#IndieCruise Mastermind 2016 Speaker: Donna Maria: How to Build Community Around Your Brand

Only 109 days until #IndieCruise 2016 Mastermind at the beautiful Club Med Luxury Resort & Spa, Cancún, Yucatán, Mexico on January 17 – 21, 2016. I have already introduced you to two of our speakers: Anne-Marie Faiola and Stacia Guzzo. Today, I am pleased to share that, based on the questions I receive from Makers from all walks of life, I have settled on my topic for the event.


My's topic is How to Build Community Around Your Brand.

As you may recall, our theme for #IndieCruise2016 Mastermind is Make | Market | Monetize (more about that here), a that trio of goals must be achieved by all entrepreneurs if they are going to build a solid business foundation and increase their income over the years.

More About Building Community Around Your Brand

In today's busy world, having a quality product is the price of admission. People do not buy products. They buy experiences.

For example, I can buy soap anywhere.

But I can only get this bar of Praline + Burnt Orange Handmade Soap from Craftsman and Wolves Patisserie in San Francisco because our fellow Indie Cruise'r Alana Rivera makes it as an exclusive for them.


(And it's $10 a bar, and I just bought five of them, and also bought some Confiture Cafe au Lait (which, I confess, I ate from the jar with a spoon) and some Smoked Butter Caramels while I was at it. Because … why not? Where else can I get so much cool Maker Goodness from my favorite city?)

I am now a part of the Huntsman and Wolves Community, not because I love their products but because I have experienced a multi-faceted connection that includes my favorite city, a member of the Indie Business Network, some great caramels, a good bar of handmade soap, and the experience of being part of a hip San Francisco vibe even though I am all the way over here in Charlotte, North Carolina.

I barely felt the sting of the $23.06 in shipping and handling charges.

Crazy? Yes.

Worth it? Yes.

I didn't buy soap or caramels or confiture. I bought happiness, connection, and belonging.

Building your brand community (or “tribe,” as Seth Godin might call it), is critical in business today. When people ask me questions about how to use social media, what they really want to know is how to build community around their brand.


Because community doesn't just lead to a sale. Community leads to multiple sales over a sustainable period of time.

You're Really Asking About Community

When you ask me to share why it's important to blog, you're really asking how to build community around their brand.

When you ask me how to maintain an email letter, you're really asking how to build community around their brand.

When you ask me if it's useful to participate in Facebook Groups, you're really asking how to build community around their brand.

When you ask me about hosting branded virtual events, you're really asking how to build community around their brand.

When you ask me about why they should invest the energy to host branded physical events, you're really asking how to build community around their brand.

When I am asked why it's important to do just about anything in business, what I am often being asked is how to create community around the brand.

Learning + Implementation

Not only will you hear from me, but you'll also enjoy some peer-inspired confidence building activities that will help you feel more comfortable being the chief spokesperson for your brand. Yes! That's right — it's not just about learning what to do. It's about rolling up your sleeves and executing a plan to get it done!

If you don't want to change your life, then don't waste your time joining us on #IndieCruise2016 Mastermind.

Snorkeling and Sunshine

Come snorkel and learn with us!

I am ready to roll out the red carpet for you.

Register for #IndieCruise NOW

Ready to up-level your life and your business?

Of course you are!

Our block is now completely full, but if you’d like to be added to the waiting list, use this link to register and we can let you know if anything opens up. (You do not have to pay anything to complete the registration form.)

See you in Cancún!


How do you create community around your brand? What questions do you have about this important topic? What are you looking forward to learning and doing on #IndieCruise2016 Mastermind? Please do share thoughts and experiences in the comments below, or share on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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About Donna Maria Coles Johnson

Donna Maria is an author, podcaster, attorney, and the founder and CEO of the Indie Business Network, providing affordable product liability insurance and mentoring. Donna Maria teaches Makers and Creative Entrepreneurs how to use technology and community to build a profitable, sustainable business.