but what’s brilliant about it is that they’ve carved out their own niche, which is like Tinder. Tinder you swipe left and right, but what this one does differently is the woman has to initiate the first engagement.

Bill: Really?

Lorenzo: You can’t do anything until she sends you the message and says hi, which I thought was brilliant because you knew it was designed by a genius woman entrepreneur because they’re trying to filter out the creeps.

Bill: Yeah.

Lorenzo: I feel like when you put the woman in control of the initial engagement, she gets to decide, maybe I’ll pass on this one. What I love about it is that it’s knowing their audience. What do your customers really want? The customer that joins that is really a woman that says, “I’m trying to narrow down my creep factor, and I’m gonna be in charge of it,” whereas with eHarmony, I want to get married. This is my number one concern.

Bill: That’s the promise. eHarmony is the one that gets you married. That’s the dominant selling idea.

Lorenzo: Which is brilliant.

Bill: Yeah, the reason to believe. Bumble, huh? See, I look at it because that’s another way for a guy to fail. Lorenzo, I could see … Next time I come and I see you sitting in your car, you look a little bit down, Lorenzo, what happened? Did you lose your job? Eh, I got filtered out by Bumble.

Lorenzo: I’ll tell you what, if there’s anything to be said about online dating it’s that it’s just as hard as in the real world. You’re a very handsome man, but our true magic is in person when we’re charming.

Bill: Are you serious? Really? You really think so? You like my look?

Lorenzo: You’re very handsome.

Bill: I know. I work for you, Lorenzo.

Lorenzo: I have a thing for east coast Jewish branding guys. That’s just how I am.

Bill: Oh. Lorenzo, don’t give up all the mystery surrounding me.

Lorenzo: I’m sorry.

Bill: Okay.

Lorenzo: Everyday brands, great brands by everyday people.

Bill: The point is, folks, I’ve seen the biggest agencies, and the biggest budgets, and the biggest companies come up with the stupidest nonsense you have ever seen. We started out with The Power of And. You know something? I want to get sued. Actually, I shouldn’t say that. This is one of the biggest companies on the planet, this is the biggest agency, biggest budgets in the world, they did focus groups all around the world, and they come up with The Power of And, which is the power of nothing.

Lorenzo: That’s right.

Bill: It fails every single test.

Lorenzo: The Same Day Cleaner is mopping the floor with their marketing materials.

Bill: I like that. They’re mopping the floor with my shirt though. That’s the one thing, I came and I caught them. The other thing, seriously … Look at the biggest banks in the world. Banks are terrible at doing this. I just saw one for US Bank. It says, “The power of possible.” What does that even mean?

Lorenzo: Really?

Bill: Occasionally you’ll come around to a bank that did a great job, and we’ll talk about that another time. It’s hard to brand and differentiate big companies, but TD Bank, America’s most convenient bank. That’s actually a promise. What they did, just like RackSpace is, they said, “Now we’re going to show it to you.” They tell you, “When you come into our bank, if there’s more than two people in line, we open a new line for you,” stuff like that.

Lorenzo: The banking example reminded me of another hometown favorite here in San Antonio, which is USAA. You go to their website right now, it says, “We proudly serve military members and their families.” Pow. They do other things, but that’s their superlative.

Bill: But it’s also they’ve said that’s their differentiator. They say, “That’s what we’re committed to.” That’s what we stand for. We serve the people who serve.

Lorenzo: And they’re amazing, and their customers are so loyal to them because of that mission. Now, even if you’re an employee and you want to work there, you say, “I’m so inspired by the mission. My dad served in the military, my mom did,” whoever. All of a sudden now, you’ve adopted their story just like that.

Bill: Right. I hope people … The takeaway for today really is that you have to believe. If you believe enough in yourself to have a business, if you believe enough in yourself that you have something to bring to the world, a personal brand, something that you stand for to bring to the world that the world needs, if you believe in it, then please believe that these great differentiating principles are there for anyone who wants to think about it with some of the rules that we talk about. Then just go out and execute. You may not find it the first day. As a matter of fact, RackSpace, it took them three tries. They knew they wanted to differentiate, but it took them the third try when they said, “We’re gonna stand for service in a market that has none.” We’re gonna call it fanatical support.

Lorenzo: Yeah, it was a game changer.

Bill: You just keep trying, keep swinging. A lot of times you’ll hear it from your customers, so listen up.

Lorenzo: Send us your examples. We want to hear them. If you see the shop next door or the company you have is a great example-

Bill: Those are great branding principles.

Lorenzo: Absolutely. Send them over to us. Go to and email us. We want to hear about them.

Bill: You know Lorenzo, that’s the first I’ve heard about us hearing about them. We just crossed the riverfront right there. We’re now going to have audience participation.

Lorenzo: Absolutely.

Bill: I’m loving this, sure.

Lorenzo: Here comes the tidal wave of emails.

Bill: We’re never gonna call you back.

Lorenzo: That’s right.

Bill: We’re never gonna email you, but we wanna-

Lorenzo: The truth is, it’s just gonna be my mom that emails.

Bill: Listen, you look forward to the show. If we go forward with the show, we’re gonna ask people to rate things and brand them. Then we’ll have a little contest, we’re gonna give prizes for the contest.

Lorenzo: Amazing prizes.

Bill: Amazing prizes, seriously. On future shows, we’re gonna talk about … Well, we’ve got so many subjects to talk about. Already into the next season we’re gonna talk about the actual ways that you, if you want to do this thing, if you believe in it, and you say, “I want these brands for me,” we have a whole list of protocols and actual very simple specific kinds of steps you take to get yourself from where you are now to having that differentiated brand.

Lorenzo: We’re gonna break it down, as the rappers say.

Bill: Yeah, I think so.

Lorenzo: We’re gonna break it down. Join us next time.

Bill: Okay.

Lorenzo: Alright.

Bill: The takeaway for the day.

Lorenzo: Is?

Bill: Everybody can be great, have a great brand.

Lorenzo: Boom, there it is. Go out and brand. Go forth and brand, our family.

Bill: Okay, we’re signing off now.

Lorenzo: Cheers.

Bill: See you next time.