The building blocks of a brand

These are the questions to ask that will help you build your brand.

Topic – Brand YOU

Mentor – Rob Ward

  • Use this software to define your brand
  • What does your brand ‘say’?
  • Defines your ideal customer

Developing your leadership style – Jacob Aldridge

Are you an entrepreneur, a leader, or a manager?



Kevin:   So what questions do you ask as you’re building your brand? This will help you identify the structure of your business. We’re talking brand this week with Rob Ward from Di Jones.

Kevin:   Rob let’s walk through a few of these.

Kevin:   In shaping the brand, you’ve got to have a clear picture about your customers and what they actually want from you, don’t you?

Rob Ward:   Absolutely. I think a great place to start, Kevin, if you’re thinking of building your own brand or if you’ve got an existing brand that perhaps you just want to understand where you’re heading, is get a big sheet of paper or a big white board out and just identify first of all, who is your perfect customer. You could describe that person and understand what they are looking for. So, that’s the first step. The second step is outlining what it is that you’re passionate about, what it is that you stand for and then making sure you deliver on that.

Rob Ward:   One of the exercises we went through recently just to make sure everyone was aligned was going through some perhaps strange questions but things like I asked the company, we ran a conference and we had Slido running which is a live polling piece of software, and I asked them if we were a country who would we be; if we were a watch, what sort of watch would we be; if we were a motor vehicle, what sort of motor vehicle would we be; if we were an actor in a movie, who would actually play us.

Rob Ward:   It was really interesting to see some of the responses that came of that. We were pretty much aligned but it helped me sort of target where we need to get to.

Kevin:   Were there any unusual answers to some of those questions?

Rob Ward:   Well one thing that came up very clearly is that we were definitely from Europe. We’re a European nation and that was good to know, so we’re on the right track there. They were somewhat confused whether we were British of we were French, but-

Kevin:   Can I just ask you then, Rob, how would that help you? When you said, “We’re on track.” What was your vision?

Rob Ward:   The brand came up from 1992 started in Woolahra and Di Jones was an avid Francophile so to see that undertones of perhaps the European, the boutique nature of that come through. It’s very pleasing to see that they understand that. It’s now perhaps just polishing that and refining where exactly we stand with them.

Kevin:   In asking these questions, did you at any stage look at your competitors and is that important or does that actually cloud the issue to think about them or should you just be thinking about you?

Rob Ward:   I think it’s good to understand your competitors. If you perhaps look at the motor vehicle is a good one to have a look at. We’re certainly not trying to be a Toyota brand that has a make and model for every person. We don’t want to sell mass markets or a lot of vehicles to everyone. We’re trying to have a more refined approached so perhaps with the two answers that came out when we ran this internally was that we’re perhaps an Aston Martin or a Mercedes Benz. So, we’re refined, luxurious. We meet the high end and we’re unique.

Kevin:   Let me then ask you about the brand position. We talked early in the week about Kodak and how they got that totally wrong. They thought they were there to make cameras and film when it was really all about memories. If they’d tapped into that … It sort of talks about what the company can solve and really if anyone cares about that.

Rob Ward:   A lot of people ask me, Kevin, “What type of houses do you sell? You only sell high end homes.” And what I say to them is, “The ideal person for us is someone who cares about how their property is marketed.” It doesn’t matter it’s a one bedroom apartment or a 10 million dollar mansion, but that’s the right customer for us if they care about how their property’s presented, how it’s handled, the experience they have along the journey and how it makes them feel selling their property. If they aspire to have that experience and have their property professionally marketed, professional photos, and are happy to invest in marketing, then that’s the right customer for us and it’s really important that our brand appeals to that type of person.

Kevin:   We talked at one stage this week about how real estate is not about property, it’s all about people, and there you are giving us a clear demonstration of where your brand sits. It’s not about the quality of the product, it’s about the quality of the person who’s having that product marketed and how it looks.

Rob Ward:   And also the value that they stand for, that they’re aligned with us and we both believe the same thing. If we’re sitting in a lounge room and they’re saying, “I actually would prefer to take my own photos,” or, “I don’t really believe in making it look right,” that’s okay. It’s not that they’re right and we’re wrong, it’s just that we’re not aligned and they’re perhaps not the right customer for us.

Kevin:   Wow. Great stuff. Tomorrow, we’re going to round this series out with Rob Wood from Di Jones who’ll talk about marketing and brand, how they should work together.

Kevin:   That’s tomorrow morning. We’ll talk to you then, Rob. Thank you.

Rob Ward:   Thank you again.


Leave a Reply