5 Reasons Great Brands Aren’t Selfish

As you consider creating a strong and powerful brand. People like people (and brands) that are like them. People like people (and brands) that are interested..

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Asia } Cambodia } Angkor Wat } Aug 2010
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As you consider creating a strong and powerful brand, a significant philosophy to consider is creating an un-selfish brand. This was important before the advent of social media, but now that many brands find themselves online in social media (Facebook and Twitter) the stakes are much higher. Here are some principles to consider:

  1. People like people (and brands) that are like them. No one wants to sit across a table and listen to someone’s diatribe on how great they are. (Remember this as you sit down to a holiday meal with relatives you haven’t seen in a while). Similarly, only hearing about a Brand’s accomplishments are tiresome and not conducive to creating a relationship. Find commonality and common ground.
  2. People like people (and brands) that are interested in them. Ever notice how much easier it is to strike up a conversation when you get genuinely interested in the person you’re talking to? The same is true for Brands as well. People tend to feel an affinity for Brands that seem to speak directly to them, that are genuinely interested in understand who they are. So get interested! Ask questions, find out who you’re talking to.
  3. People like people (and brands) who use their connections to promote lesser-known individuals. Ever sat at a table you felt completely out-classed/out-networked/or just out of water? Remember the person who took you under their wing and introduced you to the people at the event and not only made you feel welcome, but made you feel a part of it? Remember your gratitude in that moment (and now) to that individual? That’s a powerful emotional resonance if a Brand can capture it. Look for complimentary Brands and forge a relationship to cross-promote each other to the room of “strangers.”
  4. People appreciate people (and brands) that improve their community. Where would our communities be without those pillars that are the glue that holds the community together? We may not hang out with them regularly, but we do usually know who is making a difference. When a Brand makes a difference in the community — we notice that too. Lead the way, make a difference, create a better community.
  5. People like people (and brands) that support what’s important to them. It doesn’t really matter where you passion lies, green issues, gun rights, youth programs, hunger, etc. Whatever it is, you’re likely to align yourself with other people who also feel passionately about those things which you feel passionately about. Brands that support those same things individuals are passionate about will benefit from a similar affinity. If your passion is the school’s swim team and a Brand supports your team monetarily, or on a volunteer basis, you’re much more likely to have a great feeling about that brand.

Understanding that great brands are at their core, unselfish, will help you to position your brand to support others, and in so doing, create a strong brand affinity with your target audience. And Brands with a strong affinity will be infinitely more successful, own their share of the marketplace, and make more money.


Tisha Oehmen

Tisha Oehmen is a professional brand strategist and a leader in the branding field. She was recently named a member of the Global Guru’s Top 30 Brand Gurus. She is also the co-founder of Oregon-based Paradux Media Group and the best-selling author of the book, Finding Brand: The Brand Book Tutorial.

Possessing expertise in both front- and back-office operations, Tisha conceptualizes, develops, and implements initiatives to foster brand effectiveness like no other. With over 15 years of experience in branding and marketing, Tisha has successfully led large financial institutions and health care companies down the path of renaming their business.

Where Tisha really shines is in the work that isn’t done. Sometimes a name change for a business isn’t in their best interest and after meeting with Tisha, they are able to find the true value and equity that has always been in their brand. Tisha has a special knack of being able to communicate the value so that the CEO/Business owner can see its luster and then with a little polishing, make it shine company wide.

Tisha is best known for developing long lasting branding campaigns that speak to the heart of the business, the brand, and the community. True brand, no matter how big or small, has longevity. Creating branding campaigns that have longevity, that have a laser-like focus, is where Tisha thrives.

Tisha received her M.B.A. from the University of Oregon, from where she also earned a B.A. in Political Science. She enjoyed a distinguished academic career punctuated by enthusiastic and successful participation in competitive speaking events, and holds numerous awards for her skill in public speaking. Tisha is widely recognized for her ability to capture an audience’s attention with her straightforward and engaging speaking style.

When not working, she enjoys golfing, baking, reading, and hiking with her partner, Mike, and their two dogs, Chloe and Jackson. She’s also an active member of Rotary International, the Chamber of Commerce, and is a very proud supporter of the Oregon Ducks. Tisha lives in Eagle Point, Oregon.

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