Branding & Creativity

by Tom Crowl | Maher Ventriloquist Studios


Hi there … this is Tom Crowl and I want to welcome you to the Maher Blog Podcast.

That’s right, every once in a while I’m going to start talking to you rather than just writing.

Today we are going to be talking about something that, at first you may not feel applies to you. But it doesn’t matter if you are a beginner in this art, whether you are full time pro, or most likely somewhere in between, this will apply. Whether you’re doing shows or not, and we’re talking about branding.

People form opinions of us based on the image we project. If we don’t consciously pay attention to that image, then they’re going to form the wrong opinion. They can brand us the wrong way. That does not help anybody. And these opinions are formed in work, in life and in your performance so that’s why I say that this is going to apply to you.

Have you ever been someplace, seen an act and thought, dear Lord, how did they get this job? I’m a thousand times better than that.

Sometimes that’s just our ego talking. At other times it may well be true. But the reason that act got something, and I’ve seen this throughout my career, bad acts get jobs. It’s because their branding is cohesive.

To the client, you’re as good as your materials, as your image, as your branding. It might get you the job the first time. Now that doesn’t mean that you will get the job the second time, but there are plenty of bad acts out there working. It is because their advertising, their materials, their brand seems to be a couple notches above everybody else.

A lot of times, as creatives, we like to be in control of the image we are creating. Because we’re trying to do everything, other things fall to the side. You can’t do everything, you know that, and yet for some reason some of us want to do just that. This is why today we are going to be talking about creating a creative team.

Now when I say we are creating a creative team, I’m not necessarily saying we are hiring people. Although there may be an element of that, but a creative team could be your friends. A creative team could be other entertainers who you work with, or other types of artists.

That’s where the real creativity comes in. When you work with other artists. When you work with people who are good at graphics or at computer skills. When you work with people who are good at different things.

It allows you to oversee the creativity process. A lot of times, you might come up with an idea and say this is what I want to do. If you do it by yourself, you’re missing out on other people’s input.

I’ve hired graphic artists at different times. One, for example, did my logo, with Tom Crowl and the duck being the O’s in my name. The designer came up with something that I never would have thought of. Of course, it wasn’t completely them. They came up with a couple of basic ideas. We played with different pieces and finally I said how about if we combined these concepts, and that created the logo.

I never even would have thought of that, had it not been for working with that graphic artist. So think about who you know. Who is creative around you? Start talking to them, interacting with them. If you have to hire them, know their work. Hire them because they’re good and then trust them.

Now you’ve got to feel it in your own gut, that this is the right thing for you to do. If you have somebody who can help you put together artwork. If you have somebody who is a great photographer. If you have a great printing company, these design people, these people who are around you, are going to make you that much better.

It will project a more professional image to your potential client. And that’s where the magic happens.

Thanks so much for listening to the short little podcast. I hope you found it helpful and hopefully, if you like it let me know in the comments below: