Imaging and Branding via Authenticity and Transparency

Seed Technology CEO Matthew Cutone

Seed Technology CEO Matthew Cutone

Billy Levine, owner of The House of Kombucha and KOGA Rochester, a Bikram yoga studio

Billy Levine, owner of The House of Kombucha and KOGA Rochester, a Bikram yoga studio

Kurt Forstmann, Hemp Division VP at Dixie Brands (Aceso)

Kurt Forstmann, Hemp Division VP at Dixie Brands (Aceso)

Straight up honesty creates solid branding and imaging

Consciously try to out-innovate the competition.”

— Kurt Forstmann, Hemp Division VP at Dixie Brands (Aceso)

GREENWICH, CT, USA, April 17, 2019 / — Fotis Georgiadis, owner of the blog by his namesake, is a branding and image consultant specialist with a robust background and is a visionary interviewer. With a knack for pulling out a well rounded interview, not only covering cutting edge technologies and corporate directions, but also bringing out the personal side of the interviewee.

In a recent interview, Fotis Georgiadis ran across a management style that is making a comeback. As strange as it sounds, 'authenticity and transparency' have been lacking in many industries. Matthew Cutone, CEO of Seed Technology, discusses this in the interview:

“What advice would you give to other CEOs or founders to help their employees to thrive?

I am sure this will sound cliche, but hire people who are smarter than you and do your best to empower them. It’s very inspirational to witness your team solve problems and “grab a hold of the controls”. Don’t just hire smart people, but treat them like family. Start-ups are a grind. Especially in the cannabis industry, if you don’t have the right people in your corner, you will neither thrive nor survive. Operate with authenticity and transparency. If you don’t, these very smart people will “smoke you out” and be onto their next venture.”

This is a big key to branding and imaging. If the people you are looking to connect with don't feel honesty and clarity coming through, they'll look elsewhere.

Another example is seen in the interview with Kurt Forstmann, Hemp Division VP at Dixie Brands (Aceso):

“Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting?

There are too many to list. Unfortunately, the mistakes I’ve made in business have been costly rather than funny. CBD is an emerging industry and keeping a lid on trade secrets is paramount to staying competitive. Hemp (and cannabis) at that time was disadvantaged, in that we can’t apply for patent protection, due to federal illegality. I was naïve when I first got into the space and viewed the sector like a social experiment rather than a financial enterprise.

No one was expecting this growth story. Very early market participants like myself tended to freely exchange ideas and concepts for the “better good.” One time I shared a new idea with someone outside of the industry for a method to prepare hemp oil. About 4 months later that person had entered the space and brought the idea to market. I’m not saying they or someone else wouldn’t have come up with the idea independently, but we definitely helped shortcut this guy’s path to market. Suffice it to say, we were shocked for being scooped, but fortunate in that they botched the launch and didn’t see much success.”

In this case, the lack of honesty and integrity cost a great deal. Had this individual worked with Kurt Forstmann, they could have seen success for both entities.

While interviewing Billy Levine, owner of The House of Kombucha and KOGA Rochester, a Bikram Yoga studio, we see how that direct communication with honesty and clarity is still needed in the CBD marketplace. Read the excerpt below and the full interview here:

“2. For a little while I wondered whether we did ourselves a disservice by not including CBD in the name of our business. But now I can honestly answer: How do you get people into a CBD shop? Don’t call it CBD. We’re the only CBD store in the area that doesn’t have a name association with the plant. We’re the The House of Kombucha and we don’t even say CBD. We’re located in a shopping center a few doors down from Lululemon — a high end yoga clothing store. Our name and location differentiate us and makes us less intimidating which I’m thankful for. We are not selling vapes or buds, we are not a head shop. We are a boutique concept store bringing quality local products to the community. I can get people in here that I know for a fact do not want to walk into a head shop.

3. We recently started selling CBD online and that has provided some challenges. While we have a greater reach in distribution, selling online does not allow me to have that 1:1 customer interaction that I prefer. I had a customer this month who was not happy with her purchase. I feel like if I could have guided her before her initial purchase, I could have steered her down the right path for a more desirable selection for her personal need.

4. We’re not made of oil, why are we putting oil in our bodies? How much of it is really getting absorbed? Does it really permeate? I don’t have any complaints, but I’m trying to get out of oils. I will probably keep a few on the shelf but, water soluble JUST MAKES MORE SENSE. Personally, my go-to product is a 1500 or 1800 water soluble CBD. I think there will be a big shift away from oils and more towards water soluble CBD solutions.

5. There are buyers everywhere. 19 years ago, when I was starting in sales, I noticed I could bring stuff to people and talk to people that were not approached before. There’s a market. Those people are buyers!”

Building a long term positive corporate image and brand takes authenticity and transparency. These 3 interviewees provide some insight into how this makes all the difference between success and failure of a company as well as branding/imaging.

About Fotis Georgiadis
Fotis Georgiadis is the founder of DigitalDayLab. Fotis Georgiadis is a serial entrepreneur with offices in both Malibu and New York City. He has expertise in marketing, branding and mergers & acquisitions. Fotis Georgiadis is also an accomplished VC who has successfully concluded five exits. Fotis Georgiadis is also a contributor to Authority Magazine, Thrive Global & several others.

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CBD oil: Which is better? Water soluble full spectrum or oil based isolated CBD oil?

Source: EIN Presswire