2021 Branding Workbook

Branding for High Dollar Sales Workbook

This 16-page workbook along with the presentation will help you develop a plan of action for your business to brand for high dollar sales. 

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Full Branding Video Transcript

Jason: Good afternoon everyone. Welcome to our Webinar of the Month. Today we’re going to be talking about branding for high end sales. We are joined by Johanna. How are you, Johanna?
Johanna: I’m great. Jason, thank you for having me.
Jason: So one of the reasons we wanted to have this talk today is because the NKBA, they actually had a luxury summit last month and this is one of the outcomes from that. They had sent me one of their highlights of that where they talk about designing for the luxury market house to market to them. And, you know, a topic that we had on club house and we actually had you Johanna on club house. And that was an amazing being. Everybody loved it. And so I reached out to the NKBA to do a CEU and they’re all for it. And so this is a 0.1 CEU for NKBA as well. At the bottom of the screen you’ll see a link where you can get the workbook, make sure you click on that so you can follow along and also use this workbook to help you go through the exercises after this webinar is over. So I’m going to hand it over to Johanna, so she could start talking about branding for high end sales and Johanna take it away.
Johanna: Alright, I’m going to go ahead and just jump right in. Share my screen here. Jason, if you would just let me know if you can see that.
Jason: I can see it.
Johanna: Perfect. Well, good morning and welcome to Branding for High Dollar Sales. My name is Johanna White and I own Design by Jo Brand Design Services. I’ll tell you a little bit more about me and what I do here in a second. But first, what I want to make clear is who this webinar is really for.
Johanna: Aside from the people that Jason sits you down, tie you to a chair, and makes you watch it. If that’s you, I apologize. I guess this webinar is all good for you today. This webinar is for people. If your goal is to attract luxury clients, drive higher margins, be as delightfully expensive as you deserve to be. Stop under, charging and earn what you’re worth and appeal to the high end of the market that you are in. I was really thrilled when Jason called and asked me to teach on this subject because I know as a fellow business owner that when you charge what you’re worth, you do better work and you raise the bar for business standards of excellence across the board. So just to recap today’s webinar is for you. If you want to attract luxury clients, drive higher margins, be as delightfully expensive as you deserve to be. If you want to stop under charging, earn what you’re worth and appeal to the high end of the market that you are in. Hi there. I am. Johanna, and I specialize in premium brand identity design. I take businesses that are the best at what they do, and I make them look like it so that they stand out from the noise, attract more of their ideal clients, and grow their businesses by driving higher margins. Or to reference today’s title, High Dollar sales. I help businesses go from best kept secret to brand name by designing premium brand identities with high impact touch points such as custom websites so compelling that our clients doubled their revenue the first month after launch. We’ve had clients with personal brand photos, so great for coaching client and so perfectly aligned with their authentic self that they received immediate rave reviews, comments and requests to work with them. We’ve helped with high impact business cards. So amazing that people come up to my clients years later and say, oh my gosh, I remember your business card is so cool that I still have it on my counter, and I show it to everyone who comes over, which talk about long term marketing value right there.
Johanna: That is one of them. And we have helped clients with touch points like luxury greeting cards so beautifully on brand that customers reach out immediately after receiving a card as a thank you and book additional services. I assist my clients in a large range of branding needs, from messaging and strategy to visual identity to custom websites that convert visitors into customers. I believe that excellence applied across all customer touch points results in brand experiences that matter. One of my recent clients comes to mind as a really great example of the process that I take all of my clients on, and then I’m going to walk you through the journey today of going from best kept business secret to brand name. I’ll show you some actual images from our case study later on in this episode. But for now, I just want to share the gift of her story. My clients owned a company called the Toffee Store. She reached out to me because she knew I helped with brand identity design, and she knew that her toffee brand had to take on a new look and feel if she was going to attract ideal clients. She struggled because she knew in her heart and constantly felt like I have the best toffee in the world. Why doesn’t everyone realize it? Why am I not selling more of it? She wasn’t cutting through the noise. People weren’t buying as much as they could have or should have. She thought she had grand ideas for her business, but she felt like she was stuck. She knew that her toffee would make amazing client and corporate gifts, and she wanted to sell toffee on a larger national scale, join the ranks of well known gifting options like Diva. Personal bias aside, her toffee really is freaking amazing. You can just ask Jason later.
Johanna: I have now been present when multiple people tasted it, and almost without fail, they claim that it’s the best toffee they ever had. But her visual brand at the time had a small town unprofessional feel. Her brand and product photos were dull and unappealing, and her website was cluttered and unclear. She was aware now, though, that until she had a visual brand that lined up with the quality of her product to help her stand out and attract more of her ideal clients, she was going to remain a best kept business secret. When she came to me, I knew exactly how she felt because not that many years ago. I was in her shoes before I learned and implemented what I’m about to share with you today. I was a commodity of a graphic designer charging the same or less as every other designer that I knew of and still frequently getting told that I was too expensive. But when I figured out what I’m about to share with you today and implemented what I learned, I was able to raise my rate for you heard that right, and still close more sales. And I was able to do so almost overnight. So I knew that I could do the same thing for the toffee store, but it was going to take a process. Today. We are going to walk through what that process looks like so that you can do the same in your business. And I know that most of you here watching this webinar are in a service business, not a product. But I’m sorry, the toffee photos are just so much more deliciously appealing than some of my more service based clients. So we’re going to use her as the case study and you will still be able to graph the gist of it. So my questions today that we are going to solve is what is it that keeps talented people like you stuck in the world of invisibility and undercharging? The problem, as I’ve found it to be, is that most businesses have the mindset of service providers instead of being a solution provider, and people pay commodity prices for services, but they pay premium prices for solutions. So as most of you are in the interior design space or the home remodeling space for the home building space, are you positioning yourself just as a service provider?
Johanna: If so, listen close, because I’m going to teach you how to be a solution provider so that people will pay premium prices for you. One of the things we’re going to do here today is to begin to identify the unique solution that you provide so that you can charge for it. So what does branding have to do with that? Why does Jason call me? Why is it not someone else talking to you here today? I have found that many businesses work hard, have an amazing product or service, but oftentimes their visual brand does not line up with the quality that they offer. And worse, it does nothing to draw attention to the solution that they provide. Remember, people pay premium prices for solutions. Because of this, those businesses struggle to attract the attention of their ideal client. So they remain a best cap business secret, constantly undercharging taking every job they can get, whether it maximizes their potential or not, whether it keeps them up all hours of all the weeks or not. Say, yeah, in the chat. If any of this is sounding familiar, that is, if Jason has been able to chat, he might not have, in which case, just hear. Yeah! So today we are here to help you figure out how to stop being that. So I’m a very visual person as a brand designer, unsurprising. And I thought I would kind of sum up the problem that we’re solving today in a visual nutshell, using two delicious sushi places as an example. The place on the last year is an amazing artists. He makes delicious Sushi. He’s a definition of a hole in the wall, like you can’t even tell if it’s open. It was a pizza place. They didn’t even redecorate it. They make some of the best issue I’ve ever had in my life, but they’re getting severely underpaid and underappreciated. They barely charged anything for the sushi, and still the boots are empty. They have no branding to speak of and no one knows about them. A mere 30 minutes away across town is the Red Ginger. They have amazing branding applied with excellence across all the touch points. They’re building the interior design, their menu design. And I’ve eaten in both places actually in the same weekend.
Johanna: In actuality, the Red Gingers food is just a step above average. But because they branded themselves exclusive and expensive, stop, they have a two hour wait on any given night. If you can even get on the list. And the food time food, there is five times the price of the sushi joint on the left. So on the left, we have our best kept business secret, which may or may not be you today. But if you’re tuned into a webinar and branding for high dollar sales, there’s a good chance if you look in the mirror, this is you and we are here today, that’s not you. To make sure that is not you for very much longer today, we will discuss the first three steps in my process of branding for high dollar sales. Step one, know your value. Step two, show your value. And step three, always find a way to add more value. And without further ado, let’s get to it. So step one, know your value. If you as a business don’t know why you are worth more, then you won’t believe that you’re worth more. That sink in for a second. You got to know it before you can believe it. And if you don’t believe that you are worth more, your customers certainly won’t believe it either. And you will be stuck charging low prices forever. So sure, that sounds great. Know your value. I’m not just here to tell you high level, great sounding Nuggets. I’m here today to help you do this. How do you know your value? Start by identifying your X factor. What is your X factor? I like to define it as what makes you special. And here are a few ways that you can identify your X factor. One. Ask yourself, what problem do you solve better than anyone? Who do you solve it for? So who is your ideal client? What solution are you providing that people might pay a premium to receive? Remember, solution provider, not service provider. What is something that you do naturally that your clients comment on? Like, oh, you did this for me and you made it look so easy. And to you, it was like, no big deal. But it’s not everywhere. Not everyone in your industry is doing it. What is something that you can do to improve your clients live or their experience?
Johanna: Remember again, to think about what you offer in terms of the solution. So let’s dive into the first question a little deeper. What problem do you solve better than anyone? To identify the problem, you can ask yourself, what is my ideal client want more than anything in the world? What holds your client back from success in their life and in their business? What do they struggle with on a daily basis? And you can go deep here. Our brains are hardwired to seek out. Things that help us survive and thrive, keep us alive. And so if you can tie the problem that you solve to survival or to thriving at life, you will connect with your ideal clients on it core level. For example, as a brand designer, one of the problems that I solve is invisibility or being a best kept business secret. I solve that problem through one of my X- factors, which is designing a consistent, high impact brand with excellence across all touch points so that they can have the solution of standing out from the noise, looking as good as they are and charging what they’re worth. I’ve now said a couple of times mentioned your ideal client. Well, who is your ideal client? You need to identify who you want to attract. Don’t be afraid to admit that you are ideally positioned to serve one type of clients better than the rest. Niching can be an excellent task of being the expert in the smaller field, and being the expert is an excellent task to charging top dollar for your services. A few ways to identify your ideal client and ask yourself these questions, one. Who are you best positioned to serve? Like, who are you already around? What problems have you already solved for yourself? And you see them in someone else and you go, oh, I can help you. I already solved that problem in my business. I can solve it in yours. Or I already designed my ideal home space in my house. I can do it in yours, ask yourself to who is best positioned to get value from what you offer. So who can you take to the next level that will really impact their lives? Three.
Johanna: Who is looking for the premium level of service in your industry and willing to pay high dollar for a VIP experience? For who do you enjoy doing business with the most? And five. Who is best positioned to get maximum return on investment for your level of service once you know your value through the steps that we just talked there, and I believe they’re in your workbook. This is probably not something you’re going to shove out while you’re on the call, but it does need to be take some time, sit down, have some fun with it. Once you know your value, then you need to clarify your brand message to communicate that value quickly and clearly. As one of my favorite authors, Donald Miller, he wrote the book StoryBrand likes to say if you confuse, you lose. Basically, if a client comes and counters your brand and can’t tell in just a few seconds what problem you solve for them and who you solve it for and how to buy it, they’re out and you’re back on the hunt looking for more clients. Here’s an example of what I do with my clients, once we identify their X factor. This is from a coaching client of mine, Cathy. We clarified her message from what it was on the left. The header of her old website was the big, confusing blurb of a paragraph where you had to pick through that there’s no hierarchy, nothing to really tell you quickly what into, clear and concise. She takes your business from stuck to successful. And then underneath that, the subtitle describe a little bit how she does that. But which one of these do you think is going to attract the client who’s ready to pay what she wants to charge for her premium services? Definitely the one on the right. A question that naturally follows this segment on knowing your value and I get asked often is now I’ve done the work, I know my value, I know I’m worth more. But what should I charge? Well, I’m sure you’re going to be super thrilled with a very concise answer that I’m about to give you, which is that pricing for services and especially for design, is often subjective. But the good news is that pricing is about attracting the right client almost as much as anything.
Johanna: If you attract the client who is already expecting to pay top dollar, they’re looking for that luxury service, then you’re not expensive. You can have very high prices, and you are spot on. Once you’re confident that you add more value than anyone else, you will also have an easier time charging for it. A lot of times your pricing comes down to what you have the confidence to ask for. It’s as simple as that, and it’s hard to confidently name your price if you don’t believe in it yourself. If you’re saying some number that you’re in the back of your mind going, oh, my gosh. You can’t believe anyone would pay that. There’s no way I’m worth it. They’re not gonna believe it either. And you’re not going to get it. And you’re probably gonna go back to thinking, Well Done. I’m too expensive. I’m not set up for the luxury market back down to commodity. I go, but what I want to remind you today, or maybe tell you for the first time is that high dollar clients things differently. I want you to realize that there is a whole group of people who choose the more expensive things simply for the significance of owning or buying them. It makes them feel exclusive. It makes them feel good. It makes them feel like they have something that not everyone has. This is why luxury brands exist. Part of charging higher prices, charging for high dollar services is properly identifying your audience. Exclusivity people pay more for scarcity, and also know that not everyone is your client and hold your ground on your pricing. Think of companies like Apple. They’ve got more fans than you can imagine. No one has to convince you that they’re amazing. Unless, of course, you’re a PC fan. And then maybe they have to convince you. But they’ve got more than enough clients. Apple never go on sale their premium prices. They don’t try to justify it. They just say, here’s the new iPhone. And by the way, it’s like $200 and no sale. Why does this matter? Because once you identify and attract your ideal audience, you naturally will get higher close rates, and you’ll get to work with more awesome clients who really appreciate you.
Johanna: Again, just this little note for you, since most of you are in the interior design industry, if you’re waiting until you feel like your designs are way better than anyone else before you raise your prices, don’t. Don’t wait. It’s not about that. In the world of design, especially better is subjective, and there’s no accounting for taste. However, you can always strive to be better in customer service, better at how you make people feel, and you know better at how much you offer them. So let me say that again, prices and the perceived value are often objective. I discovered this when I was doing brand research for Genera Appliance. They were doing a campaign called The New Rich. And during that research, I was digging through images that they said, these appeal to our target audience, the New Rich, like the young, the rebellious versus Bentleys and pearls. And in this research, I found the hamburger ring that totally slipped my mind on what people think is worth it. What’s the hamburger ring you at? On the left is a piece of fine jewelry shaped like a hamburger. Kind of looks like something you would get in the McDonald’s Happy meal, and it’s $8,000. I don’t particularly want a hamburger ring. That’s $8,000. But this designer is so popular that you often can’t get this, it’s sold out. And if a hamburger rings aren’t your liking, you can pay $27,000 for a Lego ring instead. I wanted to be known. I’m not mocking this designer. In fact, I’m pretty proud for she found an audience who wanted to pay for significance. They wanted to pay for real jewelry that looked like everyday objects.
Johanna: She designed it, she charges for it. And because she found her audience, not me. I’m not her audience. I don’t like rings tape like burgers. And if she tried to sell me this spring, I would probably say $8,000. How about, like, 50? I’m just not attracted to this screen. I am not her ideal client. But her ideal client exists. And she has a waiting list a mile long for expensive jewelry that looks like everyday items. That story. The point is, stop waiting till you feel like everybody in the world thinks you’re the very best. Before you raise your prices, know your value, identify your audience, pick your price and go for it. So now you know your value. But does your ideal client perceive it? You may know you’re worth it now, but the rest of the world doesn’t yet. So we’re ready for step two. When it comes to branding, I have learned that what you believe matters. But what you do about what you believe matters even more. If you want to build an iconic brand attack, luxury clients charge high dollar. You first need to know your value, and then you need to show your value through premium brand positioning. So let me just say that one more time. What you believe matters, but what you do about what you believe matters even more. If you don’t believe that you’re worth a high price, then you definitely will not be able to charge one. Even if you already believe that you are worth every Penny, though it’s not enough for just you to know it. You also have to show it. Your ideal clients have to perceive your value, and they do that based on your branding. You can know that you’re worth it. But until you show that you are and take action on what you believe, intentionally position your brand, you will remain a best kept business secret instead of a brand name. So now we are ready for step two in today’s branding for high dollar sales, which is show your value through brand positioning. What is brand positioning? There are more in depth definitions, but for today to keep it simple and applicable, we’re going to focus on the visual side of this definition, which is that brand positioning equals aligning your company with images, thoughts, and emotions that you want to be associated with it.
Johanna: In the minds of your consumer, those are a lot of big words. But think the magazine now that you’ve seen for any big name fashion label. At first glance, the staging items in the photo might seem odd out of place or simply artistic, but in many cases they’re choosing a backdrop of items that already have a strong mental association with luxury in the mind of their consumers. Let me put it a little more modern way, how many of you guys hang out on Tiktok? And if so, have you ever seen or participated in that? Tell me without telling me challenge. Basically, how it works is someone comes on Mix video, says something like, Tell me you work out without telling me you work out also first. And then they plan their camera to a counter absolutely covered in protein powders, workout drinks, etc. And so brand positioning is this Tiktok challenge. Brand positioning is your ideal high paying clients issuing the challenge to you saying, Tell me you’re the best and delightfully expensive without telling me you’re the best. This challenge is brand positioning in a nutshell, but let’s look at it in a little more well known space. Here are some examples of brand positioning for luxury brands in an app, top quality fashion brands have been doing this forever. Other industries have been a little slower to pick up and come along, but it is becoming more widely known as a strategy across the board when it comes to brand positioning. Photo quality matters. Staging items matter locations matter facial expressions. These companies quite literally position their products next to celebrities or items that already have mental Association to luxury in the mind of their consumers. The industry definition and application of brand positioning goes way beyond this, but for simplicity reasons today, thinking of it like this is enough to get you started. Now, I know this audience here today is more in the home spaces. So this is an example of brand positioning done well by a a premium home builder. This is the header of their website. They use an image that’s very clean, well done. This home is on the water, obviously going to be a more expensive property. The items in the photo show some of the value of the home. In the world of interior design, brand positioning may take the form of well staged photos with luxury furnishings, you’re going to see a lot of gold.
Johanna: Let’s face it, you can’t get away from it. That gold is one of the oldest forms of a mental image of luxury, and it’s still used today in that if you’re new to the interior design space and you have not done a home of this magnitude, but you know that you want to serve in this space, start with renderings clean, crisp, clear renderings, and pay attention to the items that you stage into those rendered photos. You can go a long way with a high quality rendering towards showing your value for a premium market. And I know Jason and his team can offer that or can help you learn to do that. I think we even have a webinar just on rendering. So if you’re like, I’m new, I can’t brand position. I don’t have enough yet. Start there to sum up brand positioning. If you want to attract the best, you have to look like the best. Like, attracts like, and people want to hire and work with someone who gets them. So now that you know your ideal client, you can research what they’re currently attracted to and craft your visual brand at the intersection of who you really are, what makes you special and how you want to show up for your audience, what they’re attracted to with what you offer. It’s not enough to just tell them that you understand their style. You need to show them your brand needs to show them. So a question that potential clients often ask me is, how fast does branding work? Translation, they want to know how soon they can hope to see return on their branding investment. Well, to answer that, I’ll show you how. A few years ago I applied everything we just discussed about brand positioning to my own business, and the results were instant. I went from just a portfolio to a well positioned brand, to brand imagery and to luxury brand I used to depend on just a portfolio and to let my clients draw their own conclusions. But I was making them do way too much work. I need to be able to show them on my own brand that I could communicate luxury. And so I did. This image is on the home page of my website. This is my actual business card. And just for fun, spot the brand positioning here. You can call out a few things in the chat, but there are several things in this image alone that associate the mind luxury, from the dripping gold, the marble to the custom painted nails to the arms bracelet.
Johanna: And when I first step was, I created this high impact business card. And they began to be so successful in communicating that I could deliver value rather than just telling people I was showing them. Then I crafted my brand imagery around it. And right after I launched my new website with this carefully positioned brand, I was in a coffee shop and started talking with a gentleman who is also working in the coffee shop. He asked what I did, and I told him a little snippet and handed him my business card. He went back to his computer, came back rushing over five minutes later and said, oh my gosh, your card was so amazing that I had to just go to your website and see what you did. And your website so great line up so well with your brand that I know that you can do what you say you do for your clients. If you can do it for yourself, you can do it for anybody. And I need you to work on several projects. Oh, by the way, I work for Google. So right there I went from normal business cards and a portfolio, and, you know, every brand touch point was different to a crisp, concise, visual brand that communicated my value, and it attracted the clients for me, I didn’t have to do any of the work. I didn’t have to say I do brand design and I can do your brand design. And please tell me what you need. I just gave him my card and it did the rest. Here’s another little section of my website just for fun. Spot the brand positioning again, it’s not hard wanted to part of the reason that I use my own site for an example here today is because I did this so literally I took a representation of my brand, my business card, and place them next to known status symbols, like these red bottom Louboutin. And like I said once I did that, clients no longer wondered whether I could do the same for them. If you don’t say it about yourself and show it about yourself, you can’t expect your customers to know it about yourself. English. No, but hopefully just memorable enough that you’ll take this point away from here today, because first you have to believe it. You have to know your value. You have to talk about it, but then you have to show them. So just telling them that you’re great. Use brand positioning and show them when it comes to your visual brand, I want to remind you about one very important factor in getting massive return on the time and money that you invest in building it. That is brand consistency.
Johanna: A brand is only as good as how and where you use it. Brand guidelines, something that I do for my clients can help with this. But once you have brand guidelines, you as the business owner have to follow them. You have to use the brand consistently on all customer touch points on your website, on social media, et cetera. And then it works because consistency builds familiarity. It builds emotions in the minds of the consumer that say they know luxury and they know me and I want to work with them. I believe that excellence across all touch points equals brand experiences that matter. I’ve mentioned the word touch points a few times today, so I just want to define that a bit for you. Brand touch points can be defined as any interaction and exposure that a consumer can have with your brand. Your touch points happen every time a potential customer comes in contact with your brand, before, during, or after they purchase a service or a product from you. When it comes to touch points, you may not have considered their importance beyond the more obvious ones, like your website or social media, but your job is not done. When the sale is closed, you’re packaging your thank you card testimonial requests proposals more on that in a second. They’re all a big part of your overall brand and the way you are perceived by current and potential customers. Not all potential touch points carry equal value for all companies. Depending on your industry, product or service. Customers may interact with certain touch points in your business. That would not matter at all for a different business. If you need help getting your ideas flowing on what touch points might carry the greatest return on your investment as you’re working on improving your brand as they’re identifying your value and learning how to show it. I have a touch point checklist that I give to my clients and I’m going to make sure that you are able to get it here today as well. It’s a free checklist. You can go to my website designed by Jostudio.com Checklist, or you can grab your phone, open your camera app, and scan this QR code and download it straight from here. Not all potential touch points carry equal value, which is why this is just to help start getting your juices flowing on which ones you can tackle first.
Johanna: So speaking of touch points, I wanted to highlight one potential one today that can make a huge difference if you’re a designer or a contractor wanting to sell high dollar services. I love sharing this one, and Jason can confirm he has already implemented it, as have several other people I’ve talked to on his team and it had immediate results that pro tip is proposals. If you are still trying to show your value to a potential client with nothing more than a line item estimate, you are missing out on a huge way to position your brand as a premium service provider. Proposals are a fantastic way to show not just tell. Once I started sending proposals out in place of traditional quotes, I was able to charge three times my previous rates and still close more sales than before. I love an online software called Better Proposal. This is a QR code. Again, grab your phone, open your camera app. Go straight there. Start their free trial. If you’re using a line estimate instead of a proposal, you want to change that today. It’s a very easy action step that you can take probably out of everything we’re going to talk about today. It’s the quickest and easiest way to just get started on branding for your high dollar sales. And once you start using proposals, they make an amazing touch point for your visual brand to show up to your clients. Enough about proposals. Just do it. Trust me, you’re going to want to step three in branding for high dollar sales is always find a way to add more value, but in a way that your customers want. So I’m not talking about endless freebies that are full of fluff that you’re just using to get emails, but don’t actually help. I’m not talking about endless Facebook Live that also full of fluff or SEO keywords and aren’t actually teaching people something, aren’t giving them action. I’m not talking about any of that. A business that serves their customers in a way that they want more of will be around for the long haul. Fall in love with your customers instead of with your products or services. And then if the industry pivot is trends, pivot your pivot as well, and you will be one of the iconic brands of your industry when it comes to adding more value, I want you to create an aspirational brand and then live up to it.
Johanna: What do I mean by that? I mean, I’m not here as a brand designer to help anyone with smoke and mirrors. I’m not here to fool people or to make someone look amazing if they’re not actually delivering value, and you shouldn’t be either. Once you begin to believe that you’re worth it and you show your value and your clients believe that you’re worth it, they’re going to be willing to pay what you ask, but you won’t feel good about receiving those prices. If you’re not delivering what you promise and you won’t be around very long, the word will get out, reviews will spread. They’re going to feel scammed. That is not what brand positioning is for. It is for taking someone who is great and making them look great. But it is not for taking something cheap and packaging it as something worth more. Create an aspirational brand. Live up to it because living up to your own brand built an audience of raving fans who will use your service again and again. At the beginning, I mentioned doing this three step process for a client called the Toffee Store. Now I want to show you exactly what putting those three steps in place for her company looks like. We started with a visual brand redesign, took her from a small town vibe to someone who truly shows up as an international Gourmet corporate gifting option. We did a complete rebrand, and now they look delightfully. Check like the perfect amount of expenses that you want to see in a Gourmet gift. Next, we elevated their brand photos to show their value. I tell my clients over and over again, don’t lean on stock photos or unstaged, poorly lit product photos or terrible renderings in your case to show your value. This was the coffee store on the left before these images were actually on their website. If you look close, it’s no surprise that they were not selling a lot of toffee that gets box down there at the bottom. I personally think it kind of looks like it just threw up the content. But the thing was, I knew her toffee was amazing, so I marked down there with my crew, spent a whole day staging styling, making sure that the lighting was accurate and putting props and things like marble backdrops and plate into the photos. And now the most common thing that people say when they see her photo is hold up. I got to give me some toffee right now. So when you use well done brand photos to show your value, it will sell what you you offer.
Johanna: You won’t even have to try. Next, we did a custom website rebuild for her from start to finish. With improved user experience, we took her newly clarified brand messaging on the left, her old website. She used to say that a simple peer and delicious. Nothing terrible about that, but it didn’t send anyone running out to buy. Now, her messaging talks about bridging the distance with the gift of Toffee. And that was a direct relation to the times people feeling split up, isolated and offering something that companies could send to their clients or their employees. Now, when she talks about her toffee, she mentions that it’s the perfect gift every time. And who doesn’t know someone that needs a guest? We designed it fully custom from start to finish. We didn’t just want the website to be beautiful, but we also wanted to improve function and ease of use for her visitors. When it comes to branding for high dollar sales, branding for luxury clients. That includes the experience that the clients have any time they encounter your brand, when they use your website, when they encounter any of your touch points, or how smoothly and great it goes when they’re working with you directly. If you have a website that’s pretty but confusing and frustratingly difficult for them to take the first step towards working with you, they’re gonna leave, and they’re gonna leave with a less than stellar emotional connection to your brand. And then finally, for the toffee store, we this part still in process. We took her from cheap to Instagram worthy, unboxing video inspiring packaging. This is for a product company, sure, but this is a great example of elevating a touch point. And again, if you can’t think of in your service business where your touch points might show up, grab that touch point. Checklist. Download it, get those mental juices flowing. So, what did all of this result in real branding ROI on the Toffee star. When we launched their new website, they doubled their annual revenue in corporate gifting alone in the first month after the rebrand and new website double their revenue just from corporate gifting. When they met up, they knew that Corporate Gifting was their more ideal clients. They were barely getting any sales to companies. Now their ideal client is find them much easier and doubled their annual revenue in the first. Oh, that is the power of knowing what client you’re trying to attract and positioning yourself to attract them.
Johanna: I can do the same thing for you. I can take you through the steps to create a brand identity that takes you from best kept secret to brand name so that you won’t have to under charge for your services. Work with every single client that comes along. Or do you work that doesn’t bring you joy. If you want to learn more, schedule a consult at DesignbyJostudio.com or just to stay in touch. Follow me on Instagram and it’s at design by Jo studio. I’m easy to find, and when you go to my website, trust me, it will not be hard to figure out how to schedule a consult. That button is everywhere. So I promised Jason that I, too, would find a way to add more value. And since I knew that my audience today is primarily designers, and in the home industry, I want to talk about breaking the curse of the College children. Wear no shoes. Now, if your dad wasn’t a farmer like mine, you may have never heard this phrase, but maybe you’ve heard people say you need to drink your own champagne. There are various ways to say that, but the designer problem that I have found in designers across any industry is that we often depend on just a portfolio to show our value. I showed you a little bit of that with my website earlier, but we took pretty photos out there and expect the client to draw their own conclusions about the problem that we solve for them and why we can do it better than anyone else. Just from a portfolio. Designers are often guilty of having little to no branding and poor websites. We think, well, my work speaks for itself here’s. My portfolio, do what you will with it does sound familiar. Why does this happen to designers in particular? It’s not just designers. To be fair, this happens far outside of the design world as well. But what my theory is is that we are creative all day long for other people, and it’s hard to find time to work on our own stuff. We’re so busy working in our business we can’t find time to work on. A portfolio is all about you. But a good website should be all about your client. So it’s worth it to take the time to go from a portfolio to a well positioned brand and showcase that in a way with a website that doesn’t just sit there, but that turns visitors into customers while you sleep.
Johanna: Start with your messaging. First you know your value. Start talking about it. Words matter, but then build the brand images around the words and the feelings that you want to convey. Remember, people hiring a designer are looking for connection. They want to feel like you get them, and they should perceive that from your website and other brand touch points, they should be able to feel like you get them before they ever talk to you. So just to recap, and then I’ll make sure to save a little bit of time for questions here. But today for branding for high dollar sales, we worked on knowing your value, showing your value and always finding a way to add more value, because if you don’t say it about yourself and show it about yourself, you can’t expect your customers to know it about yourself. So thank you again for your time today. I’m Johanna White with Design by Jo Brands Design Services, and I would love to help you look as good as you are.
Jason: Awesome. Had just a few questions we have here now and then. Like I said, you can anybody want next more. One of the questions that we have is I’m swamped with the clients that I’m working on right now. So what would what would you suggest on how much time I should spend each week or each month on rebranding myself in my that’s a great question.
Johanna: And that’s exactly what I meant by you’re. One of the people saying I’m so busy working in my business, I just don’t have time to work on it. So I’ll tell you what works for me, which I knew that I was putting off branding myself, and part of that was an excuse. It was true. I was always busy working on client stuff, but I finally realized how much potential income I was losing by not doing it. And I realized that the time to do it was right now so you could portion it a little time per week. What I chose to do was actually to look a little bit out on my calendar, see where my most pressing deliverables had to break. And before I onboarded or allowed myself to onboard any new clients, I blocked actually about three months on my calendar and treated myself like my own client. Now, that is not the method that would work for everyone. May be setting aside one day a week to go to the office, but work on your business instead of in it is the more sustainable method for you.

Johanna: I just knew that I could not afford to waste another months even charging small amounts for so many clients. I was going to always then be too busy to make changes to my business. So I looked ahead, said, Where’s my deadline that I’ve promised for this client? Now I’m blocking three months. I am refusing to take clients on, maybe starve a little bit during there, but I’m going to get this done. And I treated myself with the courtesy that I treat my own clients, which is to give them my full attention. And I just powered through the rebrand. And like I said, then, the results happened overnight. I raise my prices immensely because I now could show that I was worth it. I wasn’t just telling them. And, you know, when I did that, then getting one client after that shift paid for the whole first six months of the year. So I can’t give you an exact answer, but I just challenge you to think about opportunity cost of not doing it as quickly as possible.
Jason: Okay, next question was about project portfolio that you mentioned. They already have some images of some of the remodels that they did that they are not happy about. Do you suggest re photographing those with a professional photographer?
Johanna: Absolutely. If they’re happy with the project, just not with the photo, it’s totally worth taking the time, getting the photographer staging the space. And the thing about a business website instead of a portfolio is you don’t have to show all of your work. You can just show the best work, maybe even just one project that you feel like really communicate your style to your audience. So it’s still worth getting really great photos of one project. And if you look at my website designed by Jostudio.com and you scroll down the homepage, you will see a work section.

Johanna: So I did not get rid of showing off work, but now it’s in the form of case studies where in addition to showing some of the projects that I really enjoyed and that really match my style, it also walks potential clients through my process what they can expect and results. But I don’t have to go in and constantly update and constantly add my latest work. I just take time every now and again to go, okay. I’ve got a new favorite project that I want to show up. I’m going to take the time to revamp a little bit, add that to the site, but it’s far more valuable to have one amazingly showcased project that communicates the value that you want to be charging at versus 20 before and after that just show. Yeah. I’ve done a lot of work, but can’t really tell if it’s great.
Jason: And one of the exercises we head through with our own clients is we do an exercise to see who they are and what is their unique selling proposition. Then look at their projects to see which ones match up with that and all the ones that do not say we need to take those off the website because you’re not, as you say, attracting the right client, because if you have all of your projects and we’ve all done this because I’m an architect, my trade and I actually have projects I’m not proud of, but they help pay the bills. But they are not projects that are not on our website because it was not the right fit for who we were trying to attract. And so we do that exercise all the time. And I tell designers all the time, do not click every project on there. If it’s not best representing you and who you’re trying to attract. 100%, it’s totally value over volume 20. Bad things does not make one good thing. So take the time. Take the effort to really showcase it in one way. Yes, totally worth it.
Jason: Yep. I agree. Next question we have is about business card. They mentioned that you have a fabulous business card, but they said in the digital age, now there are these tap cards that I actually have one of the top cards that you tap on the phone. What do you do in lieu of not being able to hand out the business card to have that show you when you meet someone when you meet a prospect, but you don’t have a traditional business card.

Johanna: So first I’m going to say get the dining business card because print is not dead. It’s bad. Print is dead. And in a world like that.
Jason: I like that bad printer.
Johanna: Every touch point is mostly digital and locked behind a glass screen. Something handing someone something tactile and show stopping can really be a mic drop moment on that first impression. But let’s say you want to ignore my advice or people are scared of COVID so they don’t want to take something that you hand them. So far, that hasn’t happen to me. If I am in a physical space, they still want the card when they’re like, oh, shiny gold. If you don’t have that. Yes, there are digital task cards. They’re pretty cool. They’re impressive. I do help some clients set those up and order them. But all of that aside, let’s say you have absolutely nothing to hand them, nothing to tap. Yes, you are. Then your brand touch point, how you dress, how you act, how you show up for that interaction is a touch point for your brand. If you are feeling lazy and like, well, everybody wears sweats now and it’s it’s trendy and whatever, but you’re trying to attract high dollar clients. That is a disconnect. It’s a branding disconnect that is not consistent with who you say you are. If you say I’m a VIP experience for your home, you want to conduct yourself in a way that lines up with that. Be early, be polite, be in a world of fast and quick and cheap and just get things done their minimum dare to stand for excellence in what you do. And I often help my clients with personal branding as well as business branding. So it is not uncommon for you to be one of the first touch points of your brand, and I help them with their style, with with the brand messaging. They’ve got that crisp, clear statement of who they are and the value that they serve. And I help them with personal branding photo shoots so that if someone’s going to meet them via their website before meeting them in person, they can start to feel like they know you, et cetera. So yes, absolutely. You as a personal brand are also a touch point.
​Jason: Good way to good way to end. So if you are a member of the NKBA, this is a CEU session so you can log these hours and next month we’re going to also do another CEU session or and it’s going to be how to do affordable PR on your own and how to get in touch with the media so you could get published. So that’s what we’re going to be talking about next month. So we hope to see you all there, and you have an amazing rest of you. Okay. Bye bye.

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