Thursday, March 08, 2012

We Are Defined By What We Decline

People buy what we aren’t.

If having a brand means taking a stand, then our job is to make it abundantly clear to the marketplace what we are the antithesis of. Who we aren’t, what we don’t want, what we won’t do and what we refuse to stand for.

This boundary, this stake in the ground, is the sweetest freedom available.

It makes our brand simpler by reducing the burden of choice. It gives our brand room to maneuver within the vicinity of our values. It helps our brand focus on the small corner of the world we’ve chosen to serve.

When we choose our enemy, when we become the antichrist to something, we leave no doubt in people’s minds what we stand for. We are defined by what we decline.

Franklin Covey, the leading provider of time management materials and corporate assessments, operates a few dozen stores nationwide. But if you stop by the mall on a Sunday, you’ll notice the following sign on their door:

“Closed Sundays to allow employees time for family and worship.”

Even on the second busiest shopping day of the week, they refuse to take people’s money. And as a result, they’ve lost millions of dollars each year for the past two decades.

All because they put their beliefs on the line. They know who they aren’t.

And they’re not afraid to shout it from the rooftops.

What have you declined this week?

For the list called, "21 Things I Learned While Spying on Myself," send an email to me, and you win the list for free!

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Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Writing, Publishing, Performing, Consulting

What happens when you wear a nametag all day, every day, for 4000+ days?

Strangers make fun of you, mostly.

Check out Scott's comic strip, Adventures in Nametagging!