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Human Packaging

In this blog we have gone through figuring out your skill sets, looked at where you came from—and finally, avoided the mirage of greener pastures and taken time to decide what your destination is (i.e. what your ideal business looks like)…now it’s time to actually start building your brand.

This is where your positioning becomes the cornerstone of your business.

We have a great client and friend, Richard Seppala.  When Richard came to us, his business sold unique 800 phone numbers that his clients would use to track their marketing.  He would assign a unique 800 phone number for each marketing piece a client would put out, each ad they would run in the phonebook or newspaper etc.  Then when a prospect calls in off of the marketing piece or ad, Richard’s clients receive tracking data about the call, where it came from and who the person calling was.  More importantly, the client discovered which of their marketing pieces had the best ROI (Return on Investment).  We were blown away when we first met Richard because we had never seen such data produced from using multiple 800 numbers—as well as the fact that you could get as many numbers as you wanted to test marketing campaigns for a very low price.

We started using Richard’s service ourselves  and it worked as promised.  As  Richard learned what we did, he came to us for branding and business building help.  We took a look at Richard’s company and his message.  His company was called "Total Census Solutions." Ok so……

(Sound of needle scratching record on a record player)

What?!  We gave Richard a hard time about this (in a friendly way!), but to his defense, he was originally serving the Senior Housing industry.  And in Senior Housing, "total census" means that a senior housing community is at 100% capacity, which means their marketing worked.  So, while it was a clever titlemfor one industry, once Richard started branching out from the Senior Housing industry, no one had a clue what total census meant. It was boring, hard to remember  and  ultimately hurt Richard’s business.

At our Branding & Positioning Power Hour, we brainstormed with Richard on what benefit he was actually providing his clients  and how he was unique.  When we got down to the heart of it all, what Richard’s service was great at (and what Richard was really passionate about) was Return on Investment (R.O.I.).  In other words, what was the real monetary return to his clients for each dollar they spent on advertising?  That’s what drives growth in small businesses—when your marketing is performing well, but better than that, when you know which marketing is working and which campaigns are a waste of money you can grow exponentially by concentrating your marketing dollars on the campaigns that are profitable.  That one session focused Richard’s real "Unique Selling Proposition" and he instantly became  "The ROI Guy."  And BOY did the name stick stick!

You can now check out Richard’s website at  Richard really ran with the ROI theme, changing his color scheme from Red and Black, to green (to signify the money you make on your return on investment).  What Richard did for clients became so much clearer to everyone he met, he "helped them increase their ROI by maximizing marketing campaigns and stopping the bleeding on marketing that doesn’t work!"  Richard’s business even grew more when his moniker became that succinct because he put together a network of other service providers that focus on maximizing marketing ROI for businesses.  Now, they  all do joint ventures with each other and refer their clients to one another.  It’s really become a fun business.  More people know Richard as the ROI Guy than they do his real name! And that is what a good brand can do for you.

This is the essence of human packaging.  Creating your position by "packaging" yourself as a unique personality in the business world.  Becoming "THE" something instead of ANOTHER anything.  Moving from a commodity in the marketplace, to a scarcity.  So scarce, there’s only one—so those who want to work with you, MUST work with you.   

Once you figure out this brand positioning and learn how to package it, your business and the way the world looks at you will change literally overnight.

That’s why we always help our clients come up with the "Human Packaging" that suits them and their business best.  A catchy name, phrase or slogan is only a piece of the puzzle.  You also have to focus on everything that surrounds you.  You have to make sure your business card, marketing materials, website and your office are all congruent with your packaging.

Think about it for a second, if you are THE expert in your field, and your business cards feel cheap, your letterhead that you write proposals on and send invoices on is tacky or thin, your office is stuck in-between a dollar store and a homeless shelter, and your website looks like an online slum—are people really going to pay you top dollar for what you do? That’s a bit of an over exaggeration, but you get the point!  You have to create a unified look and feel that allows your clients to feel like everything they see and experience adds up to make you the only choice and the most valuable choice.

And by the way, we’re not at all saying that means you should be "traditional" and build a million dollar wood paneled office on the 500th floor of a skyscraper and look like you own a "big" company.  Nothing at all like that.  We’re just saying be very conscious of the image you want to portray once you determine your positioning, and make sure that everything your prospects and clients see adds up in their minds and builds your value.

Do this, and your Position will be solidified and will get you on the path to growing your business exponentially.

Next, we’ll be discussing the second pillar of building your personal brand for success.  Give us some examples of your Human Packaging or start brainstorming your ideas with us in the comments below.  We’ll look forward to hearing from you!

ABOUT THE AUTHORS: JW Dicks (@jwdicks) & Nick Nanton (@nicknanton), lawyers by trade but entrepreneurs by choice, are best-selling authors that consult for small and medium sized businesses internationally on how to build their business through Personality Driven Marketing, Personal Brand Positioning, Guaranteed Media and Mining Hidden Business Assets. They offer free articles, blogs white papers and case studies to guests who visit their web site at Jack and Nick have been featured on NBC, ABC, CBS and FOX affiliates around the country, as well as in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Newsweek,, and many more media outlets. If you're ready to take your business to the next level, get more FREE info now at