How to Think About Brand Marketing and Positioning Before You Think About Cost and Attribuition

Dial in Your Brand Promise (Your Elevator Pitch)

The key elements you need within your pitch are: what you do, your differentiation/why it’s unique, and who your core customer is. Keep this short, sweet, and to the point. Do not get cute with it. This pitch is for internal use and to be used as a “north star.” Every piece of marketing will reference and align with this pitch. Be hard on yourself. Ask others to digest it and explain it back to you.

Build a Brand Book/Set of Rules That Include the Following:

  1. Your Visuals:
    • Photos and videos: What do they look like? Pull references from TV, film, magazines, social media, and other brands. The reference pulling applies to everything below as well.
  2. Dial in Your Casting:
    • Who’s in your content, your PDP images, on your social channels?
  3. Dial in Your Complementary Products and Brands:
  4. Brand as a Person:
    • Who personifies your brand? Use real people or fictitious characters.
  5. What Does Your Brand Sound Like? (Copy/Voice):
  6. Who Can You Collaborate With:
    • Across social platforms? (in tandem with brand as a person)
  7. Who Can You Gift/Seed Product To:
  8. What Would Retail/Hospitality Look/Feel Like?
    • A fun exercise to force you to build a world around your brand. That is the essence of a brand, in my opinion, world-building.

Start Building

  • From here on out, everything you do needs to be built with these rules/brand promise in mind
  • You do not need a massive marketing budget to start playing by your rules
  • The following touchpoints need to be aligned with your rules and brand promise
    • Your product 
    • Organic social 
    • All image and video assets 
    • Website UI/UX
    • Email/SMS marketing 
    • Creator partnerships 
    • Brand collaborations 
    • Customer Expereince 
    • Affiliate partnerships 
    • PR partnerships 

Key Points to Understand

  1. You need to be consistent.
  2. You need to be repetitive.
  3. You need to be continuously iterating and dialing in your book/rules.


  • Everything needs to speak together. The key is targeting, dialing in the focus. This is all because the consumer cannot be confused about what you are selling. You cannot be all over the map. The tighter you are with the product, positioning, and brand, the less confused the consumer will be.
  • Another tip: when you start, keep it more on the nose than you might think. Don’t be too cute. You can get cute when the awareness is there.
  • For founders, if you believe and subscribe to the growing trend that investing in brand marketing is the right thing to do, you need to make that bet and understand that that is exactly what it is: a bet. The brand book building and rulemaking are all activities to underwrite that bet and improve the chances of a win. To reiterate, you need to pick a lane, be specific, and do not try to hedge your bets, as this will confuse your core customer base. Again, keep it simple and targeted. Do your research, find the whitespace, and go for it.
  • A little bit every day. Keep refining, and try not to pivot too quickly or too hard.
  • Focus on input, building these brand muscles, and less on output.

Read and watch recommendations

Happy brand building, 

— Joe