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Midwest Creative Collection | A Community-Powered Collection of Writers & Artists

Midwest Creative Collection | A Community-Powered Collection of Writers & Artists

Our first-ever collection will feature writers and artists of all kinds, in a community-powered publication that will be our most beautiful creation yet. Submission will be free, artists will remain ownership of their original content, and the funding for this project will be backed by local businesses and will support local causes. 

5 Tips on: The Essence of Branding

By Jeremy Gotwals | Photo by Nilesh Agrawal

By Jeremy Gotwals | Photo by Nilesh Agrawal

Be True to your Purpose

Without purpose, a brand does not have life. This goes for personal brands, as well as corporate brands. A purpose is not simply a mission statement, crafted by copywriters. A purpose is the core of why you are here, of why you are producing, and why you are in business. Being true to your purpose as a personal brand, or business brand, means that you do not stray from the core ideals that define your brand's reasons for existing. If you exist to provide a particular level of service or care to a particular niché, why would you lower that level after having set the standard? If your purpose is simple, and you simply provide a few basic things to the world, why would you try to do something outside of your nature? This does not mean non-innovation, this does not mean you cannot change your purpose, or change your goals. But if you know your brand's purpose, stay true to that, through all stages of development. That is how truly great brands change the world. 

Recognizability

A great brand is recognizable. You, a viewer, may have never read an author's books, or never tasted a company's coffee, or never driven a particular brand of vehicle. But you know their logos, you know their look and feel. You can recognize Starbucks, Apple, Toyota, Amazon, from many feet away - without ever having purchased on Amazon, used an Apple, driven a Toyota, or drank a single Latte. 

Therefore, your brand must achieve recognizability in order to establish itself in the public consciousness. Your logo and appearance should be dynamic enough to withstand the test of time. 

Culture

If purpose is at the core of every brand, culture is the heart of every great brand. Without culture, there is no community, there is no brand. Some brands have very narrowly, or limitedly, defined cultures. A brand with a culture that is broad can appeal to many demographics. The Beatles are a brand that have withstood the test of time, because their culture is so unique, diverse, and eclectic. Similarly, Starbucks has achieved a very particular culture, that gravitates people to its stores. Nonetheless, people outside of the scope of that culture will frequent their locations and drink their coffee. 

The "Culture" of a brand cannot be forced, or contrived. When you produce the look and feel of your brand, with recognizability, with a shared purpose, the culture evolves naturally. Building your culture means constantly sharing, and constantly getting people excited about your brand. Historically, purpose is one of the strongest ways to spread a culture. But all of the points mentioned here are the basis of building a brand's culture, and therefore its ability to scale in the public consciousness. 

Consistency with Spontaneity

Very simply, for your brand to be recognizable, share its purpose, and create a culture that will sustain its existence, it must have a unique alchemy of consistency and spontaneity. Your brand must achieve consistency, in that people know precisely what to expect when they get something from you. If someone comes to you, for your books, or music, they know not only the level of quality to expect, but also the taste. Similarly, if you own a thai restaurant, they're not going to expect cheese burgers, unless it has your own unique touch. With spontaneity, the greatest brands have achieved the ability to introduce new and exciting elements into what they offer their public, in completely unexpected ways. The greatest brands are not afraid to create new things, to break rules. So, if you own a Thai restaurant, people would never come to you for a Cheese Burger, but they might come to you for your own Thai Twist on the Panang Peanut Curry Salmon Burger with Avocado and Lime. I imagine, as a fan of Thai food, I would be quite excited to find that on the menu at my local Esan Thai.  

Accessibility & Connectivity

We recognize your brand, whether you're an author, a startup, a band, or a non-profit. We know your purpose, it's very clear. We are in tune with your culture. We know what to expect, and that there might be exciting surprises every once in a while. Is your brand accessible, and connected? Do I have to drive 50 miles to hear you play, to taste your food, to go to your book signing? The internet solves many of these common problems for some brands. An author, musician, or even a restaurant, may easily export their brand with social media and eCommerce. Ironically, some of the most remote brands, where we might get food, can be the most appealing. But this isn't the only definition of accessibility and connectivity. Is your brand Accessible, in the sense that, do people get your brand? As a prospect follower of your brands culture and purpose, with no past experience of your brand, can I easily access what your brand has to offer? Furthermore, your brand has no culture, or existence whatsoever, if its not connected. You must be integrated in whatever ways possible so that people can connect with you - otherwise how can they eat your food, hear your music, read your books, or donate to your cause? Make sure that you have an outstanding website, and social media presence, whereby people can connect with your brand. 

"Wine & Sign" Authors, Art & Music

Wine & Sign - Not your ordinary art show or book signing.

What could be better than your typical book signing, art show, or live acoustic performance featuring great local artists? Holon's event series "Wine & Sign: Author, Art & Music Showcase," where you can find it all. Paired with a variety of wines and refreshments, the events hold a uniquely creative, lively and sensuous atmosphere for all who attend. 

Wine & Sign, November 10th, 2012. At Blueline Creative Co-op http://bluelinestyle.com 

Wine & Sign, November 10th, 2012. At Blueline Creative Co-op http://bluelinestyle.com 

On Saturday November 10th Holon Publishing had its third “Wine & Sign” event since launching its first author in January, which brought together not only authors and artists, but local businesses, non-for-profits, college students and members of the community.

Holon Author-to-be, Matt Seidel, speaking with the crowd. 

Holon Author-to-be, Matt Seidel, speaking with the crowd. 

The event was held at Blueline Style Creative Co-op, an innovative workspace shared by various local businesses and developers that also dubs as an art venue. Blueline's founder, Chelsea Sanders, runs a wedding & event photography business, in addition to being the primary curator of the space. http://bluelinestyle.com 

The third Wine & Sign marked the first presentation of Holon’s young and local authors. It also was the first time new methods of approaching the publishing process were demonstrated, beyond self-publishing and traditional methods. Holon President Jeremy Gotwals explained to the public how Holon would be integrating local businesses and non-profits, as well as crowd funding, into the publishing and marketing process.

The staff at Holon Publishing. Photos by Jeremy Hogan. 

The staff at Holon Publishing. Photos by Jeremy Hogan. 

Matt Seidel, originally from New Jersey, will be Holon’s first crime-fiction/psychological thriller novelist who will also be utilizing “Crowd Source” development to fund the marketing and production of his book, sponsored by Holon.  Seidel's book “Saviors”, which will be out early 2013, is a tale of a serial murder that hunts villains, instead of helpless victims, on an obsessive pseudo-religious quest to save their souls.

Holon hopes to develop Seidel's book and successive works into screenplays and other creative projects.

Both Mariah Srygler, published poet and student at Indiana University, and Courtney Baxter, penname “Johnny Cougar,” children’s author and mother, will be co-sponsored by Holon & local businesses to participate in a publishing process that benefits Non-profits. Srygler's and Baxter’s work will involve local businesses and art by local artists, as well as creative development beyond just the publications of their books.

Syrgler gave a reading of her poetry while ambient music played softly in the background.

Holon's young authors, Srygler, Bundy "Lapore," Seidel and Baxter - and Holon President Jeremy Gotwals. 

Holon's young authors, Srygler, Bundy "Lapore," Seidel and Baxter - and Holon President Jeremy Gotwals. 

While guests enjoyed wine, complements of local business sponsors Historic Showers Inn and their event staff at Morrison Marketing & Media, Holon also showcased art—with illustrations from the adult satire,“You Don’t Know Anything Because You’re F@#!ing Two Years Old,” YDKA—a children’s-book satire & spoof, by young author, Valya Bundy, aka “Eva Katherine Lapore.” The book is similar to “Go the F&^@ to Sleep” narrated by Samuel L. Jackson. Artist Eric Dagley and members of the Holon team are hard at work on producing the book, which is set to release in the coming weeks. 

Gotwals introduced Lapore with dramatic description, as the featured author. Afterwards guests gathered around to listen to a performance by local musician Crescent Ulmer, a member of a student group known as ‘Deadghost”.  After Crescent's  performance, music was played from the newly released EP “Indigo” by Indiana University Business Student and musician, Nitish Kulkarni.