Archives for category: Branding

This morning I decided to forgo my usual morning run due to the unexpected cold that’s made its way to Ewing, and headed over to the gym instead. The horribly boring, dreadful gym. I had to spice it up a little bit, so naturally I brought along the latest issue of Food Network magazine to read while elliptical-ing along to the sound of the White Stripes. I think the people around me appreciated the delicious looking cinnamon buns that glazed graced the pages of May’s Homemade issue.

In my time flipping through the mag (making sure that no one else could actually see my mouth water), I stumbled across an advertisement for a new product from Wendy’s that leads me to believe they’re changing their approach and reevaluating their standing in the fast food market. The new Flatbread Grilled Chicken offered by the national chain is like a grown-up version of what Wendy’s has always wanted to be, at least in my eyes: a more healthful alternative to McDonald’s and Burger King. In some ways, Wendy’s may even be taking a stab at striking up a competition with places like Panera and Au Bon Pain that make quality, healthy options fast.

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Don’t even try to tell me this doesn’t look amazing…

Nevertheless, my time with the elliptical had to end at some point, so I closed my reading material and went about my day, still intrigued by the thought of a healthy, new option at Wendy’s. Now I write to you after a few classes and before a few hours of group projects to share the big news! Try to contain your excitement…

But let’s think about it like this: next time you’re out running errands and fast food is your only option, you’ll thank that girl from Advantageous Advertising because without her you’d be left to your own, burger-craving devices. You’re welcome.

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After writing my last post about what it takes to build a brand, I decided to think a little further into it and apply it to my own professional situation. As a current college student, now is the time for me to figure out what it is I want to do with my life and what it will take to get there.

In my Writing for Interactive Multimedia course this semester I have been able to take the time and make a conscious effort to build my own brand. We blog (oh, hey), we write, we take pictures for digital journalism pieces, and we learn to build our very own websites. In the beginning of the semester I denied the fact that in less than 4 months I would have a fully active blog and functional website, but now that there are only a few more weeks of classes left before summer (glorious, glorious summer) it’s starting to hit me that it may all be possible. I’m building my brand by defining who Liz Dinsmore is to my professors, peers, and potential employers. And the culmination of all this hard work will be the completion of my website.

I’m learning HTML and CSS as I go, but as it stands now, I think I’m doing fairly well! It’s kind of fun to see what is possible to do with my computer’s notepad and a good web design book. I recommend Build Your Own Website the Right Way Using HTML & CSS by Ian Lloyd. The title may be a bit long, but the content is incredibly useful…especially for those with zero (and I mean zero) previous experience with anything even remotely technological.

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Here’s a sneak peak at the work I’ve done so far!

So after figuring out what a div is and why you need to close them with slashes and href’s and links and all those fun things I think I realized something: building this website completely from scratch is one of the best possible ways for me to show employers that I can learn quickly and produce something of value. In this age of technology, it could be my new found HTML and CSS skills that land me a job over someone who may not have gotten around to learning them yet.

My advice to you is to think about your brand and how you want to present it. Is a portfolio website your best bet? Maybe. Or maybe you should focus on perfecting your resume and worry about a website later. Whatever works for you. As long as you know who you are, and what your professional brand is, no matter how you present it you’re bound to succeed.

Recently I have been feeling like everything I’ve ever learned about marketing, advertising, job hunting, career building, living, and breathing has revolved around one thing, and one thing only: building a brand. What is my personal brand? What is my professional brand? What do I want my colleagues, professors, and potential employers to think of when they think of Liz Dinsmore? These are the questions that keep me up at night (I hope this is the worst problem in my life…).

But instead of figuring out how to build my own brand, I thought it could be useful to look around and figure out how products are successfully branded. It seems to me that what makes an advertising campaign a success is its ability to give a product a strong brand identity. Association is everything in marketing. So this is what I found…

Nabisco’s Ritz Crackers are not only a delicious snack, but also a perfect example of a successfully branded product. What comes to mind when you think of Ritz? A game day treat? A casual cocktail party hors d’oeuvres? A post-playground snack for school-aged cuties? If you said yes to all three…nice work! Ritz has branded itself as being the perfect gourmet accompaniment for the social butterfly in all of us via their widely recognized and appreciated “Open for Fun” campaign. Let’s take a look, shall we?

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There you have it, folks. A perfectly branded product. If these ads don’t make you want to run to the nearest store and open up a box of Ritz (or should I say “open up a box of fun?”), I don’t know what will.

So I’m taking a lesson from Nabisco and applying their strategy of branding to my own personal and professional brands. I want to be recognized for my organization, attention to detail, and strong communication skills (that’s not too much to ask, right?). All it will take is for me to figure out how to present those qualities to the rest of the world…unfortunately I don’t think I’ve reached a point in my career where a multimillion dollar ad campaign is the way for me to do so…