Social Media Strategy Guidebook

Are there any fears keeping your company from engaging with its
customers using social media?

Whether we are afraid to engage or not, the choice to extend our brands using social
media is not our own. Customers, employees, and employee prospects are going to talk
about our businesses either way, and in doing so, they might spread misinformation, tear
us down, criticize, celebrate, promote, or refer others. Regardless of what people say
about our businesses on social media, if we refuse to join the conversation, at least one
thing is clear: We leave a void that will inevitably be filled. We can choose to be in control
of our story or allow social media users to write our stories for us.
As you consider how to evaluate your current social media  strategies, consider these social media best practices to engage and target your audience and measure success.

Access C12’s Social Media Guidebook–>

10 Practices of Visionary Companies

Instead of focusing on a single product or a single leader, visionary companies studied and built themselves into outstanding organizations that constantly churned out great ideas and great leaders. Read More 

Are you the bottleneck?

The April C12 Business Forums are sure to get leaders thinking about constraints and choke points in their companies.

Constraints are anything that prohibits a company from progressing toward its goals, including physical, people, policies, and market factors. If we neglect constraint resolution, we risk exhausting people, misusing resources, and drowning our business. This is a great document, to help CEOs and Business Leaders  to identify bottlenecks that are impeding growth.


Are You the Bottleneck?

Download HERE->

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Branding Demystified

Most companies know what their unique selling proposition is, but a dominant selling idea (DSI) is a stronger version of the concept – a unifying, energizing, focusing, trust-building, clutter-removing, lean-value-creating notion. It’s a motivating difference at the moment of the purchase decision that communicates our #1 position in a “desirable specialty” that’s important to our target customers.Unless we’re able to define our DSI, we won’t be able to attach it to our brand; thereby fusing our name to a #1 specialty in the customer’s mind.

First, we must articulate our clear, ownable specialty. To view our company as #1 at something, customers must first relate us to a specialty category, even if we have to invent it! The idea isn’t just to identify our broad category, but to define a specialty in which we are (or can be) #1. We start by identifying all of the sub-specialties in our niche (e.g., quickest, best value, most advanced, best quality, most energy efficient) and their possible combinations (e.g., advanced and durable). Ideally, an effective DSI will possess five selling attributes: superlative, important, believable, memorable, and tangible. When combining the five attributes into a succinct DSI, we create a dynamic, memorable selling idea that we can connect with our name.

As leaders of companies, we must understand our DSI, and how to clearly communicate it to others. Not only do we set the example; we have the opportunity to invite our teams into the process. Regardless of how long our companies have been operating, and what our revenues look like, it’s important to take time with our key leaders and work on our DSI. For some of us, that may mean documenting one for the first time, while others of us may benefit from refreshing the DSI with our teams. Either way, when our organizations have further clarity on why we are different than the competition and how to communicate that distinction, our companies are more aligned for growth.

Every company has a brand. Some have worked to carefully build their brand, while others have been assigned a brand from their customers that they would rather not have. For every company, the work of defining and building a brand never stops. Because of changing markets, competitors, and products, there is always a need to close the gap between our current brand positioning and our desired brand positioning. It’s possible for any company to close the gap, but you will want to avoid these five branding myths to reach your goal.

I need to have a big budget to build a brand

It’s possible to create and maintain a strong brand regardless of size of company or budget. Start by defining what sets your company apart from the competition in the mind of your customer, or the dominant selling idea (DSI). Once the DSI is determined, communicate it to customers, and deliver on promises with Iaser-like focus. As leaders, we can accomplish our desired brand identity with clarity, intentionality, and time, all of which don’t cost money. It’s up to leaders to decide if we want to put in the effort to cultivate our brand or have one given to us by default.

The best brands are entertaining

There is a difference between entertainment and effective branding. creating something memorable doesn’t give you lasting business. Poor service, quality, product, etc. will always undermine advertising. Being first or spending the most money doesn’t matter all that much. Focus more on consistently exceeding customer expectations and less on making an initial splash in a market.

Branding is the job of my marketing team

Creative branding ideas are only a start. Billions have been wasted in making a splash rather than building value. While this culture has subdued a bit, it’s imperative for CEOs to understand and authorize marketing efforts – both from the perspective that it requires good stewardship and the fact that the company brand flows out of company culture. Your brand must align with the firm’s stated mission and core values to be credible to internal employees and external customers. Do the work of creating the desired internal brand, and the results will manifest in a quality external brand.

There is no silver bullet on how to build a brand

The truth is, there is a silver bullet, but most companies aren’t willing to put in the time and effort it takes to implement. Successful brands are built with consistent, tightly crafted brand messaging and constant follow through. Break through the clutter by consistently delivering on your promises, and over time your brand positioning will continue to improve.

What built my brand will maintain my brand

Sustained success means conveying a sense of trust and perceived quality. This happens over time, but new threats to your brand are constantly emerging. New competitors, products, delivery systems, and communication tools will be introduced. Your mission of consistent messaging and follow through will remain, but the strategy in which you accomplish those things will need to change along the way to take the next step in your brand positioning.

When you have questions on business topics like branding, how do you get the answers you need to grow your business? Every month, thousands of Christian business owners and CEOs gather together to answer questions and share best practices learned from the combined hundreds of years of business experience around the table.

CEO Recovery Insights: Expectations & Strategies for Mid-Market Comeback

Understand CEO expectations on timing and impact of recovery
 Study fielded June 22 – 28, 2020
 172 CEOs of mid and lower mid-market businesses

Summary of Findings

CEOs perspective on timing of economic recovery vary greatly; Many say conditions are expected to begin to improve in 5 months or less (43%), but most (57%) believe it will be 6 months or more.  Almost no one sees their businesses “significantly weakened” by the COVID-19 crisis looking out 6- months, and most CEOs expect to be “normal” or “stronger than before” in this timeframe.

With modest to high-growth goals coming into 2020 pre-pandemic, 2/3 of CEOs don’t expect to meet their growth targets for the year. But that means another 1/3 expect to hit their targets or exceed them.

Get this complete report from Chief Outsiders.

More Than Your Corporate Pastor

Stress-related issues cost corporate America $300 billion annually. 

Ineffective employee care results in the indirect financial costs of low morale, lack of teamwork, compromise in safety, and personnel conflicts. This year in particular, the marketplace has been a volatile place for leaders and employees alike since COVID-19 unexpectedly swept across our globe. Strategic initiatives thoughtfully timed around the initial outlook for 2020 were either accelerated, modified, or completely tossed aside. Leaders are devoting all of their time to keeping the business healthy and moving forward with little time to spare for relational investments.

Whether employees are working in person or from the safety of their homes, this season calls for business leaders to be thinking about “rebound caring.” Companies are looking for innovative ways to reduce “presenteeism” (being at work, but not engaged) and increase employee wellness and engagement. People need to experience the hope, compassion, and love of Jesus Christ but in a real and practical way from another person.

As futuristic as 2020 sounds, we still can’t clone ourselves. Given all the responsibilities leaders have, they cannot personally and deeply care for everyone. So how can we increase the intentional care we desire to give our employees, particularly in a post-COVID-19 workplace? How can we more effectively build a culture where employees can grow in their joy and faith as well as their productivity and engagement?

Research by Dr. David Miller, Director of the Faith and Work Initiative at Princeton, revealed that chaplain care contributed to greater employee well-being, reduced operational costs, increased retention, and created a more positive culture.

Introducing chaplains is the easiest next step to instantly add value for employees. Giving employees a choice to connect with someone they can relate to promotes greater connectivity and increases meaningful caring engagement.

“The greatest benefit of having Bill is that he understands my heart and he is able to work that into the culture at Wilson Lumber.” 

–Rob Wilson, President of Wilson Lumber and C12 Member since

Covid 19 Recovery: Invitation for Local Business Leaders

C12 Central Texas has limited seats at this current time for business leaders seeking the wisdom and counsel of their peers, other Christian Business Owners, to walk with during  Covid-19 Recovery.

As business owners, we need the right solutions to build the right companies, the right communities, and the right environments that are going to create flourishing cultures and businesses that thrive.

If you are a Business Owner or CEO, email us today to be our guest at an upcoming C12 Central Texas meeting.
Email your inquiry to:

Check out this quick video to learn more about the C12 Experience!

How will leaders of 2020—you—shape our future during this defining moment in history?

COVID-19 Executive Briefing: April 2nd

Discerning hooks, help, or heresy

On Friday afternoon, Congress approved the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, an economic relief plan for individuals and businesses. The implications of the stimulus bill are being rapidly interpreted by experts. Although designed for employers of all sizes, we know that an infusion of money will not help us discover the new normal.

While the headlines and talking heads are reporting very real and painful losses, companies in our network continue to share positive stories of unexpected wins and testimonies of God’s provision and grace.

What we’ve found is that the biggest winners are not necessarily the biggest players.

C12 Member company Camp Gladiator operates a nationwide group outdoor fitness program and equipped all 1,000 trainers to conduct live virtual workouts. With social distancing and shelter-in-place orders in most markets, they are staying mission true by continuing to promote healthy living while their customers are restricted to their homes.

Another C12 Member, Chad Epperson, Owner/CEO of United Treating & Distribution, took the opportunity in the midst of dire circumstances to declare to a network of thousands of industry leaders throughout North America, where he places his hope and how he and his company are responding. In his e-letter, he writes,

“One of our core values is ‘Thankfulness – Be thankful in every situation and bless others.’ …  God is not surprised or unconcerned by the events that are happening in our world today. We remain faithful in knowing that God is in control, and our hope is in Jesus Christ. We are standing in hope, not fear, for we know faith produces endurance. We can endure this trial together and find the good in this situation.”

This week, C12 CEO Mike Sharrow helps us clear the fog to rightly view the circumstances and opportunities ahead. Hear the stories from our community, and be inspired.


Resources & Guidance for COVID-19


Resources to Act:


Government Resources:


Insight & Analysis:


Perspective Pieces:

Crises can create opportunity and competition, but the bond between the business leaders in C12 Business Forums strengthens their resiliency by working together to find solutions.

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COVID-19 Executive Briefing: March 26th

Each day presents new and unexpected challenges. We know the winds of uncertainty will not simply blow over returning us to business as usual. “Usual” is a historical descriptor. How do we respond? 

The cultural landscape for gospel-centered Christianity has been in decline for years, but the disruption of COVID-19 presents Christian leaders with unprecedented opportunities to display faithful and courageous leadership that positions our companies for long-term and lasting success. Unforeseen constraints are forcing rapid innovation across multiple industries. We are witnessing companies pivot and adjust to create opportunities in the midst of crisis. The stories of how the Christian business community is responding to COVID-19 disruptions are encouraging, even in the midst of rapidly declining revenues and dried up supply chains.

There is a growing sense of tribal solidarity in the face of an invisible enemy.

Watch the latest update from C12 CEO Mike Sharrow for five ways that organizations in the C12 network are coming together to collaborate on strategic business plans while leveraging their resources to innovatively and compassionately serve their teams, customers, and communities.


Resources & Guidance for COVID-19

Resources to Act:


Government Resources:


Insight & Analysis:


Perspective Pieces:


When we reach the other side of COVID-19, the world will look different. What are you doing today that will leave a positive imprint on the altered landscape to come? There is no playbook or cookie-cutter plan. With whom can you cycle through ideas and confidently lead into the unknown? Consider building your inner circle with your peers.

Sign-up here for these weekly updates.