A good mentor of mine challenged me this week. He said that most small businesses hate talking about branding because they don't understand it.

They switch off and lose interest very quickly... That's clearly a problem for me and my business, as it's kind of what I do.

The problem is that they don't understand how it can help give them a return on their investment, they see it as a cost that doesn't give them any value.

So I've set myself the challenge to re-write and re-design my homepage. I want to explain what branding is in terms of how it will help my customer. In a way that is easy to understand, and sheds light on a 'mysterious area of business.

I often tell my clients to think of marketing as being a magnet. You aim your magnet towards potential customers and try to draw them closer to you. This seems to help them to 'get' the tone of voice you need to use and how to start looking at things from your buyer's point of view.

This works well for marketing, but what about branding?

I ended up playing with the idea of 'attraction' in my head for a bit, and thought that branding is a bit like sprucing yourself up for a hot date.

You want to show the best version of you, don't you? So you dress well, do your hair, wash behind your ears and clean your fingernails. A little Old Spice usually helps too.

But I digress. You should think of branding as how you 'peacock' to show your clients that YOU are exactly what they're looking for.

Strolling casually into their world, looking like any other Tom, Dick or Harry isn't going to get their hearts racing.

You must make an effort to stand out and show yourself some love if you want anyone else to give you the time of day.

Try thinking of your business as being active on the dating scene. You need to present yourself in a way that is going to lure the fish that you're trying to catch.

Talk your customer's language. Show them that you're a good fit for them. Talk in terms of their interests, their goals and their challenges.

Then they'll listen to you; they'll be curious, because most people, I mean, most businesses don't do this, do they?

Slick your hair back, shine your shoes and dig out your lucky pants... And knock 'em dead, tiger ;)