How To Build Your Brand: 3 Smart Branding Strategies You Can Use Now

Hey, it’s Marie Forleo and you are watching
MarieTV, the place to be to create a business and a life that you love. You know, we felt
it was about time to bring back one of our favorite segments called Love Your Branding,
Baby. Thank you, Zackie. Zach, you can go now. In this segment we highlight a brand that
just gets it, from their design to their messaging, all the way through to the actual product.
And today we’re taking a look at Marine Layer, a company who makes absurdly soft and
sustainably crafted clothing based in San Francisco. Now, there’s a lot of things that Marine
Layer is doing right, but today we’re going to focus on 3 smart strategies that you can
use in your business. Let’s get right into it with strategy number one: be refreshingly
real. So what does that mean? It means that you can be quirky, you can be awkward, and
flawed, and still have a professional, successful business. For starters, check out the Our Story page.
Here’s the founder, Mike, posing with his merchandise. And the copy says, “Ignore
the awkward smile, focus on the shirts.” That’s letting us in and telling us, hey,
we’re a team of regular people led by a regular guy who’s not some camera-ready,
born-for-the-spotlight superstar. And then as story continues telling us how they grew
from their first tee shirt, it tells us about their first mistake. “Since then we’ve gotten a bunch of friends
to quit their real jobs and help us make some more shirts and open up a few more stores
in some places we like to visit. Except for Burlingame. We opened up a shop there and
closed that shit down fast. In fact, the only good thing about that store was the opening
party we had at Shabu Shabu.” That’s not just honest, it’s funny and
it’s conversational in the way that you don’t normally see in business. And the more
that you cruise around their site, you’ll see that they’re refreshingly real on every
page. So now ask yourself, could you show more of the real you in your business? Are
you a little more buttoned up than you need to be? Remember, you don’t have to hide who
you really are or put on your business voice to be considered professional. Strategy number two is create trust through
transparency. So you’ve probably heard the saying that in business we like to buy from
people we know, like, and trust, and that is so true. And one of the easiest ways to
create more trust in your business is to be transparent. So you want to talk about how
you run your business and why you make the choices that you make. Now, Marine Layer clearly
cares about sustainability and makes a point to talk about how most of their clothing is
manufactured in the US. But check this out, here they say, “Our
goal has always been to make the highest quality product for our customers, and after a few
years of making pretty expensive outerwear and sweaters that didn’t always fit quite
right, we went looking for a solution. We happened to find it in Sampran, Thailand at
a family-run factory called Palmy. The specialize in technical wear and maintain ethical standards
that match ours. Match made in ML heaven? We think so.” They’re being honest about the fact that
sometimes you have to compromise in order to get the right product, and they’re also
getting us on board with that compromise instead of trying to sweep it under the rug so we
don’t see it. Now, that kind of transparency gives us the feeling of, you know what? I
know these guys. They’re good guys. I can trust them. So I want you to ask yourself,
is there any part of your story or your process that your customers would appreciate hearing
more about? Anything that you could share that could help them know, like, and trust
you more? Strategy number three: don’t be afraid to
sell. Sales are the heartbeat of your business. If you don’t have sales, you don’t have a
business. But so many of us are afraid to put that out there plainly and say, “Hey,
I made something awesome. I think you’re gonna love it and I want you to buy it.” Here’s a few examples of how Marine Layer
is doing it right. On the Our Story page, Mike talks about how
he started the company, invites us to come by a store, and says very plainly, “and
buy some shirts, please.” Here’s another example. On the New York
City store page, they talk about being the softer side of the concrete jungle and they
end by saying, “Come buy some shirts and help us pay the rent.” There’s nothing pushy or aggressive about
it. They are proud of what they do, they care about their customers, and they want their
business to thrive. So have a look at your brand and ask yourself, are you too shy to
ask your customers to buy? I’m not. Because right now I’ll tell you this, if you want
my help to make sure your personality shines through your brand, go buy The Copy Cure. It’s a writing program that we made, it’s
enormously effective, and I really believe you’re gonna love it. You can get it at And now let’s put all these great ideas
to work because insight without action is worthless. In the comments below tell me this:
which one of these 3 smart strategies do you need to focus on the most? And what’s the
one action step you can take right now to move yourself ahead? As always, the best discussions happen after
the episode over at, so get your buns over there and leave a comment now. Did you like this video? If so, subscribe
to our channel and I would be so grateful if you shared this with your friends. And
if you want even more resources to create a business and a life that you love, plus
some personal insights from me that I only get to talk about in email, come on over to and make sure you sign up for email updates. Stay on your game and keep going for your
dreams because the world needs that special gift that only you have. Thank you so much
for watching and I’ll catch you next time on MarieTV.

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100 thoughts on “How To Build Your Brand: 3 Smart Branding Strategies You Can Use Now

  1. Great stuff Marie. And how you hold all those words, phrases and sentences together is also impressive. I'll be weaving your insights into my approach to marketing
    my 1to1 teaching and workshops. Thank you for your time and professionalism.

  2. LoL…*))) How I love these synchronicities. I seem to have a strange voice. I personally find my voice normal. I hear myself a lot on recordings and videos, so I know how my voice sounds. Since I even make a living through my voice, it is very important to me, of course.
    But often people tell me that they really had to get used to my voice. That they have never heard a voice like mine and that my voice sounds really strange. Instead of becoming insecure about my voice, I meanwhile really appreciate that my voice seems to be so strange for a lot of people, because it's my trade mark…*)))

  3. I JUST received a kind but firm reprimand for being open about my failings on a portrait I just made. I was also very clear about what I learned from that mistake but a good friend told me that it will only make people more critical. I thought it would point out that I'd improved. In one evening I figured out how to draw better portraits! Is it wrong to share a failing right when it happens? Should I wait until I've made some progress?

  4. I need to most focus on being comfortable with selling.
    I have a new program to launch, and I've been procrastinating BIG TIME. I'm gonna get out there and make it happen!

  5. These are all tips I can work on improving, I think the transparency and showing mistakes and more behind the scenes of my businesses is something I can work on first! ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. I definitely agree that humanizing your brand makes it exponentially more interesting.

  7. Marie you make great videos. Now change the way you sit in your videos. Your one leg is always red! Every video you sit with your legs crossed and one leg gets red. th eleg that is under..

  8. I'd love to see this for the B2B world. To be honest, I can't figure out how different the messaging/brand (if at all) a B2B service-based company should be.

  9. I'm very honest & transparent in my business but need to definitely redo my about page to show this. Always โค๏ธ Marie's videos

  10. Great information, as usual, but I have to say….Donna Summer is rolling over in her grave right now, and it's all your fault.ย  ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. I would like to focus on creating trust through transparency. My action step is to go back and revise my About page on my website ๐Ÿ™‚ Thank you, Marie!

  12. Awow thanks this really shows of what I was thinking earlier about advertising a business and what people would think ahaha:D

  13. Thanks Marie and Team!! I have to constantly balance the quirky vs luxury side of my cake business, in order to appeal to my gorgeous brides but also clients wanting crazy, awesome (sometimes a bit cheeky) cakes! sam, The Sugar Kitchen xoxo

  14. Definitely #1 Be refreshingly real…every turn I make is telling me I need to do this more and more with my brand. Thanks for another reminder, Marie!

  15. i just found you on youtube. my only regret is not finding you sooner.. the best part tho, i get to watch all of your vidoes from years ago. very informative very helpful . thank you !!!

  16. I think I need to get less serious with my channel/brand! I always get too caught up in trying to be taken seriously that I think I sometimes lose the fun/lighthearted side. Awesome video!! I love this series and channel

  17. They would've not released supplier details if they weren't very close to the family run factory.. โ˜บ๏ธ

  18. LOVE IT!
    1. Be refreshingly real!
    2. Create through transparencyโ€”create trust by sharing behind the scenes.
    3. Don't be afraid to sellโ€”invite the sale, ask for the purchase!

  19. Omg I cannot believe I didn't know about your channel yet! You're amazing! Gotta go binge watch your other videos ๐Ÿ™‚

  20. Hello Marie. I heard about you through one of my clients and think you might become my new obsession (In a good way). I have been following Gary Vee religiously for the past year and you seem to provide a nice balance to his particular style of brand coaching. I will check out your site after watching a few more of your YouTube videos. I enjoyed your advice on authenticity. My biggest insecurity behind my brand is outsourcing my programming and not doing everything in house. I am currently an army of one, but have skills in multiple areas through years of practice and application. As I work on scaling my business, it's important for me to use both my time and money wisely. So all of the points you addressed made sense in my world. I can't wait to see what else you have to say and thank you for finding your passion and talent.

  21. Loved this video! The next step for us is to actually create a "Our Story" page on our website and use some the tips you gave when writing the copy ๐Ÿ™‚

    – Claud Williams

  22. Marie! You're sensational, thank you for just being yourself. I would love it if you could answer this question: I've been incredibly lucky thus far and grown a business simply by 'reacting' to customer demands. I'm at the stage now where I've 'reacted' to everything, and I want to change gears and start 'creating' demand for new products etc. Could you please discuss this? Thank you so much! You're amazing!

  23. So is this when maybe posting how I like to eat chimichangas when not writing music for my band, on my band's FB page? (strategy #2)

  24. Definitely number 3!!! I'm so great at building that trust and rapport but I'm just so scared to lose that trust of friendship if they think I'm sellimg

  25. Marie you did it again! Thanks for the tips. I really like this series so please keep it up.

    I think the area that I need to improve in the most is being myself by letting my quirky personality shine. It's so easy to get caught up presenting yourself in the way you THINK is "professional" but ends up just being plain stiff and boring!

  26. I think the I need to be more proactive in asking people to buy my services. I also need to develop a product to sell. Thank you so much for video. I love it.

  27. I'm so glad I stumbled upon your channel! Also…how can anyone dislike this video?!! It's so damn positive! Love your videos!!

  28. I beleive the most crucial action step I need to take,is not to be afraid to sell.When I think of it,the fear of actually selling consumes me.Any help,Marie?

  29. I can update my About page to reflect my new emphsis on intuition and trusting it to make awesome life decisions! My site right now reflects my yoga teaching background but needs to evolve with me-I'm working with women to help them make difficult transitions to a live they love, via tarot and intutitive coaching.

  30. amazing video!! I started my business from home and I am listening to your videos during I am working and packing the packages for my costumers. Thanks for the motivation!! I hope one day I will sit next to you and tell you face to face how you get me to change my life and the life of others that I could change with your help. Much love – Sara from Portugal.

  31. I'm from the Philippines. I'm grateful I found your channel, your videos are helping me and my business a lot! God bless you Marie and your team..

  32. I was obviously guided to this video for a reason as only yesterday I decided to implement more crazy humour, vulnerability and openness in my business strategies going forward which is very exciting.
    What I got from this awesome look at branding is the importance of being self deprecating from and the way that I'm going to implement that is to incorporate more fun into how I do things going forward with rewards, events and words of appreciation.
    Thank you for your time and talent Marie, as fan-girly as it sounds I really do love your work!! ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

  33. I loved the transparency! Marie, you've mentioned you're introverted, how do you manage to talk so well? I would love to do the same and I'm a fun person, but I struggle to come across that way if I have a speech or would do a video like this. Should I do a class or something?

  34. hi Marieyou are a great speaker , I benefit a lot from your videos …thank you very much for your positive energy and wise guiding.I would like to ask for a video a bout how to invest in YouTube , tips and advices if you don't mind.regardssese bagi

  35. Oh, so they sent jobs overseas? That's not particularly positive but your video is great. Fun and full of good information!

  36. Honestly, I do love all the three strategies that Marie has been share. Thank you and hope we will get more videos about business ideas.

  37. I used to be shy to sell my services but now I've adjusted. I'm still improving but I'm happy to be on the right track. Thank you.

  38. I am about to start my business, thank you so much. Very inspiring video and the encouragement that came with it. I like point number one.

  39. Being authentic, I am quirky and that needs to come through on my videos and in my website, thank you!

  40. I love your parting words–so inspiring!
    This was an entertaining and instructive video.
    I will say the shirt company is an example of "know your audience" if you're branding-who will connect with your brand? If I read about parties and "s–" I'd be totally turned off from a brand. To my ear, it sounds lazy and juvenile, not fresh, and like a company that has atrocious customer service. But I'm not the audience for the shirts so it doesn't matter. To their audience, I'm sure that feels edgy and fresh.

  41. I am going to be more real with my customers, I'm going to share my very first logo the actual rough draft(drawn on paper) to the professionally designed jpeg of that logo redone by a professional graphic designer. The blank that we use, to the mockup i made on my phone to the finished sample, to what the finished product looked like on a model. COZY , Luxury hoodie is the Name of my brand and keeping our customers warm and comfortable is what we do. my instagram is @willvice_cozy follow me and stay tuned for more content ๐Ÿ˜Š

  42. I don't know what to do! Want to hear branding major student's Challenge and worries???
    Give advice for her

  43. Loved this, especially the being authentic and quirky in your brand. I would say as someone quite young and new in the industry, I naturally switch to 'professional' mode for people to take me seriously, so an interesting experiment will be next time I meet my clients to look at them as 'potential friends' I happen to work with, and see if I act differently.

  44. I'm most afraid to let people know about myself. Feel like im going to be judge and will make customer leave. The last part just made my night lol THANK YOU! Great tips.

  45. I love you. You got so much knowledge and also the way to deliver it. Thankyou so much ๐Ÿ˜Š watch you all videos and they add alot of knowledge in my mind. โค

  46. Love this video! Can you tell me if Copy Cure content is covered in the B School content? Iโ€™m about to sign up for B School but donโ€™t want to pay for both if I donโ€™t need to. Thanks

  47. Marie you've done it again/ Always love watching your videos. You are so polished in how you deliver your content ๐Ÿ™‚ And of course I always learn something new.

  48. A method that i used in driving presence into my brand was influencer marketing. I used phlanx as my platform for influencer marketing and for me , how influencer marketing works makes it a great way to kick start potential businesses/products/services/brands/people/etc out there

  49. Awesome video. ๐Ÿ˜
    1. Like this comment
    2. Subscribe to my channel
    3. Comment to get a sub back
    Let's grow together. ๐Ÿ’ฏ

  50. Hi Marie, 3 very easy and doable strategies to help move a biz to another level. The one I can work on now is to head over to my website, do some rewriting that will "real" up my voice! Thanks for your expertise and breaking actions down into "I can do this"!

  51. I am writing a personal excellence manual for a client and I was intrigued by your video because:
    1. You start with high impact and are very watchable with a good camera presence.
    2. You are brief, yet clear in what you say.
    3. You use relevant evidence.
    Thank you for the experience!

  52. That's really great….which is short and informative…..and I would like to implement all the three into my business. I hope your words will help me a lot๐Ÿป๐Ÿค—

  53. I think all 3 tips are great tips and to my surprise are more realistic and practical in a way that the books about professional business dont teach us. Like ive always thought about keeping my business a little quirky in nature and realistic but my sister (who is a business student) always tells me that its unprofessional

  54. SALES! Not being afraid to ask for the sale!!!! Our action step is to invite everyone after class to book their free assessment. Then ASK for the sale after the "discovery call".

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