Leverage Storytelling to Build Your Brand

Me and Sophie.

Me and Sophie.

Do you know the story of your brand? One of the keys to effective branding is how well you tell your story.

Your brand needs to emotionally connect to your audience. The story of your brand and your company helps build your emotional connection. What is your company all about, what do you stand for and why does that matter to your potential customers?

I think branding is part of who I am. Growing up, I was drawn to TV commercials and wanted to know what went into making them. When I watched the ABC sitcom “Bewitched,” I related most closely not to the stars of the show, the witches, but to husband Darrin Stevens, the ad man.

Later I discovered that I had a knack for writing and creating a brand. I had a successful career in marketing at Philips Lighting, but ultimately decided that I wanted to open a different kind of marketing and communications firm- one that delivered a wide-range of pragmatic, results oriented services to meet CLIENT, not agency, objectives.

I started CMA in 1987. Yes, it was during a recession and my wife and family members often answered the office phones. Our first major campaign was for Philips Lighting and it focused on the benefits of new color corrected, high lumen fluorescent lighting.

I remember one of our earliest campaigns the most vividly. We were hired to explain to chief financial officers in office buildings about the potential savings of switching to energy efficient lighting. First we mailed out a silver dollar in a jewelry box and attached a note that said “Found a buck- maybe we can find more.” Then we sent out magician boxes that churned out a $1 bill and a brochure that explained how more effective energy use could save the CFOs and their companies $1 per square foot in their office buildings. It was an immensely successful campaign that got our client’s phones ringing from across the country!

Based on my background and some of our early success, CMA has developed a niche in the lighting industry. But we don’t rest on our laurels. Over the years, I saw a need among non-profit associations for professional association management, a team that can provide strategic leadership, day to day operations, public relations and conference management. CMA expanded to provide that service and I’m proud to say that Association Management now represents half of our business.

Nearly 30 years after I founded CMA, I can say that we still deliver a wide-range of pragmatic, results oriented services to meet client, not agency, objectives. I’m proud of that. We consider ourselves partners, not just service providers.

What’s the story of your brand?

Need help with your company’s brand? Can we help elevate your story above the competition? Please contact me at jbarnhart@CMASolutions.com or call me at (609) 297-2235.

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