In This Issue

Branding "Gangnam Style"

Special Gift for You!

Take Time to Stop and Smell the ... Wins!

Low-Cost Marketing Lessons from My New Favorite Brand

Brands Meet Bond

Congrats to Our Winners!

SBBB book cover
Build a powerful brand that is high on results but low on cost

Book Cover Visual
Brenda's step-by-step personal branding system to take charge of your career. Earn more , do more and be more at work

How YOU(tm) Are Like Shampoo for Job Seekers Front Cover
"One of the most comprehensive books on succeeding at job interviewing I have read." Los Angeles Times

HYALS CG front cover
Master your personal brand to get the job you love - right out of college

The Power of the Platform: Speakers on Purpose
Brenda and other well-known speakers inspire and motive you to live your purpose

Branding Matters

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Brenda travels around the world

Where in The World is Brenda Now??

Author, Speaker, Trainer and Coach Brenda Bence travels extensively to present her unique approach to corporate and personal branding at conferences, conventions, & corporations all across the globe...

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If you'd like Brenda to speak or train at an upcoming event, conference, or meeting, please

e-mail her at:




Brenda is now booking engagements for 2013. 

Write to Brenda if you would like her to speak to, train, or coach your team.

Get a Deal If I'm Working Near You!

Get a Deal If I'm Working Near You!

Save money by sharing expenses with my other clients. If you see I'm going to be at a location near you in the future, feel free to contact me so that we can explore what I could do to help build your team's leadership personal brands and help make a stronger Corporate Brand/Personal Brand Connection™. I look forward to hearing from you!


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Brand Development Associates International  


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Brenda Bence - Achieving Greater Success for YOU and Your Company Through the Power of Branding
December 2012



In 2012, brands were everywhere!  Whether personal brands (Gabby Douglas, Steve Jobs, Lance Armstrong, General Patraeus) or product brands (Starbucks, Lincoln, Facebook, Hostess), brands were front-and-center in the headlines again this year.  

How do you build a powerful brand in 2013 that gets the kind of attention you want?  In this last newsletter of 2012, I share some surprising marketing tips that can be gleaned from the #1 YouTube video sensation "Gangnam Style," I'll reveal a key step taken by the very best leaders and entrepreneurs that not only builds team morale but strengthens their leadership personal brands in the process, and I'll share how my new favorite (and amazing!) brand is using the lowest-cost form of marketing to expand quickly and internationally.  And while we're at it, we'll also have some fun exploring 007's favorite brands, too. (Yes, that's Bond. James Bond.)

Last but not least, as a way to say thank you for a fantastic year here at Brand Development Associates International, we are offering newsletter subscribers and blog followers an incredible deal on our recently released online course entitled Smarter Branding Without Breaking the Bank -- 75% off retail for a limited time only!  No, we're not kidding.   Don't miss out on this special, limited offer.  See details below.

All the very best to you, both personally and professionally, as 2012 comes to an end.  Here's to an exciting, growth-full, and brand-building 2013. I look forward to staying in touch!  


Brenda Bence signature
Brenda Bence



Branding "Gangnam Style"
What the #1 YouTube Video Teaches Us About Smart, Low-Cost Branding   


Gangnam Style
More than three quarters of a billion people - almost 880 million as of this writing - have watched the #1 YouTube video "Gangnam Style" since its release on July 15, 2012.  That means that more than a third of all people on the planet who are on the Internet have laid eyes on that one video. Talk about powerful, low-cost branding! Wouldn't you love to reach that kind of awareness and engagement with your own brand message?

If you're one of the few people who haven't yet watched this video, it's a song by a Korean rap star called PSY who had, up to now, only been well-known in his native country. This single four-minute video has launched PSY into international super-stardom in a matter of weeks.  So, what can we as marketers learn from "branding Gangnam Style?"

Be catchy. The Gangnam Style song is clearly what they call an "ear worm." It's the kind of song that gets into your head and stays there. So, when working on your own brand messages, think powerful, memorable tag lines - phrases that are strategic but catchy, that represent what you want your brand to stand for, and that will stick in the minds of your customers.

Be "eye entertainment."  The Gangnam Style video is very visual and includes a variety of unique scenes in colorful environments. It's attention-grabbing. Since our eyes are responsible for 70% of our human experience, visuals in branding are fundamental. Combine memorable, ownable visuals with your catchy strategic taglines, and your brand will have sticking power.

Be unexpected. One thing you have to say about the Gangnam Style video is that it's not what you expect. PSY is hardly your average handsome, hunky rock star. He's unusual, unique, and different.  He's funny and quirky. All of these elements make his video even more memorable because it's not at all what we anticipate. What can your brand do that is unexpected?

A special gift to newsletter subscriber and blog followers!   


UDEMY - SBBB We are thrilled to share that my new online course, Smarter Branding Without Breaking the Bank, is now available for purchase!  To say thank you for your support all of these years, we are offering this course to newsletter subscribers and blog followers for a (crazy-low!) 75% reduction in retail price.  And, it comes with a 30-day, no-questions-asked satisfaction guarantee, too. (See further below for more details). 


Called "the definitive guide to branding on a tight budget," this course shares dozens of proven marketing strategies that you can use right now to grow your business at little or no cost. How do I know? Because I experienced them all myself, as we grew our business from a one-person show ten-plus years ago to a business that now has clients across 30 countries and six continents. And, we did it on a shoestring budget! In this course, I show you how, saving you years of trial and error.   


Smarter Branding Without Breaking the Bank contains a treasure chest of tips, tools, and techniques based on big-brand marketing  methods but that have been adapted over the years to help small business owners and solo-preneurs achieve outstanding business-building results but at low cost - or no cost at all. 


The program is fresh and unique and is filled with examples, illustrations, exercises, and more: 20 video learning sessions (5 hours in total), a Smarter Branding Without Breaking the Bank 160-page ebook, and a fill-in-the-blank PDF workbook with 60 pages of customizable exercises that you can apply immediately to build your own powerful brand or business. 


Reduction And, as I said, as a special offer to newsletter subscribers and blog followers, you can benefit from our newsletter-only offer - a whopping 75% cut in retail pricing. Bottomline: This $399 program can be yours for only $99!  (This same program would cost about ten times that if you attended in person, but we want you to have access to all of this brand-building information for a fraction of that cost, as a way to thank you.) 


To benefit from this special opportunity, sign up for, then insert "newsletter99" (all small letters) in the redemption box. Visit  


But, please don't wait - we will only offer this special rate for a short while. 


By the way, what could be better than a great dis*count?  The unconditional

30-day, satisfaction guarantee that I mentioned above. That means there is absolutely no risk involved. So, visit and let's grow your brand together with dozens of impactful, proven, low-cost ideas!   

Take Time to Stop and Smell the .... Wins! 



"Nothing seems to be going right!"  My client shared with me as we sat across from each other in my coaching office.  "Our revenues are down, we're coming close to year-end, my boss at HQ is constantly on my back, my team's morale is at an all-time low, and we're all working 12 to 14 hour days.  And, on top of it, I'm constantly feeling guilty about not seeing my wife and kids.  It feels like I haven't had a day off in months!"

After he finished speaking, I paused, and then said, "It sounds like you've given a lot of thought to what is going wrong. How much effort have you put into highlighting what is going right?" I then challenged him to come up with a list of at least ten things that were going well, both personally and professionally. At first hesitant, once my client got started, it didn't take long before he was rattling off all sorts of great activities, both personally and professionally, that were happening in his life. Indeed, his final list of what was going well was far greater than ten points.

This behavior isn't all that unusual. When times are tough, we can all fall prey to focusing on the negative.  Think about it: As a leader, how often do YOU stop to recognize the things that are going well and celebrate those wins with your team?

Three years ago, I shared a link to an article  I wrote about the importance of celebrating wins. I think it bears repeating, especially in today's climate. As we approach the year-end, it's vital to reflect on what's going right as much - if not more - than what's going wrong.

Celebrating wins helps executives, it helps entrepreneurs, and it helps employees. And it's very important for the health of your Leadership Personal Brand. Why?  To find out, read the original article here.  (P.S. Guy Kawasaki quoted this article in his latest book Enchantment.)  


Low-Cost Marketing Lessons from My New Favorite Brand


It's not that often that a brand truly blows me away. So, when I recently discovered a brand that not only earned that description but also demonstrated an important marketing lesson, I just had to share it with you.


First, a bit of background: As a speaker and a trainer, it's not unusual for me to be on my feet all day, every day, for days on end. As a result, the soles of my feet and my piggly-wigglies are pretty much in a constant state of 'hurt.' For years I've looked for solutions to this problem, but I had never run across one that really worked for me. That is, until last month...


my dogs were barkin It was a Friday evening, and I had just completed a fantastic-yet-full week of training and speaking engagements. My feet were incredibly sore (or, as my dear friend, Danielle, would put it, "my dogs were barkin'!"). Nonetheless, I decided to try and ignore the pain and take up my husband's invitation to head out for dinner in our home base of Singapore, where I had been training that day.


After we'd eaten, we were strolling through a mall when we just happened to pop into a store. The sales clerk quickly approached us and asked, "Is there anything on your body that hurts right now?" I chuckled to myself ... 'If you only knew!' I thought. Out loud, I replied, "Yes, definitely - my feet."


"Great!" he replied, with a cheeky smile.  



Brands Meet Bond 


Skyfall Not long ago, I saw the new James Bond movie, Skyfall. Am I a big James Bond fan? Honestly, not really. But, I had heard that there were a lot of brands featured in the film - that advertisers were using good, old fashioned "product placement" throughout the 007 movie -- a marketing method where advertisers pay big-time to have their brands in the film in order to benefit from the positive association with the movie and its characters.


I was curious to see just how many brands I could identify, so I made a 'game' out of my cinematic experience:  I took a small voice recorder with me to the movie theater and, every time I could identify a brand, I whispered its name into my recorder (don't worry - I did it quietly enough so I didn't disturb my seat neighbors!)


Any guess how many brands I identified?   In total, I counted 38! And, who knows - I might have missed some at the rate brands were flying by on the screen.  From Heineken to Jaguar to Bose speakers to the name of the treadmill Agent 007 used, brands were sprinkled throughout. Anybody else catch the brands?  If so, which name brand do you remember most?  Sound off! I'd love to hear from you. 


Congratulations to our 10th Anniversary Contest Winners!


In our last newsletter, in honor of our company's ten year anniversary, 25 people correctly answered our question about which article focused on the Corporate Brand / Personal Brand Connection™.   

As a result, all 25 people won their choice of a free E-book.  Congratulations to Jeffrey W., Leslie K., Anne-Ev J., ANS N., Steve P. Fredrik O, Ashia R, Kittima S., Len Cl, Robin C, Vicky M., Dolly T., Mark M., Louise T., Sameer B., Ladaporn C., David R., Gerritt P.,  Elaine T., John K., Woraphat P., Jillian M., and Rosemary A.  


We hope you are enjoying your books!   


Hear ye! Hear ye!  


HYALS - Audio
How YOU™ are like Shampoo,
the first book in my personal branding series, is now in audio format and available on Visit

Get a deal if I'm working near you!


  World Map
I am now booking speaking and training engagements for 2013 and currently have plans to work in the following cities in 2013 (with more locations in the works!). That means you can get a deal If I'm working near you.

Save money by sharing expenses with other clients. If you see I'm going to be at a location near you in the future, feel free to contact me so that we can explore what I could do to help build your company brand, your team's leadership personal brands, and/or to help make a stronger Corporate Brand/Personal Brand Connection™.  


Chicago, IL (U.S.)
Ho Chi Minh
Hong Kong
Kuala Lumpur
Omaha, NE (U.S.)

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

All the best!

Brenda Bence

Brenda Bence

You have my permission to forward this newsletter to your friends and colleagues.

You also have my permission to use these articles on your website or in your own e-newsletter but you must include the following: Brenda Bence is Founder and President of Brand Development Associates International, a firm which helps companies and individuals build growth-oriented corporate and personal brands.

She is the author of four award-winning branding books

For more information, visit 


Copyright © 2012 Brenda Bence. All Rights Reserved.