Be consistent. Consistency is the most important thing. You can’t have days off. At the end of the day, people rely on you. If you are not consistent and always present, mentally or physically, that is going to reflect in your brand. When you’re a service-based company like us, you always have to be consistent. Clients want to get exactly what they are promised.

As part of our series about how build a trusted and beloved brand, I had the pleasure of interviewing Adam Kayce.

Adam Kayce is a nationally recognized exposition producer and innovator, specialist in personalizing brands and the ultimate content and experience creator. For over twelve years, Adam has driven over one hundred thousand attendees annually and established the Home Design and Remodeling Shows to be the largest economic driving force for the South Florida home design and home improvement industry. As the event and expo industry has come to a halt, Adam has worked directly with the home design and improvement professionals as well as homeowners to deliver value, education, and awareness for the local industry trendsetters, brands, products, and services. Adam began his career in sales and was promoted to Show Director, Vice President, and now President of Home Show Management Corp.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

I’ve always had a passion for business development and working with brands to help put them in a better position through branding and telling their stories. Prior to this I went from medical venture capital, working with a number of small practices and local businesses, to acquire and put them in a better business position, so we alleviated all of their stress of running a business. Later, I transitioned to the Home Show business, which I was able to convert my passion of business development into. The entire principle of producing home shows and expos is this support, in this case, of local industry and help build individual businesses through a platform that we are able to create through a collective effort of hundreds of brands. Let’s call this “collective and personalized marketing.”

Can you share a story about the funniest marketing mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

I can’t say this in necessarily funny but when I first started, I quickly learned the power of “if as it is non-committal, but it puts people in the position of whatever you are looking to sell. Like in my case, “if I could bring thousands of people to your showroom, what would you make of it?” I learned that lesson quickly when I was trying to get people to see the value of investing in themselves. People need to be able to visualize possibility.

What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, our company stood out in the way that we curate and produce some of the leading home expos in the United States. Most show producers look to fill space, meaning a lot of times they will place businesses that don’t necessarily belong in the theme of the show, just to sell. The reason why we are so successful with producing a show of this size and caliber, is because we make sure that the theme of the event not only stays consistent and everything in the show belongs, but we also maintain a level of expectation from our exhibitors. We don’t position the sale over the priority of delivering a true event and marketplace for the attendees coming to the event. We make sure that they are seeing and experiencing everything that they expect to see at our show. We are unique in the industry with putting caliber ahead of just monetary purpose.

Now, we are probably one of, if not the only Home Show in the entire country that completely reimagined what their platform is. We repositioned ourselves as a media company. We truly excel in before, during and after the event. To add a greater level of value and exposure for our clients, we began to produce video content through Zoom since we could not meet in person, at the time. From overwhelming feedback that we received from South Florida and some national brands, we invested in bringing on our own video production and editing team to truly go into the content space. What makes us unique and authentic is that all of our content aims to educate, inspire and connect South Florida businesses with the local marketplace and community to not only position them as the authority in their trade, but also make home ownership and improvement more approachable and less intimidating. Every piece of content that we produce in any format must have a takeaway to educate and inspire.

We also published a digital magazine, which tells the story on a local level and provides content in another way where we showcase professionals but focus on the information that they have to continue with educating and inspiring. All of the content that we produce has the reader in mind, versus just celebrating or spotlighting individuals and telling everyone how great they are. We have found that “WHY and WHAT” is what the content consumer wants to know. We have created the formula for what keeps homeowners and industry professionals engaged with content and wanting more. Our purpose is to benefit the featured professionals and brands to be the one that is most knowledgeable in that field, which in turn positions them as the authority in their specific niche.

We went through an entire rebrand, redeveloped our entire website, reimagining it to be a year-round resource as opposed to just the shows. We’re cultivating a community of people who are using our platform to get information, get inspired, but most of all connect directly and have a resource that they can count on. “Shop the Pros” on our website is that dedicated resource to connect people looking for home needs throughout the entire year. We continue to position industry innovators as the authority in their field. Brands are great and they are exciting, they are important in the sense of marketing, but what makes brands special are the people behind them, and we aim to personalize and bring those individuals with the most valuable information forward, which is what makes the brands that we know so special.

Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?

The past year has been our project, and everything now is coming into fruition. People consume information differently, and we are looking to repurpose everything we do in every single way to keep conversation. We want to make sure that we are the resource celebrating people with the most knowledge, as well as bringing the products and surfaces found in our own local market to light and assure South Florida what is available to them. The one thing that we haven’t launched yet is our new podcast, where we’re going to have weekly guests brought in to address the questions that both homeowners and industry look to have answered. The Home Design Podcast will be real talk about the home improvement and home design industry to offer the insiders look for our viewers.

By putting ourselves in the homeowner’s shoes, we can make their lives easier when they look to hire a contractor or purchase a product. They might not know the questions to ask or what the failures might be once the project is completed. In the sense of functionality, not everyone is knowledgeable, or why is it so important to make sure your contractor is licensed and insured? What’s the difference between construction grade and designer grade? What are these things that contractors use when quoting a job to get a sale, but you may not realize the terminology until halfway through the project when you are not getting what you wanted? We’re looking to educate and give that information to avoid disappointment down the road in home improvement.

Ok let’s now jump to the core part of our interview. In a nutshell, how would you define the difference between brand marketing (branding) and product marketing (advertising)? Can you explain?

To me, when I talk about branding, it is the overall perception of a company. Whether it be luxury, attainable to the masses, exclusive versus inclusive. It is more of a lifestyle. It answers, what do you get when you work with this type business or wear this label? Branding is ultimately the association and the lifestyle type of perception. What my efforts have done has resonated most with luxury brands that have always wanted to be exclusive. They could never properly tell their story to the potential clients they were excluding. Public perception has always carried more value both personally and for brands, which has alienated many individuals and brands from who they actually are. By doing that, the average person probably won’t want to pick up the phone and go any further. But what the average person does not know is that the luxury brand might hold the most valuable information. With that, this “luxury brand” may actually be the perfect fit for what their needs are. We focus on breaking that barrier of perception to reposition the purpose of branding.

When it comes to marketing, I think of specifically targeting an individual for a very specific product or need. When it comes to product marketing, people are looking to position that exact product directly in front of the right person. That is why digital marketing is so impressive. You are specifically marketing to a person who is already looking for your product or service. Marketing caters to the individual’s needs at a specific time and typically generates near term results where branding is more of an investment and long-term play.

Can you explain to our readers why it is important to invest resources and energy into building a brand, in addition to the general marketing and advertising efforts?

Building a brand, I use it in the sense of creating users. A big part of proper branding is creating trust. The most important part of a business is to put a consumer at ease that they are getting quality and getting what they want. It is important to invest resources to give the public perception of what the overall mission is or what they truly stand behind.

When it comes to the advantage of general marketing, that is what creates the day-to-day cashflow. Because you are individually targeting specific people that are looking for specific products. You can’t lose sight of the overall brand, but at the end of the day in order to drive revenue product and general marketing is short sight type advertising, where branding is long term advertising.

Can you share 5 strategies that a company should be doing to build a trusted and believable brand? Please tell us a story or example for each.

Be authentic. Be real. The most important thing is to be truthful, not to present your brand as something that you are not. There is a need for every brand. The only way to provide that need is to truly serve the type that really needs you. Everything I try to do is to make individuals feel like we are speaking directly to them. A lot of brands lose sight of being authentic. Sometimes the way is to be personable, show yourself instead of just a pretty picture. Showing individuality behind a brand is the authentic aspect.

Be relatable. It is a matter of telling your story in a way that shows people your brand or products are for them, using real life experiences. Make your brand relatable in the sense of showing insights, not just a pretty website. For example, you might see a photo of a beautiful kitchen, but people want to see how it’s being used, in what type of home, making it relatable to the person you are speaking to. Product specific marketing and targeting campaigns tend to be more relatable

Be accessible and easily reachable. A big part of building that trust is accessibility. Speaking on my industry, you want to feel you can reach the contractor you hired when you need them. Somebody who stands behind their product or service will be easily reachable.

Have a value proposition. Know your value. When we talk about trends in the design world, and a trend that is here to stay is “value” or otherwise seen as “approachable luxury”. People want to know they are getting the greatest value for their product. I look at myself as a value-based company, I try to deliver value in every way. From shows, to video, to magazine, to online, every single asset is not about dollars. To truly benefit the client, I position our brand to be an overall value to them. By doing business with us, you can be assured we are thinking about your brand 24/7 and as a true extension of your business.

Be consistent. Consistency is the most important thing. You can’t have days off. At the end of the day, people rely on you. If you are not consistent and always present, mentally or physically, that is going to reflect in your brand. When you’re a service-based company like us, you always have to be consistent. Clients want to get exactly what they are promised.

In your opinion, what is an example of a company that has done a fantastic job building a believable and beloved brand. What specifically impresses you? What can one do to replicate that?

Amazon is incredible, in every aspect. They have become a household name. Everyone believes that they are a premium service, you can get everything you ever need for your life at your fingertips. Its impressed me to how they’ve literally gone from being a bookstore to having devices in your home that are learning your most private habits in order to figure out how to service you better with exactly what you are looking for. Listening to your clients, in my opinion, is the key to a successful business. Amazon listened to who their clients are, identified those pain points and formulated their strategy, and that has turned them into an empire. Engage with your “users” and more people will become a user of your brand and believe in your brand. I think the smartest brands are the ones that do less talking and more listening and providing.

In advertising, one generally measures success by the number of sales. How does one measure the success of a brand building campaign? Is it similar, is it different?

Sales are reflective of trust. While sales are important, I think the most measurable aspect of a successful brand is retention. If someone comes back to use you over and over, then you have built a successful brand. If companies focus on the individuals that make them who they are to facilitate more branding aspects, then to me that is what creates a stronger identity. If someone can relate to that brand, they will go back more than a one-time buy. It’s kind of like being in a relationship (friendship, marriage, partnership), if you stay with people long term that means you trust them.

What role does social media play in your branding efforts?

Social media keeps engagement for us. It allows us to consistently celebrate the companies we work with and always show our followers what’s new, what’s different and what’s available to them on a daily basis.

What advice would you give to other marketers or business leaders to thrive and avoid burnout?

PURPOSE! Stay excited and passionate about your purpose. If you start dwelling on the struggle and hardship, then you lose sight of what the purpose is.

You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

I would want to work towards removing the political motivation out of life. Rather than people making decisions for a political purpose or agenda, I would make it be done more rationally and effectively. We are living in such a political environment and as funny as it sounds, if politics were not so political and were not done for the motivation of an agenda, but rather for results, then we could all find common ground and work together towards the same goal. In my opinion, the competitive aspect of politics is what has ruined it.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

Sports has always been a big part of my life, and one that my dad has always said to me throughout my entire life has been “a team resembles that Together Everyone Achieves Miracles, because one person cannot achieve as much as the right players in each position”. I’ve always lived my life surrounding myself with great people in every position, and it is something that has always stuck with me. To me, it means the power of team is greater than any one individual. To achieve a miracle, you need great people around you to help execute it.

We are blessed that very prominent leaders in business and entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world with whom you would like to have a lunch or breakfast with? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. 🙂

I would love to have lunch with Bill Belichick, not only because I’m a huge New England fan, growing up in Boston, but because he is probably one of the best people in the history of sports to maximize every single individual’s potential. In my eyes there is no better leader. He will take people who are not known and turn them into the best person in a specific position for an exact roll. Their motto is that every single person has a job and if they can be the best at it, and they’ll be the best in that space. He is able to build that comradery within a team to buy into that concept and get every single person to put on blinders and execute their exact role.

How can our readers follow you on social media?

You can follow the Home Design and Remodeling Show on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Pinterest and LinkedIn, as well as on our site,

Thank you so much for joining us. This was very inspirational.

Adam Kayce of Home Show Management Corp: Five Things You Need To Build A Trusted And Beloved Brand was originally published in Authority Magazine on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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