Blog posts on creative business & entrepreneurship

What is a unique value proposition & how to create one

What is a unique value proposition & how to create one

Your unique value proposition is a statement of how your business solves the customer’s problem in a unique way – what differentiates your business from thousands of others in the world who are attempting to do the same. Finding it may be one of the most challenging aspects of branding and marketing. In this post, I offer tips on how to do that. Read more...

Avoid panic: Start looking for a designer before you need one

Avoid panic: Start looking for a designer before you need one

Every now and then a business owner inquires about my availability, and I have to turn down their project because they want me to start working on it immediately, which just isn't possible. Many business owners are very bad at planning, which is why they only think of looking for help at the very last minute. If you’re a business owner, it would be wise for you to be actively looking for potential people to hire all the time. Here’s why. Read more...

“Premium” isn't “luxury” & more myths about premium brands

“Premium” isn't “luxury” & more myths about premium brands

Most people when they hear the words “premium brand” imagine a luxury brand: Cartier, Tiffany, designer clothes, vintage champagne, 95% fair trade cocoa chocolate with edible 24-karat gold flakes. You may be feeling this way about the word “premium”, too. But in truth, you may already be using premium products and services yourself, without even knowing it. Read more...

Design contests suck. Don’t do them.

Design contests suck. Don’t do them.

Every now and then a friend will forward me a post about a design or an illustration contest. I never apply. I never forward it to my colleagues, either. Not even when it’s my friends who organize the contest. I just won’t do it because I oppose the idea of contests in principle. Here’s why. Read more...

The hidden blocks of business growth (it's not your mindset)

The hidden blocks of business growth (it's not your mindset)

If you're anything like me, you've got too many projects you're working on in various stages of completion. There are many things you want to “get around to eventually” that you know would be helpful to your business. Contrary to popular opinion, success is not out of your reach because you don't know what to do. I know you do. There's something else at work here, and I'll tell you what it is. Read more...

9 marketing lessons from a “natural” marketer

9 marketing lessons from a “natural” marketer

My marketing was the most effective when I wasn't aware what I was doing is in fact marketing. I was completely oblivious to the concept, yet I did things right. Where did I learn that? I have no idea. My theory is that the best kind of marketing is indistinguishable from a regular conversation people have in real life. The same skills we use to get around in relationships are essential to any marketing endeavor. Read more...

How to make an impression at a big in-person event

How to make an impression at a big in-person event

In-person networking is a powerful way of making connections with potential clients. If you’re preparing for an upcoming event where you will meet new people, this post will help you pick your priorities, so you can turn your new connections into followers and clients. Read more...

Why “good ideas” never happen & why you can't avoid difficult decisions

Why “good ideas” never happen & why you can't avoid difficult decisions

Good ideas are cheap – you hear a dozen new ideas every morning before breakfast as you’re scrolling through your newsfeed. They don’t change you. They don’t turn you into a better person. Positive change requires conscious effort. It requires you to think, implement, test and evaluate, and it requires you to make difficult decisions. Read more...

The vital elements of a premium brand

The vital elements of a premium brand

What makes a brand premium? What does premium even mean? Premium brands have value propositions that are so different from other products or services in the market, that the comparisons don’t make sense. This enables premium brands to charge 10 times or a 100 times more than their competitors, because they offer something that competitors can’t match. While it may seem like creating a premium brand would be more expensive, it actually doesn’t have to be. Read more...

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