Sam McEwin and Dean Millson discuss the importance of branding for small businesses. They explain that branding is not just for big companies, but can also be beneficial for small brands. They outline a methodology that they use to help small businesses grow and succeed. They emphasize the importance of balancing activities that drive initial consideration and brand awareness with activities that enable the brand to be found during active evaluation. They also discuss the challenges that small businesses face in branding and marketing, and provide practical strategies for success.

Key Takeaways:

  1. Small brands should focus on active evaluation rather than initial consideration.
  2. Paid search and performance marketing are effective strategies for small businesses.
  3. SEO is a long-term play that can be more cost-effective than paid search.
  4. Small businesses should invest in brand awareness once they have proven their market fit.
  5. Balancing short-term results with long-term brand building is crucial for small businesses.


  • “A well-balanced media program is one that has activities that drive initial consideration and brand awareness, as well as activities that enable the brand to be found during active evaluation.” – Sam McEwin
  • “Paid search is the most common channel for small businesses to start with, as it delivers immediate results.” – Dean Millson
  • “Small businesses should invest in brand awareness once they have proven their market fit and have the revenue to support it.” – Sam McEwin

0:00:30Introduction to the podcast episode
0:01:13Discussion about changing offices and upgrading space
0:02:41Introduction to the topic of when and how small brands should brand
0:05:00Explanation of initial consideration and active evaluation in consumer decision making
0:07:08Importance of brand awareness and being included in initial consideration
0:08:20Percentage of final purchases made from initial consideration set
0:10:13Importance of balancing brand focus and being found during active evaluation
0:11:59Application of the methodology to small businesses
0:12:44Discussion about typical small businesses and startup models
[0:12:33]Small businesses in Australia need to make revenue quickly.
[0:13:33]Startups need to prove product market fit.
[0:14:01]Business model and pricing must be proven sustainable.
[0:15:00]Brands drive preference, products drive action.
[0:15:32]Offering different pricing options to engage customers.
[0:17:29]Marketing activities for startups must work instantly.
[0:19:18]GoPro Hero Ten Black has overheating issues.
[0:23:07]Tips and tricks to prevent GoPro overheating.
[0:24:31]Using tripod mode and adjusting resolution to prevent overheating.
0:25:32Shooting video in different frame rates and resolutions
0:26:21Managing the rear display brightness to reduce heat
0:26:54Using horizon leveling for level shots
0:27:16Removing internal battery when using external power
0:27:49Tips for using GoPro effectively
0:29:14Recording and syncing video footage
0:29:35Considerations for small business promotion
0:31:59Importance of active evaluation in digital marketing
0:33:03Paid search vs organic search cost comparison
0:35:43Strategy of starting with paid search and transitioning to SEO
0:38:46Channels available for small businesses to grow brand awareness.
0:39:28Importance of building a foundation for brand even with limited budgets.
0:41:02Long-term play of brand building and its value.
0:41:31Targeting the 95% of audience not currently in the market.
0:42:14Affordability of playing the long game for small businesses.
0:42:51Earning the right to think long term and considering the duration.
0:44:11The importance of switching to brand awareness from performance media.
0:46:19Potential consequences of not investing in brand awareness.
0:46:57Staying adaptable and not relying on one thing that works.
0:48:38Influence of brand perception on paid search advertising.

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