Episode #7: Interview With Ryan Kettering, CEO At Prolific Brand Design (Vendor Spotlight)


What is going on, everybody? We are here and we’re live. We are here for another episode of the Service Legends podcast. This is episode number seven with the Man, The Myth, The Absolute Legend. Ryan Kettering, welcome to the podcast, man.

Hey, thanks, man. It’s great to be here with you.

Yeah, man. And, you know, we got a couple people live here, it looks like. But if you guys are live, please just hashtag in the comments. Just hashtag live in the comments. That would help just get some more engagement in the comments and in our in our post here. And then you could also share this live. That would be incredible. So we can reach more concrete coding and painting business owners like yourself. So what’s going on, Russell? Awesome. I honestly believe, Ryan, like, in my opinion, you don’t need any introduction. Like, everyone should know exactly who you are and the amazing work that your company does. But if I had to, I would say that we have Ryan Kettering here. He’s a CEO and founder of prolific brand designs from the from the Chicago area, moved to A-Z a couple of years ago which is cool having you here local. And Ryan actually used to have his own carpet cleaning business so he’s he’s he’s not just some branding or marketing person that has no clue about what he’s branding for. He’s actually owned a home service business himself and really just looks like he got into the branding and fell in love with it. And he serves as the CEO, but also the strategist, creative director at the company and just has a real passion for serving home service companies from a from a branding perspective. Is that right?

Yeah. Yeah. The, the the strategy element really gets me going. Because I think that’s what people are really lacking today is they don’t the the world that we are in now, it’s amazing because it moves so fast, but it’s actually pushing people into places that in this world they would have rarely gotten to ten, 15, 20 years ago. And so being able to help people to understand how to navigate that, okay, you’re in all the right channels. You’re saying what appears to maybe be all the right things and you’re doing all the things you’re being told that you have to do to be successful, but you’re starting to plateau at a certain point or you’re having trouble standing out, differentiating your company. Those weren’t issues you had back in the day when you were just get the biggest yellow page ad and you’re done, you know? So it’s a little bit of a different world. But what’s cool is we can pull from industries that have been here for a really long time and understand how this all works. And then now we can start applying it to the small business today, which is just more it’s just it’s a really cool time to, to, I suppose, be a small business and work with small businesses because we’re just capable of so much more than we ever were.

Yeah, 100%. Like. And even with Kardinal, it’s been really fun. You know, I was I was actually doing an estimate or I, I kind of helped my dad do an estimate the other day for a pet resort that we ended up winning in Peoria, actually. And I pull it up. He has the Honda Civic. It’s wrapped. It’s fully wrapped. I mean, it just looks bad ass, man. Like, I mean I mean, I got to say it, you know, it just looks bad ass man is awesome. And we’re driving back from Peoria to Chandler for for lunch. And I mean, just people are just looking I mean, they’re just looking at and I’m behind my dad, you know, and people are just like looking slowing down and I’m like, it’s just a normal Tuesday.

That’s awesome. Yeah.

So the brand is, is for sure, like more important than it, than it once was back in the eighties, nineties and even early 2000. And I also think the brands have gotten more fun, you know, like with like the birds and with the mascots and just more vibrant colors. And I think it’s brought a lot of excitement into home service to them.

Mm hmm. Yeah. I mean, I think and I think some people like they think that that’s a nice thing to have to, like, be driving down the road and everybody seeing you and stuff like this. But if you’re a true entrepreneur, entrepreneurship is all about leverage. And like when, when, when you get in a business and you assemble a team and then you resell their essentially their time, their expertise, that the training that you’ve instilled in them, you’re reselling your packaging that reselling it to someone in the market. You’re leveraging some components to to do something else of higher value. And that’s really what entrepreneurship is about. But I think people don’t realize it’s not a nice thing to have some of this stuff. It’s it’s basically. It’s irresponsible not to because as a business owner, we need to leverage fully leverage everything that we have. And if you’re in a place, if you’re on the highway, you should be leveraging drive time like it’s one of the big killers for service businesses. Right. Why not leverage everything that we have available?

Yeah, it’s awesome, man. So. There’s most likely a lot of listeners that do not have the branding that you’re putting out right now and probably don’t understand the strategy or the processes. Maybe understand maybe they don’t understand the why. And maybe we can start from the beginning and and you can take this where you feel like you might want to take it, but like take it from the beginning, like, you know, like why is branding important? Why should we? We listen to prolific brand designs, talk about the need for a strategy, the need for a process. I think sometimes a lot of clients come in, Hey, I just want a logo. It’s like, okay, you know, hold on a second, you know? And there’s a lot more to the story, it seems like, from your perspective.

Yeah. You know, so, yeah, people come to us because they see a logo or they see a vehicle wrap, and that’s that’s kind of a sexy outward part and that kind of brings them into our world. And then we sort of back them up into, you know, yes, you should have all those things that are professional. But how do you how do you know what is the right thing if if you’re not really sure exactly who you are, exactly what you stand for? And ultimately, if you want to create communication in the market, that’s different from what everyone else is doing. The reality is, even if another business, let’s just take concrete, cardinal concrete, even if let’s just say that your process is definitely better. Well, maybe somebody could secret shop you. They can break down your process. They could actually deliver the exact same process in the same way, same products, etc.. And so it’s, it’s not difficult to copy someone else, but in reality, we’re all many times learning from the same kind of key training areas and outlets and schools and this sort of thing. So we end up with the same service right at the end of day, like the work that we do. I mean, it’s not like I invented graphic design or branding or anything like that, right? So. No, hold.

On a second. You know, I would I would I would I would disagree. I would say I would say you did know.

So it’s really just like the Simon Sinek book talks about like start with why it’s the how and the why in which we do things that allows us to create an experience that’s different and that resonates with people in a different way and hopefully with our ideal client in an ideal way, right? So but you can get the really cool different experiences that no one else is either willing to do or, or they can’t do because it’s just it doesn’t line up with, with who they are, how they are, what they believe in. You know, an example I use a lot is with Chick fil A that their drink stations are behind the counter instead of in front of the counter because they’re not a self serving company. They’re they want to be an example of serving others. So they’ve systematically altered the experience to where it’s impossible to serve yourself in that restaurant, whereas every other fast food chain restaurant, it’s impossible not to do the other way, right? Because they look at every other business, would see that and say, Well, that’s a waste of money.

It costs too much for us to serve people when they can serve themselves. You know, you have McDonald’s doing the kiosks now in order on your own. You don’t even talk to anybody. But it’s not a cost. It’s an investment in the way that they want to do business. But the reality is, if another business like McDonald’s or something like that, pick that up, it actually would cost because it’s not in line with how they view the world, how they do business, what their clients actually want. And and so what’s cool is when you can get to a place of creating a unique brand, a unique brand experience, it’s really not copy able because if someone tries to copy it, it won’t work for them. And so it allows you to really own who you are in the market. And then the visuals that we create are intended to be a representation that is is appropriate for that brand and helps you to visually communicate clearly and stand out as well so that you can kind of unpack your messaging to the to the client from there.

Yeah, it’s amazing, man. I love I love the I love the Chick-Fil-A reference because I talk about it here too. And Jeff Jarrett was on the podcast a couple weeks ago and he and he always talks about, hey, this is how we make fries. So like in and out can make fries this way and McDonald’s can make fries this way, and they might even be decent fries and I might like them, but this is how we make fries. And there’s a process to how those fries are made, and there’s a process to how we deliver those fries. And so it makes total sense. And that’s what I tried to do with Kardinal, too. And and also service legend from a fulfillment perspective, is really figuring out those those aspects now. Do you so do you think most people come to this like this this this concept of branding when they first start their companies? Or is it like years after? And they’re like, oh yeah, like I should probably think about my branding.

Yeah. So it’s really interesting because I’ll be honest, there’s people that are starting their business that. It’s not the right time for them to brand. I know everyone would say, man, you know, like I did a short video with Tommy Melo that’s on my page, I think. And he’s like, I tell everybody, you know, brand from the beginning. And there’s a lot of validity to that. But what we’re doing is we’re looking back and we’re saying, you know, if I would have had this at the beginning, the issue is that for a lot of people starting up, they don’t have the ability to to act. They don’t know who they are and they haven’t figured out they haven’t gotten good. And you have to get good and arguably maybe even great before you can get creative. Right. And so you have to follow the process that you’re learning from others. You have to get a good system in place and then start putting your spin on it. Because the problem is that before you get the basics down, it’s impossible to test out variations of your own. And so although it would be nice to launch a brand right away, most people, it’s not in their hierarchy of needs yet. They just don’t they don’t have if you don’t have any business coming in the door, you’re not worried about your brand experience, your customer experience, how you look. You’re worried about like, I need to get some money in the door, right? So it’s kind of in that same way that like even for us personally, like as we move through our professional careers, you know, you can you have the leeway to, to look for how do I make a bigger impact? How can I make the interactions with my team members and customers more impactful, more memorable? Those aren’t things you’re worried about if you’re waiting on the next paycheck to come in.

Right. And so, you know, I think there is a little bit of a hierarchy of needs there to where people sometimes aren’t ready at the beginning. And we have people come in that are like, I really want this thing, I need this thing. And we know their whole situation. We’re like, maybe we should do this, this and this first. And then that’ll line you up to be able to then now go into this. But we have it’s really cool because with all the information, I do have younger guys that come in that are starting in their mid twenties and huge dreams and they actually do understand this stuff. So it depends on kind of your your own sort of business IQ and you know, your own sort of, I don’t know, emotional IQ or whatever they call IQ or IQ or whatever. But, you know, but it’s all about like. People want to rebrand when they get to basically kind of two things, they start to plateau with their communications. So I’m in all the right channels, but I’m starting. Why can’t I? This isn’t scaling any further, right? It’s starting to plateau. There’s not really any hard reasons for that or, you know, everything’s going well. But I would like to I would like to do better. I would like to make a bigger impact. I would like to figure out how we can. Do something that’s more meaningful than what we’re doing right now, you know? Yeah.

And so, yeah, I think not everybody is there right at the beginning because they haven’t plateaued with their marketing and they’re not thinking about kind of the deeper applications as to what they’re doing. In the beginning, it’s it’s kind of like a honeymoon stage. Like you don’t have to think like just like in a marriage, like you’re not thinking about the long term stuff that really is in a marriage that’s the most fulfilling because you’re just not you’re not at a place where you can experience that yet. And so, you know, yeah, it’s a little bit of a honeymoon stage for business owners and and they’re just not it’s not on their radar. And for those that that people ask me, when’s the best time to rebrand? Typically, once it is on your radar and if these things are making sense, then it very well could be the right time. Right. But for some people and they probably aren’t here because with the the talk we’re having and stuff like that, they would have probably popped off. But if you hear all this stuff and it doesn’t make any sense, it’s probably not the right time. But if it’s making sense, then that’s where you are starting to think about these things. You’re seeing the the type of issues that I’m talking about and the things I’m saying would make a lot of sense, you know what I mean? So I think once you become aware of it, that’s really the time that you should be doing it, because you won’t. Even if I say it, you won’t. It won’t hit. It won’t sink in unless it is that right time, you know. Yeah.

It’s almost like that self like like that business IQ. It’s like that self awareness of the business from the entrepreneur, kind of knowing like what move to take. I know for us at Cardinal it will. Our bird was was was terrifying. So that’s number one. And it was scaring little kids away. No. But it was a very scary looking bird that we I think we paid like, I don’t know, maybe 500 bucks for. And so that was always over our shoulders. But we also were stepping into a world where we we wanted to professionalize the industry. We wanted to professionalize our business. We want to bring in higher talent. And we were we were just really just taking it to the next level. And I knew that the branding was not anywhere near kind of that vision, you know. So that kind of what was for us. I mean, I think we were in business maybe a year and then and then we hired you guys and it was one of the best decisions that we’ve ever made in the business was, was to hire prolific and just for everyone listening to whether you guys are live on the replay.

If you’re a service legend client, there are special discounts for prolific brand design packages in the Service Legend Academy. So if you guys just go to the vendor village, you guys don’t find access to that there. And if you’re not a client, you want to first become a client and then get access to the discounts. No, but you guys can hit up prolific right away. They are just I mean, just go look at Cardinal’s branding, go look at our website, go go look at some of the portfolios that they’ve done. So in terms of like the process, I think a lot of home service business owners, specifically coding, painting, they do think that it’s like, hey, I just want a better logo or and could you talk a little bit about the like the identity process that I mean, I know it was like 2 hours and like for me and it was like. It was so like revealing just for me. Can you talk about that a little bit and how like. Like why that’s important and kind of what that process looks like, too?

Yeah. Yeah. I want to. Let me mention one more thing before we move into that. With with with the value of of what it’s doing, because you’re just you’re kind of stirring some things up in my head as you were talking about the branding, getting it to where a place where we could then take off with it. And we’re in a really the world is noisier than ever. Like people think that there’s more going on than ever. That’s not true. There’s always a lot of stuff going on. You know.

There’s just more news about it now.

We have a lot more information about what’s going on. And so it’s just really, really noisy out there. And so really the the branding, what it does to aid in the marketing is it’s all about getting meaningful, clear communication to clients faster, right? So like you’re talking about like before, it wasn’t that important that your truck stood out in the road because you didn’t, you know, you had all your yellow pages leads coming in and and you were good to set to go. And and then later on, people started to get it more advanced with sales and certain direct marketing campaigns. But we just it wasn’t as important to take advantage of everything because there wasn’t as much competition, there wasn’t as much noise. It was a lot easier for us to understand, identify and make choices. And now, you know, I think that’s what a lot of this allows us to communicate more meaningful in earlier stages of communication with clients, get the attention that we want and help people really understand why we’re the best decision to go with and to kind of segway into the process that we take in order to do that. It’s really you know, I look at branding as visual communication, right? It’s it’s about assembling information in a way that is most efficient. You know, like the old quote, I don’t know if it was Mark Twain or I can’t remember who said it. But, you know, if I had if I had more time, I would have written you a shorter letter.

You know, how do I how do I put out information in the world that is as efficient as it can be, as effective as it can be to get to my goals because of that short attention span or that over information age that we’re in and so getting to, well, what are we trying to say and why are we trying to say it? And what are we trying to do aside from just make more money? Because at some point, once your hierarchy of needs, once you’ve, you know, you’ve have a good team going, you know, you’re making good money, you’re not personally worrying about it. Your team members are getting compensated. Well, you know, you’re going to start to at some point the next $100 to use the next is the same as make an extra 1000. And at some point later than that, it’s the same as 10,000. So when you get to the point when $100, say seeing $100 ding on your sales thing or 1000 is the same as 10,000 or whatever, you start to think about the deeper applications as to what’s going on. And so, you know, so that’s what we’re really trying to figure out is, all right, well, who are you? What do you want to accomplish aside from the money? Like, yeah, everybody wants to increase the value we’re creating in our with our teams, for our teams, for our market.

But why and how and how were you? What is unique about you that allows you to to kind of that we can leverage so that we can allow you to get in front of more of the right people. I believe that everyone is unique, that we were created individually unique and that we have certain aptitudes, certain abilities and the potential for each of us. And so it’s it’s the issue is that without without a mirror, you won’t you would never know what you look like if you’ve never seen your reflection. You would have no way of knowing what you look like. So that’s what we do in those that initial clarity and strategy call is we basically are a mirror. I always tell people like we don’t create brands, we help to clarify and define brands, and then we create a visual brand system. That communication, that visual communication to go to represent that. But you already have a brand. You are you. We just need you to be more of you, right? So what we do is we draw out what are those unique things, what’s the purpose, what’s the intentions, what are you trying to accomplish? What are your key aptitudes, your personality, your core beliefs, that sort of thing. And now we can actually help to give some clarity around that so that you can have those really cool touchpoints. Like Chick-Fil-A was saying, Hey, we’re not we’re not going to do this thing in a self serve manner or a friend of mine here locally, like they have Santa Claus come out to their shop, their storefront.

They do flooring sales around Christmastime and have hundreds of people come out. If you ask any marketer, no one, no one. If you say just random marketer on online and say, Well, what should I do for marketing in Q4? No one’s going to tell you to hire Santa Claus, right? Not one of them. Yeah. But knowing what your purpose is and your the what’s important to you and what you’re trying to accomplish and the market you want to leave and then acting on that, that’s. How you get some really cool things that you can do with your business that end up paying off monetarily, very big. So the discovery and the clarity strategy call that we do, it’s about figuring that stuff out, letting and then people leaving actually for the very first time understanding who they are with more clarity, understanding what makes them different. What are the key aptitudes that I can apply? Giving them some tips on how they can fully leverage uniquely who they are. And then we get to work on the visuals from there. But we’re really trying to send them out in the world with the ability to look through their own unique brand lens and create some really cool stuff from that.

Yeah, man, that is it’s so amazing. And if you guys are listening and. You have no clue about anything, right? Insane. You might want to go back like five, 10 minutes and then just re listen because I remember when you first we first sat down and I think I said, no, no, no, we’ve seen the logo. You’re like, Well, no, no, no. Like, we need more time. And I remember like my pride get in the way. I’m like, Oh, you know, no, you know, I’m pretty solid on what I want, you know, and, and so it is some self for like, like reflection and just being honest with ourselves around what we’re really trying to do. And it’s really not just having a cool looking brand. Like that’s what I first thought when I wanted to rebrand. I was like, I just want to be cool and X, Y and Z. It was so much deeper than that. And we were able to build. Things like this. If you guys can see this and Kettering and his team didn’t build this, but with the branding guidelines that we had, we were able to build this and it and it was amazing, you know, and the branding guidelines that we were able to get. Just the just the detail that we were able to get that we could pass along to other like level two designers or what have you has been instrumental for us to, to create different branding like stuff I guess.

Creates a continuity. It’s like an inherent continuity. And, you know, that’s why people hate designers because they expect designers to be able to to strategize and come up with a designer’s. You know, it’s kind of like a technician out installing one of your floors. It’s like the the technician. It’s not their responsibility to figure out how it applies to the client’s life. Sell that thing. Think about other ways that you know. Oh, have you thought about doing it this way? Do you know if you did this with your garage, you could do this, this and this based off your goals. Like that’s strategy, that’s sales, that’s like a whole new thing than installing a floor. And people hire designers and they think that they’re going to. But if you hire a designer, that’s the technician. It’s your responsibility to come up with the strategy, what should be done, and all of that stuff. And so that’s where we take it back and we’re like, This is how the strategy is actually done. So you think you’re hiring our designer, you’re actually going to be hiring someone that can create your. Help you to create an actual brand. And then now you can work with designers and scale out that visual stuff because now you’ve already thought it all through. And I think really any marketing company should be going through a lot of these steps. But, but they don’t. So we, you know, we help with the branding side and then and then we leave more of like the clarity on like sort of the, the, the client problem and solution, that sort of thing. Like that’s where I think a lot of marketers kind of advise a little bit more, but we’re really trying to help guide like the overall deeper intentions of a brand. And then, like you said, set them up with everything they need so they can hand it off to those other people. Get some additional advisement on how to do individual, how do I do this specific campaign and so forth.

So yeah, yeah. Well, I, I can, I can tell you the clients that have branding like Cardinal, you know, a lot of our clients have had their branding done by you and your company. And I can tell you, the clients that have the branding taken to the next level there, their ads perform better, their website gets higher, conversion rates, they get better reviews. More reviews. I mean, it’s just more and more, more, better, better, better. And so it’s definitely an investment into the business. So. Okay, so. The concrete coating owners, painting owners, they meet with you. They do a you call it a clarity session. What is it called?

Yeah, it’s you know, it’s it’s clarity and strategy, you know. So we get clear on the brand. Let’s be clear on who you are. And then we talk about some ways that you can apply that. And then the smallest part of the call is talking about the visuals. So, you know, it doesn’t take a lot of discovery to figure out what to do once we know intimately who somebody is. Right. Right. And it’s just like it’s just like I can’t remember what marketer or whoever said it, but, you know, they said if if you can know your customers needs and fears better than they know themselves, if you can articulate it better than they can themselves, then they’ll trust you. Right? And so that’s kind of what we do. But we’re not it’s not that we know what they who they are or their fears or their desires. It’s that we just ask. We ask the right questions. The questions are a whole lot more important than answers. And so we’re able to just navigate helping them to understand who they are. And in that journey, we then understand who they are. And it’s pretty easy to figure out how to okay, well, how do we want to kind of portray this brand now that we know exactly who they are? If you think about any just like kind of a personality of some sort of character, some sort of let’s just take, for instance, Darth Vader. Like you don’t have to know what he looks like to describe like who he is or vice versa.

Like if we create a sort of if we can paint a picture of who someone is, what they’ve gone through in their life, you can actually you can tell what they’ll do next. And this is what if you can create that within your company, all of a sudden the problem of nobody can do anything in the way I want want that to be done. Or man, you know, I just have so many fires to put out as a business owner because no one can do the job right and stuff like that. Well, it’s because we’re not empowering them to to think like our brand, our personality thinks, you know what I’m saying? So once we can help to clarify and define that, we can actually empower them by saying, this is who we are, this is what we believe, this is how we act. And then if they have a problem that they can’t figure out, the first question would be what would what? Knowing X, Y and Z about us? What do you think would be the best way to how would a company like ours do this right? Act as if and they can come up with some really much more creative ideas than they did before, because before they were relying on what they how they perceive the world alone, now they can be part of a unit, you know?

Yeah, I love that man. And. I can tell you that after going through the process, it definitely made me as the CEO of the business, way more confident in the brand and being able to, I guess, share that vision of the brand long term. Do you find that going through this process, your clients are more confident about the business and what they’re doing?

Yeah, and I think it’s like they’re fulfilling. They’re fulfilling a thing that they didn’t know that they needed. Like, for instance, like if you play a sport and you never like just say played basketball and you were on the, you know, you’re on the court most games, but you literally never scored a point for your team. You’re going to have a really tough time getting going in the next game, finishing out that season, going again next year because you’re.

Not getting any. A marco and I. My business partner at at the marketing company yeah we go golfing every Wednesday morning for a partner meeting and we went this morning and I and I smashed him. By the way, I’m not sure if he’s listening, but it’s probably something like that I imagine.

Yeah, right. You know, if you don’t, if you’re not winning. You can’t move on. But the thing is that most of us do get these little wins right. And so it kind of keeps us going. But we don’t realize how much that that one shot that one point. It propels us into the next thing. And so the brand is something that many people before they have, if they’ve not really heard of this, they don’t understand the outcome and the win that they’ll get and how that propels them. Just the same way that you don’t understand how much like that that that getting X amount of points that that helps that one game. And collectively as we go along that path.

It’s what propels.

You into the future. The wins give us the confidence and make us feel like we are able and that we’re we’re moving. And, you know, if you’re if you’re if you feel lazy or sluggish one day, it’s if you think about it, you’re probably just have been not winning for a bit of time. And if you can get some win wins under your belt, it’s going to propel you in the future. Right. And if you look at great companies and great brands out there, they invest in their brand. You know, it’s not it doesn’t happen on accident and and big brands they invest a lot, you know, like, you know, millions and millions and tens and millions. And even some companies have over $100 million just to do a brand refresh. And there’s you know, there’s a lot more complexity at that level that we won’t go into here. But the the great brands invest in their selves and they’re getting they’re able to get the wins that come from that. And as a small business owner, we’re just starting to understand the stuff to the level of where people are like, Yeah, I think this is for me. And then they do it and then it starts. They get these wins that they never even knew were out there, you know what I mean? So imagine, you know, you’re in the sports game and you’re like you you think that you have to do this to win. All sudden you figure out this new technique where now you’re winning and it feels like almost like you’re cheating. You know what I’m saying? Because and so that’s like you’re like, wow, this is you know what I mean? So that’s how I think kind of what you’re talking about is like before it all, it’s like, I want a cool logo. I know it might do a cool thing, but you don’t actually understand the value of it until you’re on that other side and it propels you into that next stage.

Yeah. And my LA, I watch his podcast a lot and he and he he he kind of coined it. It’s, if you want to gain confidence, you have to keep the promises you make to yourself, you know, personally. So it’s like, hey, if I’m going to start working out and then I don’t start working out, well then you’re just a liar to yourself. And like, that just is such a discouragement on when it comes into weeks, months, years. And I think it’s the same thing for the business where we are like, Man, my business is amazing and we’re sharing this vision and we’re telling the customers this and but it’s like from a visual perspective to the to the to the marketplace, it’s not, you know, and there’s that disconnect. And I can tell you, there’s been customers that thought we were some huge franchise, you know, and we have we have three, three crews here locally, you know, three trucks and three crews, etc.. And we definitely look a lot bigger than we are. You know, we’re everywhere, you know, and so that’s that’s that’s that’s pretty cool now. Okay, so so there’s a discovery session. There’s confidence there. Now, can you talk about like some of the like way that you guys deliver some of the materials and just and just like the like the pro scapes or like pro skate mockups and like the depth that you guys go into with the guidelines. I mean, it’s not this isn’t fiber, this isn’t Upwork, this isn’t your, you know, your your buddy that’s helping you out with with graphic design. I mean, this is the real deal.

Yeah. I wish I had, like, your stuff up that I could bring up, but I don’t want to keep people waiting. But. Yeah, so, I mean. We? With the stuff that we did for your company. And I’m not going to go through and find this. I just flip to this page. This is Brandon’s thing. But like, we’re we put together, like, different visuals to kind of help people. Part of what working with contractors and service business owners is like. You know, people have a hard time envisioning like. Envisioning like what? Well, I see the logo, but, like, I don’t know if I like it, you know, and. Oh, thanks, man. I just saw a comment there from Ryan at Royal. They have a problem, a tough time envisioning what is what is what is the application here? What is it going to look like next or whatever? So we just our process, we try to show people along the way what it’s going to look like. So if you do it like a mascot, like you did, we start out with sketches and I kind of give some context like, Hey, I know we’re asking you for use a little imagination here, but bear with us and then we quickly get into the color stuff.

Yeah, there’s the brand guidelines and, and so we’re showing kind of unpacking this brand as we go through with them and helping them to envision what’s going to happen so that we can keep them engaged and excited about what’s going on because it’s really easy. So we’re kind of coaching them through it in a way, but also with the visuals and stuff, it’s, it’s easy to. To fall into like, man, I’m not sure it’s a big decision. And, you know, I don’t want to make the wrong decision. So we’re kind of guiding people through that with just with the way that we’re interacting them, but also the graphics and then the brand guidelines you’re showing there with that Multipage document. That’s what’s delivered at the end. And and what you’re talking to about before is like we have Pantone colors for you and CMYK colors and probably stuff that people don’t even outside of the graphics world don’t know.

But I mean, the idea is that a design team that was doing a bunch of stuff for us and I’m like, Look, I have no clue about any of this stuff, but like, hey, I know you’re going to need all this. And they’re like, Oh my gosh, like, dude, thank you so much for this. It’s going to make our job so easy. And I’m like, So does that mean it’s cheaper now or what?

Probably not, but it means you’re going to get.

Yeah, no, it wasn’t. It wasn’t.

Yeah. So it’s all documented with that stuff. You know, the there’s a patterns and colors and typefaces and all of this is documented in every brand that we do. And so then I always just tell me, like, just send them everything. Like just just send this whole thing and you’ll, you’ll see whoever you’re working with, with your graphics and it’s stuff that Yeah. You wouldn’t even the average person doesn’t even know what the stuff is, but just send it over and it helps you to create basically instant continuity, cohesion between things. It’s, it’s much more efficient now. And all of a sudden you can work with kind of that mid-level designer and get what you want. And before you couldn’t write because now you just have all the documentation to where they understand what’s going to happen, you know?

Yeah. Design guidelines are key for marketing 100%. It’s like like I was saying, the clients that have branding like this or anything close to this, it’s so much easier for us know, I mean, because I know the consumers on the on the other end of that campaign or that are those website visitors are going to have such a better experience because like what you said when we first started the pod, it’s like branding is just simply I guess it’s like it’s like it’s like a non-verbal communication, you know. And so it’s like I can tell the customers if I’m in the home, Hey, man, we’re great. Our process is this X, Y and Z. But if somebody sees our brand, they’re going to know that by just looking at our website, our brochure or our branding that also helps. Our mascot is nice and warm and cuddly versus looks like he’s going to kill you. But but like, I mean, it’s it’s a it’s just a no brainer. So I love all of this.

I want to mention one thing that you told me. You just said. You said that like the branding isn’t like what you say, but it’s kind of this nonverbal what you say is part of your brand, too. But this is really interesting. I was just thinking about this, is that I think the issue for most service business owners and just small business owners in general is we rely way too much on what we say, right? So it’s like we’re many times most of us are kind of like natural salespeople, you know, as the business owners, maybe not the technicians, but like as a business owners, we’re kind of you know, we wear a lot of hats, but we’re able to sell our way into getting in the business and getting the right people and trying to get in front of the right customer and stuff like this. But we’re relying way too much on our words, the words that are coming out of literally a singular mouth. And so our scalability really breaks down right after it starts to get wider than us. And so, yeah, it’s like we rely way on too much on everything that I’m doing. And so this gives you start to give you that framework that can, can actually build scalability. And not only that is that I don’t care how much you coach people, it’s like you get to a point where like, why? But why didn’t they know what to say? Like, why can’t they figure out what to say? And it’s that they, they understand what you’re telling them to say, but they don’t understand why why you’re saying that.

Right. And so it’s this level of depth and then also adding in the visuals and being able to have like a much like wider foundation to our communication, not just like because that’s a problem. It’s honestly, most people get jobs because they’re able to be like quick on their feet on the phone. That’s it. Like, literally, like it’s answer the phone and like be able to kind of navigate that phone call. But without that, you go on their website and a lot of times the recommendations that we’re giving to people on how they can increase their communication efficiency of their communication stuff, it’s like, you know, you just told me all this stuff about your business and I would not have known that if I was on your website. I wouldn’t have known that if I was in your Facebook. I wouldn’t have known that except for you told me. Right. And so we’re relying on what we’re saying a whole like way too much. We need to deliver those implied and explicit promises a lot earlier to the client before we’ve ever talked to them. And then the when you talk to them, it’s like now you’re just like confirming like it’s basically just like your whole brand sells the thing for you, you know?

Yeah, man, I love this. And if you guys are watching live, if you’re listening on Apple or Spotify later on or if you’re on the replay here somewhere, just hashtag in the comments, hashtag branding if you think this is awesome because for me, just, just, just doing this is getting me excited about branding something again. I’m like, man, let’s brand something. We are starting the, the concrete coding and painting inner circle and mastermind. It’ll be launching what I can’t say it actually it relaunching soon and it’s very exciting. We have two coaches secured and so we got some branding going on that will probably be hitting up there. But just this whole concept of branding is amazing. So. How about Mascot? What are your thoughts on Mascot? No mascot in today’s world?

Yeah. So most technical questions are going to come to the same answer, which is that it depends. Right. But, you know, mascots are a great way. You know, it’s if you know, there’s been studies that like if you open up a magazine page and you’re scanning, you know, studies show that the eyes have a heat map, right. So we kind of focus in on faces and eyes and things like this. You even know you’ve probably seen a car before where you’re like kind of looks like a fake face at the front of this car. You know, it doesn’t look like a face. It looks like a face to you because your brain sees faces everywhere and stuff like that, or like the face on the moon thing. Like, you know, that’s not a face on the moon. You’re just it looks like a face on the moon to us. But a dog wouldn’t look at it and say, Oh, it looks like a face. You don’t say so, you know, we have this sort of trait that we just inherently have in our DNA that we see faces everywhere. And so it can be a great way to grab attention and have this instant personality that comes through. Like, you know, if you put your logo on, like literally if you just put it on a blank sheet of paper and that was it, you still have personality coming through, whereas somebody else that doesn’t have the mascot logo, they might not have that same effect. Now, does that mean everybody should have a mascot because of that? No, because it’s not.

You know, there are certain brands that they may be maybe they want a certain boldness to their brand that if it comes out in a mascot, might be too aggressive. Or maybe maybe if you think about the business name and what they’re trying to accomplish, that there’s really not a mascot that would tie into that to communicate very, very well. Maybe you go after a commercial market and you want to have a little bit more of a understated sort of like you don’t want it to come off as fun and that sort of upbeat and kind of a residential more of a consumer focused brand. Maybe you want to kind of portray yourself in this way, right? And so, you know, just the same way that if you ask me if if you were asking me what I should wear today, it would be much more important than that as to what am I going to do and who am I going to do it with. Probably what you wore to the golf course and what you wear at work and what you wear on the weekend and what you wear to a wedding are all different things. So it depends on the situation that we’re in, but in our business we’re generally going to be in the same situation most times. And so it’s like what’s what’s most appropriate for us to wear all the all of the time in general. And there’s sometimes we get outside of that regular ideal customer sometimes or whatever a little bit, but that’s kind of the goal there.

And so for Brown like yours, you found like, Hey, this is how we want to portray ourselves all the time. For other brands, it’s going to be a little bit different and there’s really no right or wrong. It’s it’s like it depends. And but I think for for for companies like what you have and basically like they’re focusing on specifically the garage floor coating side of the coatings business, whereas a consumer focus thing, mascots can definitely be helpful if, if it’s a good fit for that client. And because again the consumer brands that’s why if you look at if you think about the brand of a a consumer food product versus a restaurant that is intended to be like like something like a morton steak house or what with a capital grille. Those are intended to be places for kind of like. People to go. They like kind of have these higher level business dealings and stuff like this. Like it’s supposed to be something different. They don’t they’re not going to have like Ronald McDonald as their mascot. Right. So it just it depends on the type of feel that we’re trying to create for our ideal client. And I think in many cases for the people that are like know doing things similar to you, it can definitely be good because they’re going to have a similar type of market focus as you are, which is a consumer market, which this does feel quite appropriate for as long as it’s appropriate for that particular brand as well.

And probably which is even more, more, more merit behind the the strategy process, you know, because figuring out what are your goals with the brand? Yeah, I love this a lot. What else is important here when it comes to branding for concrete coding and painting? Because, you know, we’ve talked a lot about strategy and some confidence and some framework stuff and some some high level stuff. Like, why should you know? Why should somebody really invest in their branding? Like, why? Like, why would someone take out their credit card and hire prolific? Like, why is it that important?

There’s only there’s only there’s only one reason. And it’s basically your goals. What? What? You know, if you want to have a successful company, look at other successful companies. How do they get there? You don’t. I always remember, like Jeff Bezos, like, you know, when he started Amazon. Yes. You have to be a little bit more sort of nimble and frugal. You know, kind of be careful in the beginning. But when you start. When he started Amazon, he started $1,000,000,000 company, you’re saying. So it depends on what your goals are. Right. So if you want to always be where currently what you’re doing, then you’re already there. You’re doing it, you’re making it, you’re living it. Right? But if your goals are at a different place than that, you should be that company today, you know? Who you are does not change based on your circumstances. So if it does, then, you know, you just you’re really more discovering who you are and acting differently later. But what I’m saying is that if you have big goals for your company, you need to understand what does it take to get there and start living that today? And for some people, if they’re starting out with $5, -$5 in the bank or something, you know, because this is the new pivot in their life and whatever, you know. Yeah. Like you’re not going to be able to do everything that you want to do today, but you can still act to the to the greatest stability that you can at that. You can still learn about branding. Even if you don’t get a professional logo today, you can still learn about how to create a unique customer experience.

You can still learn about yourself in a way that can apply it. And so when somebody is like talking to us and they’re trying to figure out if it’s the right thing to do, the number one question I asked them to kind of qualify them for me and for themselves for for doing it. It’s like if this isn’t worth $100,000 to you or 500,000 to you or $1,000,000 to you, don’t do it. You know? So when we’re selling a product that’s, say, $10,000 or $15,000 or whatever for for this whole thing that we’re talking about, you know, if it ain’t worth 100 grand, you just don’t do it. And if it is, it makes a whole lot of sense to make 110,000 on an investment for $100,000. Right. I’ll take that exchange every day. And so that’s really what it comes down to, is that with the goals that you have in mind, is this acting in cohesion? Is this acting out really who you already are? Right. And if that’s the case and it’s and it’s going to be worth it to you, then go for it. If it’s not the case, then don’t go for it. And and we we aggressively try to sell people off of it because we do creative work that is very can be very subjective to people. And if somebody’s not ready for what we’re talking about, we absolutely are trying to figure that out so that we can try to get them to what they need to be doing right now that they are ready for right now and not going down the road of wasting each other’s time because they’re not really there yet, you know? And for me, I’ll be honest, like, again, it’s the hierarchy of needs because.

You know, I had to get to a certain place with money before it didn’t become a need to where I was starting to think about deeper things. And that’s where if you get if you to me, if you make a certain amount of money unless I don’t know, I just money is something where you think it’s worth a lot more than it is, but you also think it’s worth a lot less than it is. And you get to a certain places in where you make this first X amount of money a year and you’re like, Wow, that was a lot less than I thought. But it’s also like I’m living pretty good. So it’s also a little bit more than I thought in ways. And it’s, it’s really kind of weird. But you get to a place where it’s like, you know, I don’t know, you know, then you double that and you’re like, nothing really changed. So like, if I double it again, is my life really going to be that much better? And you have everything you need and more so it’s like, no, it probably won’t be that much better if I double my income. So I really start to look at, well, well, what am I doing this for then? And now you start to think about the overall impact.

And the cool thing is that the greater impact you make, the greater your money grows anyways. So you’re actually going to contribute if you’re driven by you want to do bigger amounts of revenue for yourself or your team, whatever, because that’s what I’m more focused on, is I want to be able to create opportunity for my team because I feel like I have everything I need personally. My family’s needs are met. I want to be able to create more opportunity ahead of our team members, and that’s why I push the opportunity for myself. And so, you know, and also trying to live out our purpose and instilling that sense of that. But so understanding these deeper things is what really drives me. But when I was scraping for every dollar, it just was not even it was not even on my radar, you know. And I was looking at many times the wrong thing. So I hope, like, some of this resonates with somebody to to where they’re like, Yeah, I was trying to figure out sales, but that doesn’t make any a lot of sense because I don’t have enough leads. And I’ve been trying to look at marketing because I’m trying to get more leads, but now I’m realizing that I’m saying the same things as everybody else. And I don’t I’m not really I’m kind of just building the same thing that everybody else has. And if you’re not building a company that the market would be that your ideal customers would actually be upset if you were to be removed from that market.

You really you’re not adding much to the market, so you’re not really adding a lot of value. And. I don’t know. I have kind of a thing against like me two companies because I just look at people, they’re trying to build the exact same thing as somebody else. And it’s like, why? Like who? Like somebody else is already doing it. Like, why does the market need you? And, you know, usually we do it first because we just want money in our pockets. But the cool thing is that you can be in any industry and you can make that shift once your needs are met. Because we all get into business like, well, I got to make money, I got to feed my family, I got to feed myself. But you can make that shift where you start to do something. Even if you started a me too company, you can absolutely dive then into who you are and make it not a me to company. Make it a company that stands out from everything else out there and become so relevant to the market that they would be upset if you were to be removed. And that’s one of the things that pain me about my first business is I started to realize that if I if I was to get out of that space, no one would care. And when you’re doing something every single day, you’re putting you’re pouring your soul out into this thing that literally. No, what he cares about. Like what I’m saying. Like, it’s.

It just.

Really it really got to me to where, like, I wanted to do something that was more meaningful with my time and with my energy. And again, this is one of those things that, like, I’m I’m getting that win, shooting that hoop, getting that at that point, that wind that I never knew existed. I didn’t know that that wind was even there. And then and then now you start winning in these ways that are much more meaningful and like serves you at your soul and you’re able to serve you better. Like I said, the best. If you’re want to make more money, cool, because you’re going to do a lot more of that just like that. Zig. Zig Ziglar quote If you want to make $1,000,000, just help a million people, you know, whatever, something like that anyways. But, you know, the more that you can truly serve people, the more you’re going to get. So you’re just doing something of higher value and the higher value that you put out into the market, the higher reward. So this will serve somebody that wants to still drive revenue in their company. You’re going to drive way more revenue than ever before, but you’re also you’re going to be feeding your team. You’re going to be feeding them directly into their soul and your customers.

You know, you’re going to get to really cool customer stories that you never, never would have. You’re going be able to involve your team in new marketing, things that you’ve never been able to do that you never would have thought of before. You know, like why Tesla? They’ve never they haven’t spent $1 on marketing, right? But they do things like tell GM and Ford and all these people were like, hey, here’s our patents for the batteries. You guys can take them and run with them. We want you to take them. Our patents are yours. Who does something like that? Nobody. That’s differentiation. Like when you can get to certain things in your business. Like, who does this? No one. Us. We’re the only people that would ever do something like this. That’s when you know you’re doing something really special and people want to talk about that, you know, you that it’s remarkable in the in the definitive definition of way of the word like that is remarkable. People want to talk about it and that’s how you can like just blaze a fire for your brand. And whatever you’re trying to do is to get people talking when you do the same thing as anybody else. It’s not worth talking about. Yeah.

Yeah, I love that. I love that a lot, man. And you know, if if people want to get in touch with you, like, what’s the best way to do it? Like, is it is it to go like here to the site prolific brand Wine.com. I know you have a really cool book as well. So I guess if people if you’re listening to this and you’re kind of like service level, just getting into this concept of branding and really taking your business to the next level, you know, I guess it would be best for them to kind of hit up this checklist or start this up.

Yeah, get the book. And there’s actually we updated that recently where we put a there’s a link to a video kind of embedded in there that you click it and you start watching them. There’s a link that actually walks people through how to understand their core belief. Now, it’s, I don’t know, it’s it’s one of those things where it’s a lot easier to understand. Have you ever talked to a business owner or even thought about yourself? And it’s like when you’re working on your own business, it’s like so hard, but you work on somebody else’s like easy.

It’s easy to identify problems of other or other people’s problems, right? Versus our own. Yeah. It’s like we’re.

It’s like in our own world. We’re like, it’s so foggy, you know? And so, you know, there’s a reference in there that I think will help people to navigate that, where I’m walking through some of the steps that we do, like on the call that I did with you. But the best way is just to get somebody to help you, somebody that sees your business. Clearly, I would say like I’m not smarter than anybody. All that the difference is that I’m in I’m outside of that person. Right. So the difference is, is a whole lot easier to see something when you’re looking at it versus being in it. And so I’m able to kind of navigate guide people through that in our discovery call. So I would get the checklist, go through that stuff. You’re going to get so much. More clarity, and hopefully that gets you to a level of either understanding what your needs are in the state. When it comes to branding, being able to apply this stuff better and then when you’re ready, you can then come to us and and we’ll then help you to go to the next level with it. So there’s a button right there on your screen. They schedule a call, but yeah, grab the e-book. Somebody will reach out to you too because to see if we can help further. But yeah, books would Travis my brother, and he’ll kind of walk you through the options.

Travis is amazing, by the way. Travis is is he’s a lot taller than I thought he was going to be.

But he’s like nine feet tall, dude.

So if you guys want to get a hold of prolific and you’re you’re a server session client, you can go to the academy again. There are discounts in there. And we don’t like the word discounts here. But there’s there’s there are some incentives there, I guess we could say. Well, we put together.

It’s not a discount. And to to it’s what it is is we put together a custom package.

So it’s really something that.

Only available discount, it’s only available with you. And so it’s just kind of a special deal where we’re combining some of the things that you’ve you’ve created specifically for your base. And and so I think that’s something that’s it’s even better than a discount.

Better than a discount because you’re actually getting more specific details and frameworks that are going to help take your business to the next level. So you guys can do that in the academy. But also, if you’re not a client, you can go to prolific. Prolific brand design. There’s that book there. It’s easy to get. I put in my information. It’s super easy to get emails. I mean, it’s fantastic. It makes things really easy. You can schedule a call directly if you guys are ready to get started. I guess in closing here, like. What else would you share with these these concrete and painting company owners around branding?

Yeah. I mean, I think. For me, it comes down to. It comes down to what do you really want to accomplish like. And that’s really the main thing, like, and really like, really with anything, right? But it’s like. What do you want to accomplish with your time, your day, collectively? What do you want that add up to? And we work with companies that the cool thing about what we do is we work with great brands. They don’t have all of the techniques and tools and stuff that we help equip them with yet. But every single customer we work with, these are the, the, the greatest brands that are out there and we help them along, which is super cool, but. You know, if your brand is great, if your company is great, you need to ask yourself, like, what do you what? What do you want? Like, where are you going? And what do you need to get there? And if we’re a part of that, like. Then I definitely want to help. And it’s really. It just, you know, it makes sense to to figure out where you’re going, why you’re going there. What are we saying to people that helps them to know? And yeah, so I mean, I think that’s the major thing is like just figuring out like kind of looking at the bigger picture and going and then kind of trickling down from there.

But the cool thing is that once you get that big picture down, your brand experience is actually how you can have that come out in every little thing because you want to actually with your branding, the goal is you don’t want to have to tell people why you do what you do or how you do. You want them to be able to tell you you want to do the thing and then then be able to understand it without telling them, right? So not relying on those words quite as much. So yeah, I think that’s really the main goal is like how can we start being more of who we are and. Doing more instead of saying as much like showing people instead of telling them and just be more of who you already are, be more of you. And if you can be more of you, you’re inherently different. So you will have a unique experience and then just start showing people that more and earlier.

Yeah, I love that. And I think this is Brian right here. He is the marketing director. Over he goes, we want regional domination. And you know, you’re never going to really achieve that without proper branding. And because that’s one thing I learned too as well, is like we were running ads with Cardinal before we did the branding and we can generate lead, generate lead, generate leads. But it was a different level when people knew our brand and what Cardinal stood for and it was more memorable and these things versus like a quick lead and a quick project and never hear from them again, you know? So I love all of this. I love branding. I love what you’re doing, man. I love how you are a part of this whole journey of really professionalizing the home service industry and taking things to the next level. Any final thoughts or any comments you want to add?

I love the domination. You know, this is dabble or dominate, you know.


There’s no in-between. So yeah. And as an encouragement for people that aren’t quite going as a domination for a region yet, which I think is awesome, you know, you can dominate the attention of five or 5000 or 5 million. So, you know, start where you’re at and keep at it and and build something that’s that’s worth building, you know?

Yeah. Hey. Well, thank you so much, Ryan. It was amazing. Episode here, episode number seven again. If you guys want to get in touch with Ryan directly, go to prolific brand design or reach out to me or him on on Facebook or whatever. But outside of that man, thank you so much for being here and we’ll see you guys next week.





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