24 Feb Business Forum: Branding Your Business Recap

img_8627_32516300146_oOn Monday January 23, 2017, Presidents’ Council Business Chamber (PCBC) members as well as local small business owners, entrepreneurs, and members of JumpStart’s Core City  attended Branding Your Business, one of four quarterly topic specific business forums presented throughout the year by The Presidents’ Council.    Participants were invited to JumpStart’s Midtown location on Carnegie Avenue for a morning of networking and business development.  Branding Your Business, presented in collaboration with Jumpstart, engaged participant’s in creating and improving their branding and marketing strategies with direct interaction with an amazing group of expert panelists.

Guests registered for the event and were offered breakfast, provided by PCBC member Stacy Stoudemire of Simply Elegant Catering. Erica C. Penick, Director of Operations for The Presidents’ Council welcomed guests to the event and discussed the evening’s theme, Branding Your Business. Erica then introduced the group to the day’s expert panelists.

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Chris Howse, President of Howse Solutions and Sway Effect. Sway Effect offers a reliable, high-quality alternative to in-house resources for: graphic design, web design, web content management, print & multimedia productions.

Tara Pringle Jefferson, Owner of Bloom Beautifully. Tara is a writer, editor and social media expert who has turned her own personal blogging and writing into a booming business. Tara recently founded Bloom Beautifully, a self-care subscription box.

Andrea Lyons, President of Main Street Communications & Publicity. Main Street is a multicultural advertising and marketing communications agency, helping organizations define their target audience, refine their message and deliver captivating creative executions.

Montrie Rucker Adams, Chief Visibility Officer at Visibility Marketing Inc.  Visibility Marketing Inc. is a full service public relations company that works to make you “more visible” by creating and executing integrated marketing communications solutions.

Freddie Coffey, Digital Marketing Manager at JumpStart. Freddie manages the day-to-day digital execution of Jumpstart including digital strategy, website development, email automation, audio and video production and social media outreach.

Following the introduction of all expert panelists, Stephanie Sheeley, Member Services Coordinator for The Presidents’ Council Business Chamber gave a brief introduction, defining branding. Stephanie discussed the difference between marketing and branding and emphasized the fact that branding is not only about a logo or look, but rather is a holistic strategy aimed at communicating the values, characteristics and attributes of a business.

The group was then invited to participate in a few creative exercises. One exercise was aimed at helping participants understand the branding strategies of some major companies. By showing various elements of a company’s brand, participants were asked to describe some of the values, attributes and characteristics that they felt without using the brand name. Next, participants were invited to work through an exercise aimed at helping them identify their target audience and brand characteristics.

Following the creative branding exercises, participants were broken up into small groups where they had the opportunity to engage in intimate conversations with the expert panelists and receive individualized advice and information catered to their own business. Participants went through their websites and social media accounts with Chris Howse and Freddie Coffey, who offered advice on highlighting value proposition on one’s front page.     Andrea Lyons emphasized  being deliberate is essential in any marketing strategy and advised participants to be as focused as possible when executing certain campaigns. Tara Pringle Jefferson advised, that consistency is key when it comes to social media marketing and branding. Posting original content on a regular basis keeps your followers engaged.

The morning concluded with a question and answer session and panel discussion, giving all participants the opportunity to ask the panelists any lingering questions and for them to offer a final word of advice.

Erica C. Penick thanked everyone for their participation in the forum, she also discussed upcoming PCBC events, including enrollment into the Emerging Entrepreneurs Program. Gloria Ware discussed the Core City program at JumpStart. Guests were invited to network.

Once again, we would like to thank all that came out to our Business Forum: Branding Your Business, making it a great success. We appreciate your support and look forward to bringing you more profound and informative business forums in the near future.