When it comes to marketing, the most valuable thing you can do for your company, your employees, and your customers is get a good firm grip on who you really are and what you really stand for.

It’s harder than it sounds.

It’s hard to make a stand in the world today. There’s messaging all around you to derail that effort. How to appeal to millennials. How to be authentic. Three most important things you must do every day in order to be successful.¬†How to figure out what your customers really want. In the midst of all that messaging, it’s hard to look within and decide, THIS is who we really are. THIS is what we’re all about.

It’s hard to put your real corporate self out there, because, you know, you might piss someone off, and you can’t piss off potential customers. You know what? Yes, you can. You HAVE to. Because if you’re not pissing someone off, you’re not saying anything very powerful. And nobody likes a namby-pamby, milk-toasty lump of nothing-special-to-be-said-for-it.

But if you do overcome the fear and the messaging and the oh-my-god-what-have-I-done, what happens?

The people you love to work with, the ones you’ll work late hours for, the ones you’ll bend over backwards for, the ones you forget to invoice you love working with them so much, THOSE people will find you. Don’t you want more of those people in your client roster? They can’t find you if you don’t put that true stuff out there.

You know what else happens? Those people you don’t like to work with so much, the ones who complain, the ones you procrastinate about, the ones who don’t quite GET what it is that you do that’s so great, THOSE people will go somewhere else. They’ll find someone who DOES love them to work with, and wouldn’t that be joyous for everyone?

It’s now or never, gang. Put on your big boy or girl pants, claim your true corporate self, and go out there and piss somebody off.