AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

One-Minute MarketerHow to Make Your Brand Stand Out

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How to Make Your Brand Stand Out

We all believe we have a unique brand.Top brand differentiators

We probably also agree that “user experience” is the best way to understand how a brand differentiates from another similar brand, just like this Bynder survey found.

But what is user experience? That’s the deeper question. For most, it might be a website or the entire digital ecosystem. The second question is: How to optimize user brand experience?

User brand experience is the holistic view of all interactions with stakeholders and how all those experiences contribute to a positive and differentiated brand. Brand experience can rely on brand identity, brand consistency and the brand promise. What I like about the term “user experience” is that it takes the focus off the organization and places it on the human who has to interact with your marketing, from seeing your logo and calling your phones to searching your website, reacting to your ads and reading your white papers or blogs. In some organizations, there is conflict between the brand managers and digital user experience people.

Yet to me it all comes down to brand promise. If your brand promise is clear and, more importantly, widely understood in your organization, conflict is abated. It is so much easier to know how to set the varied marketing ships’ courses when you know the final destination.

If you or your employees don’t know what your brand promise is, then there’s no need to work on any other area of user experience. Start there and work up from that fundamental bedrock of marketing. If your customers don’t know your brand promise, then you have not differentiated yourself at all.


Written by:

Mark wrote his first direct-mail fundraising letter in 1981 for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. The effort raised a few million dollars in undiscovered wills and legacy gifts. From that day forward Mark discovered a love of the big idea that moves the needle. After 12 years at KWWL, Mark became a business owner as a co-founder of ME&V — rebranded as AMPERAGE in 2015. After 25 years of leading creative teams in video production, graphic design, PR, writing and web development, Mark transitioned out of ownership in 2021. Today he serves in an employee role as special projects consultant. He is creatively ambidextrous — son of an artist and engineer — and famous for distilling complex ideas down to a few words and a few visuals. Mark is a writer. When he found that many nonprofits struggled with complex branding puzzles, he wrote the book, “NonProfit-NonMarketing .” He also wrote a novel called “Reenactment.” Mark is an active blogger OneMinuteMarketer® with nearly 1,000 readers each week on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. One of his most popular YouTube videos is on “How to Look Good on Zoom.” One of Mark’s fondest business memories was being named to INC 500 two times and attending the INC 500 conference with other winners. Mark is considered by some a Civil War expert (and that explains his novel). Mark also served as an adjunct professor in the business and in the communications departments at Wartburg College. Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is currently vice president of the University of Iowa Journalism and Mass Communications Advisory Board. Mark is married to state Sen. Liz Mathis, and the two love to travel, even when it means being trapped by a volcano in the Czech Republic for three weeks.