For years, people would ask me, do you know that ventriloquist on TV with the purple puppet?

It wasn’t, do you know Jeff Dunham. No one could even remember his name. And he was pretty famous.

Now, you say his name and a large portion of the crowd shake their head with familiarity. This is because Jeff has created a trademark.

People don’t grab a soda. They buy a Coke. Or a Pepsi, a Mountain Dew, a Sprite or Dr. Pepper. (We could keep going … )

You don’t grab fast food. You get McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, White Castle, or Dominos.

You need to blow your nose? You probably use a Kleenex instead of a tissue. That is one brand that almost lost control of their name because it became so synonymous with the product.
Entertainers also have brands. You’ve got Madonna, Cher and Jlo. There are thousands of examples.

When you have a brand, you become a known commodity. People are familiar with you, and they tend to do business with brands they know and trust.

You don’t need a global brand. You can create a brand in your area.

A problem is, most people have no idea how to create a brand.

Some don’t even know what it is.

How did Jeff become memorable?

Simple – he was unique and different.

His name became well known because of a comedy bit he did with his character Peanut. Do you remember:

Jeff – fa – fa … DUN HAM dot Com!

A lot of people do. That was years back, and people still refer to it. It branded Jeff’s name and made him memorable.

This was followed up with Achmed the Dead Terrorist.

Again, different and memorable. Plus it helped that Jeff gave Achmed a catchphrase.

“I Keel You” was everywhere. And it made Jeff an international star.

Other ventriloquists have also achieved fame with trademarks. Who do you think of when you read or hear:

N – E – S – T – L – E – S, Nestles’ makes the very best …

You better have said Jimmy Nelson. If not, you have two options – turn in your vent card or go study your ventriloquism history.

Does anyone remember the cover band AC-DShee? No, but the band AC/DC has a following.

You can’t achieve anything by copying others.

If you want to be a ventriloquist – you need to become an entertainer. Audiences want to be entertained. And entertainers are creative people.

There is only one you. So be you. And be the best and most creative you that you can be.

Being different makes you memorable. Hopefully in a good way.

Becoming memorable builds your brand.

Use your creativity and find a way to stand apart from the crowd.

It isn’t easy, so get to work!