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Unique Annual Reports - More Than A Reverse Mullet

Alexandria Joy - Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Have you ever sat in the waiting room of a client or service provider and noticed their Annual Report sitting on the coffee table in front of you? Bet you weren't even slightly tempted to pick it up for a browse (unless of course you hadn't prepared and done your research on them!) 

Why? Because typically these are drab boring documents aimed to serve a legislative or corporate governance mandate not to delight, educate or entertain. 

Imagine seeing a document instead that served as a piece of art, a design masterpiece or a magnificent representation and extension of that company's unique brand and essence. Would you be more likely to pick it up and flick through a page or two?

Annual reports are seeing a resurgence amongst a number of savvy brands. Once only the domain of publicly traded companies and non-profits these reports were typically single-color, and had a plain, boring design. I once had a designer tell me that an Annual Report is typically formatted as a “reverse mullet” ie: the “party in the front” via photography and interesting design, with “business in the back” where financial data was displayed. This trend grew well into the 1990s until Microsoft sounded the death knell by having their annuals available online, setting a steep downward trend in printed annual reports’ significance.

In the past couple of years, I’ve noticed a wonderful trend: a resurgence of companies creating both online and print annual reports just for the fun of it. No other obligation than to share their year’s experiences in a bold, daring and totally on-brand way. 

And we’re not just talking cutting edge print, paper and design techniques for the sake of being arty farty – we’re talking uniqueness that builds on the company’s point of difference. Check out today's episode of UQTV and you'll see what I mean with two cutting edge reports. 

Tweet This: Annual Reports don't have to be reverse mullets says @UQPower

Hungry to see more? Check out crowd funding website Kickstarter's year in review, and  email marketing company MailChimp's reports online.

So next time you are planning a company annual report or website or any brochure for that matter don’t just design and print your standard same old same old thing. Really sit back and think about what makes your company unique, what do we stand for and why do we exist, what do we want to be known and remembered for and build it from there. Your impact and strengthening your brands UQ will be worth it in the long run!

#startwithU

Heidi Alexandra


UQ'S FONT POLICE - STAMPING OUT CRIMES AGAINST BRAND

Alexandria Joy - Monday, September 29, 2014
What first impression do you make?

Sometimes the first thing others sees of us is in writing – it might be our online profile, a website or maybe a snail mail letter or advertisement. 

Are the fonts you use building your brand loud and strong or are they doing you an injustice and we should be sending in the font police to stamp out your folly?

I love words, and design and am a brand junkie so when I see people or companies using these three shocking fonts I cringe and my eyes scream no! Are you guilty of using any...?



Now it’s your turn. Tell me, what do you think? Are there any fonts you love using that you think are the best typefaces created? And which fonts do you believe are a crime against humanity?  

Share your thoughts in the comments below, I’d love to know!

And remember if you want more resources to increase your impact, influence and income then head on over to our resources page.

Keep on building a life, business or career that plays to your unique strengths – the best thing you can do to change the world is to #startwithu.

Heidi Alexandra 
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THE BIG LIFE OF A CONSCIOUS RENEGADE: AN INTERVIEW WITH LISA MESSENGER

Alexandria Joy - Monday, July 21, 2014
Sometimes people say something that just really hits home.

That’s exactly what happened when I first met this woman and she talked about the nature of her life as an entrepreneur. From sharing ideas from her work as the Founder and Editor of the magazine Renegade Collective (launched in March 2013), to the number of new business ideas she has each day and her deliberately contrarian approach to all that she does, talking to this lady was like hearing all the ideas in my head being spoken out loud, articulately and in public!

My guest is the legendary Lisa Messenger, Founder and Editor of the magazine Renegade Collective, and she’s here to help us redefine success on our own terms.

I read her magazine cover to cover each month and am constantly impressed, not only with the inspiring stories it contains but with the clearly alternative approach which it has to common mainstream gossip magazines.

Watch as Lisa and I talk about the importance of backing yourself and surrounding yourself with a support team, the challenges of our perfectionistic tendencies, and how we can make a difference in the world.



To find out where you can get your own copy of Renegade Collective in your country here

Now, Lisa and I would love to hear from you. Where are you thinking small in your business or life when you could back yourself and go big? 

Be as specific as possible in your comment, so others watching from around the world who come here to connect and be inspired can glean ideas from you too.

Thank you for reading, watching, and sharing in the comments below.
To your success, on your terms!
Heidi Alexandra 
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How to share WHAT YOU DO with power and authority

Alexandria Joy - Monday, June 09, 2014
I bet like me you get asked all the time “Who are you and what do you do?” 

Do you answer in a way that wow's them or do you struggle to clearly communicate your answer?

Whether you’re pitching yourself for a date, to land a new client, job or project, or just meeting new people at a networking event — being concise and compelling is vital.

FACT: You only have seconds to get that CEO, recruiter, potential date, client, customer or boss’s attention — and keep it. And in order to do that, you’ve got to simplify your message and wow them. 

If you’ve ever tried, you know this is no easy task. But never fear — UQTV is here!

To save yourself from the delivery of boring, snore worthy phrases or just stating your name, rank, and serial number, watch this week's episode to learn three steps to simplify your message and wow the crowd.



Now, it's your turn. 
How do you introduce yourself at a conference? Do you have a question, or ice-breaker? 
If you’re up for it, refine your message using the three keys and share your passionate intro that will wow the crowd in the comments below! Remember to tell us who you’re targeting so the UQTV community can workshop and share their suggestions with you.

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Be Unique
Heidi Alexandra

PS If you want to improve your soft skills even more then download our Free Report Eight Signs of Strong Emotional Intelligence. 

DELIVERING HAPPINESS DELIVERS PROFITS

Alexandria Joy - Monday, May 26, 2014

When it comes to positive workplace cultures and exemplary customer service, few it seems could rival the happiness seen in Las Vegas based company Zappos. It all started in 1999 when their founder Nick Swinmurn found himself walking around a mall in San Francisco looking for a pair of shoes to no avail and then searching online only to turn up nothing. So Nick decided to quit his day job and start an online shoe retailer... and Zappos.com was born! 

At Zappos they believe that the speed at which a customer receives an online purchase plays a very important role in how that customer thinks about shopping online again in the future, so at Zappos.com, they have put a lot of focus on making sure the items get delivered to customers as quickly as possible. In order to do that, they warehouse everything they sell, and unlike most other online retailers, they don't make an item available for sale unless it is physically present in their warehouse. 

In 2001 Zappos brought in $8.6 million.

In 2003 they reached $70 million in gross sales.

In 2004, they achieved $184 million in gross sales.

In 2008, they hit $1 billion in annual sales, two years earlier than expected.

In 2009, just a decade after their launch the company announced its plans to join the Amazon.com, Inc. family with a buy out worth around $940 million in stock and cash.

In this episode  of UQTV we take a look under the hood at Zappos "work hard, play hard" culture to find out how their rituals have delivered happiness and profits.

Tweet this: @Zappos say that customer service isn’t just a department @UQPower
Now it's your turn. 
1. Have you WOWed at least one person today?
2. What can you do to make it more fun in your workplace? 
3. How do you get your workers and co-workers to grow?

Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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Be Unique
Heidi Alexandra

IS IT TIME TO KISS YOUR MARKETING GOODBYE

Alexandria Joy - Monday, May 12, 2014

It doesn’t matter what you make, write, craft, code, film, engineer, perform, produce, paint, invent, teach or build…at some point in your career or business lifecycle, you’ve probably experienced this.

You make something truly, utterly brilliant. You feel a buzz of excitement about it and you put it out there for the world to consume. And as you wait for the phone to ring, cash register to cha-ching or offers to bring wealth through your door, you realise you are hearing...

Nothing.

Yep that's right, the world has responded with absolute silence. Zip, nada, rien (it's French look it up).

It's deadly and it hurts. Which leaves you to wonder, is this thing called marketing all it's cracked up to be?

If you’ve ever died inside from the deafening silence and you're wondering if it's time to kiss your marketing goodbye, you’ll appreciate today’s episode of UQTV. 
 

Tweet This: Successful companies have kissed traditional marketing goodbye @UQPower

Now I’d love to hear from you.

Have you ever felt like your work and offerings were falling short of their potential? Where do your tribe hang out and are you providing them with a communal space where they can come together?

Share your experience and thoughts in the comments below with as much detail as possible.

Thanks in advance for being kind and generous in your replies and discussion. Your responses, shares and stories are what makes this one of the best, most unique tribes for the improvement of businesses, their people and their culture.

Diggin' this content? Then sign up here, it's free and you'll get a copy of my video to help you improve your EQ called "Soft Skills Gone Hard"

Be Unique

Heidi Alexandra

 

THE CLEVER MARKETING CON CHANGING A BRANDS IMAGE

Alexandria Joy - Wednesday, April 30, 2014

There's a lot we can learn from large companies successes and failures in any industry, and today's featured Aussie brand is no exception. 

As an avid student of branding I can simply turn on the radio, walk down the street or open an email and I have a thousand ideas about how I could adapt the concept in my own or a clients business. From the way an image is presented to he language used or a clever turn of phrase I find myself dissecting and appreciating the world around me all the time. Can you relate?

Often some of the older, traditional, more established brands can start to seem stale and unexciting as they tend to spend years building upon their core message and values delivering consistency to the market. However today’s brand have been a little cheeky and have been trying a little experiment in a real life "LAB" of their own to see if they can change their brand image and position themselves differently in the market.

Check it out in this week's UQTV video.

Credit - some of the footage shown in this video is from A Current Affair's story shown on 20/2/14.

Tweet This: In branding perception is everything. @UQPower

Now, I’d love to hear from you. 

What ideas does this trigger for how you could experiment and strengthen your brand?

Have you seen another brand that is shaking up their strategy?

Share your thoughts in the comments below, I'd love to read them!

Diggin' this content - sign up here, it's free!

Be Unique

Heidi Alexandra

PS Check out our special VIP Leading Ladies For A Day event where you can learn how to dress for your success!

4 KEYS TO BEING WILDLY SUCCESSFUL FROM THE WOLF OF WALL STREET

Alexandria Joy - Monday, April 14, 2014

There's a lot we can learn from people's successes and failures, and one man who has had his fair share of both is Jordan Belfort, otherwise known as the Wolf of Wall Street.

I’ve been an avid student of the world's greatest successes and failures for years, and Jordan's is certainly a colourful, drug filled life of debauchery that apparently is 'even worse' than in Scorsese's film. Jordan himself admits that the Oscar-nominated film based on his memoir had no need to exaggerate the sex and drugs.

The 51-year-old, who served 22 months in jail for securities fraud between 2004 and 2006 after setting up the discredited Stratton Oakmont brokerage and penny stock "boiler room" in Long Island, said Terence Winter's screenplay had not needed to exaggerate his outrageous existence.

What I learnt from the former broker, who now works as a motivational speaker, in a recent interview are four keys to success.

Tweet This: Success comes down to progress, not perfection. @UQPower

Now, I’d love to hear from you. Are you making money doing a job that you loathe?

Have you been settling for average?

Is it time for you to raise your standards and take your destiny into your own hands?

Share your thoughts in the comments below, I'd love to read them!

Diggin' this content - sign up here, it's free!

Be Unique

Heidi Alexandra

PS Want to watch the entire video with Jordan Belfort? Go here.

 

THE NEW SCIENCE OF SUCCESS

Alexandria Joy - Sunday, March 16, 2014

Did you know that it only takes nine seconds to make a positive impression?

Have you ever wondered why some companies and individual magnetically attract the right opportunities, resources, and recruits? In my new book ‘It All Starts with UQ Power’ I explain why that happens, what these individuals and companies do, and how you can become magnetic also.

Do you understand the power of your UQ?

UQ stands for your Uniqueness Quotient and is a combination of the foundations of IQ, EQ, Body, and Vision and is often the deciding factor in how successful you are in both your personal and business life.

This book will help you to understand your own UQ Power so that you can master first impressions based on your personal unique strengths. UQ is a psychology that can be applied on a personal, team, company, or country level and can help you be remembered, respected, and referred in a sustainable way.

Watch my video below to hear more about what's included in this quirky, unique book.


Your UQ is not simply what you think it is, it’s also what others say it is. Building a strong brand ensures that you have the impact and influence in your given industry to bring you the clients, income and win the contracts that you want to win. In order to be successful in both life and business, it is important to master skills that allow you to communicate your brand with confidence, clarity, and credibility. This book will help teach you how to do that.

Regardless of whether you are looking for success in your personal life or your career, ‘It all starts with UQ Power’ is an ideal companion to take with you on your journey.

Order your copy here now.

THE BRAND WITH THE DIRTY LITTLE SECRET

Alexandria Joy - Wednesday, March 12, 2014

What's needed more than ever in today’s crowded marketplace is authenticity and uniqueness. And when it comes to a USP, few companies would be brave enough to declare that their products are “more powerful than a bottle of sodium hypochlorite. Gentler than a thousand puppy licks and able to detox tall homes in a single afternoon.”

However one company is proud to make the claim and the bold, cheekiness of it makes them stand out in the market. That business is known as Method. 

Brain child of two former roomies – Adam and Eric, Method provides cleaning supplies that are beautiful to look at and kind to your nose, the environment and your family. Take a look for yourself in the video below.

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Tweet This: Be first, be unique or go home." @UQPower

These three strategies are just the tip of the cleanliness iceberg for what Method is doing right to build their brand and culture’s UQ Power and I am sure they will continue to wow us with their awesome fun videos and clean hand, thigh slapping, getting down on dirty campaigns.

So what's your dirty little secret for making your brand and culture unique?

In the comments below share with the UQTV community what’s the one thing your brand stands for and which of the three strategies would help you amplify it even more. 

As always be sure to read, share and interact with others as the best learning comes from our collective brain power!

Diggin' this content? Sign up here, it's free!

Heidi Alexandra

PS: Find out more about fabulous Method here http://www.methodhome.com

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    Heidi Alexandra has been the source of much information strategy and innovation that has seen me push the boundaries on social media internally and improved my local and national profile and that of my firm tremendously. Jeremy Kennedy, Director, Australian Business Lawyers and Associates
    I would recommend UQ Power to anyone that is seeking support, guidance and growth in their business. Catherine Miller, Human Resources Manager, Allightsykes