It’s tempting. You see other brands making money and you think, “I can do that, too.” But too isn’t the surest path to success –far from it, in fact. The surest path is only.

It’s Only at the top.

If you want to create a successful nutritional supplement brand –or any brand, for that matter– the surest path to the top is to solve a problem that no one else has solved. That’s the defining feature of an Only Brand.

Specifically, it should be a problem that:

  1. you are uniquely capable of solving,
  2. consumers care about, and
  3. other brands will find difficult to solve.

This may be the smartest business decision you ever make.

Before you launch your brand, write down your Only Brand story. It may be the smartest business decision you ever make.

The Only Brand story will explain in detail how and why you’re going to solve a problem that meets the 3 requirements listed above. It will serve as the GPS that you use to navigate your business towards its goals. The Only Brand story is a living document: As you gain experience, and your business and the marketplace it operates in evolve, so too should its contents.

Granted, many companies launch brands without writing a brand story beforehand. Some get lucky and manage to succeed despite this. But they are the exception. Many more lose their way.

Even the brands that do get lucky eventually hit a snag. Sales eventually lag. Founders of such companies have come to me saying, “We need you to help us supercharge our brand.” What they need is to find out what made them an Only Brand in the first place and how they lost their way. This will reveal how they can become an Only Brand again. The founders don’t really need to hire me to do this exercise. They can be their own Only-Brand Kenobie. 🙂

Only isn’t forever.

Let’s say you launch a nutritional supplement brand that solves a problem that meets the 3 requirements listed above. Consumers love it, as expected. And as you should expect, competitors will try to copy you. They’re probably working on it right now.

Indeed, in order to keep your brand on top and the copy-cats at bay, you’ve got to continually search for new problems to solve and better ways to solve them. What’s the best way to do that? As a card my wife gave me on my 45th birthday reminds me (I’m looking at it right now across my desk): “Forever stay open, curious, fearless, transparent and willing to be and love being exactly who you are.” Powerful words for business and for life.

Oh, and always talk with, not at, your consumers! They’ll help you find the way.