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Johnny Cupcakes

Personal branding for Businessweek’s #1 Young Entrepreneur

Johnny Cupcakes

Johnny Earle is the founder and head “baker” of Johnny Cupcakes, a multi-million dollar, highly exclusive t-shirt brand with an insanely loyal following.

Over the past decade, Johnny Cupcakes has grown his company from selling t-shirts out of the trunk of his beat up ’89 Toyota Camry to collaborating with the world’s biggest brands like Nickelodeon, The Simpsons, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. If that wasn’t cool enough, he’s a keynote speaker who gives talks on creativity and innovation for companies like Disney, McDonalds, and Apple. Johnny asked Motto to help him build a more strategic presence around his lecture series and enhance his personal brand with a new lecture-focused and event-driven website.

Brand Strategy
Brand Identity
Brand Messaging
Website Design & Dev
Do more of what makes you happy
CSS Award


Build a personal brand, website and overarching narrative that unites Johnny Cupcakes the brand and Johnny Earle the speaker.

One of Johnny’s greatest passions is speaking to entrepreneurs, marketers and students around the world on how to start, grow and reinvent a business. As the demand for Johnny’s speaking engagements grew, he needed a stunning website to reinforce his identity as a world-class keynote speaker and to serve as the hub for his talks, events and speaking-related content.

“Motto is crucial collaborators on my special projects. I’ve never worked with such personable people — that is what separates them. They work at 110% and get results.“


— Johnny Earle, Founder, Johnny Cupcakes


We approached Johnny’s personal brand as we would any other business brand — determine the unique position and bring it to life.

We needed to help his audience uncover his entrepreneurial story, learn about his talks, and book him as a speaker. It was important to maintain visual consistency between Johnnycupcakes.com and his new personal site Johnnyearle.com. The design of the new site is a continuation of the look and feel of the Johnny Cupcakes brand, but is tailored with new design assets for his personal brand. We choose a simple black, white and punch of yellow color palette, used bold and playful typography, and designed a series of new icons to convey important information. We also designed a personal badge logo which marries the iconic cupcake and crossbones logo with his name.

Tone of Voice & Copywriting

Many of the key ingredients of successful copywriting is capturing the essence and personality of the brand. Johnny’s personality is goofy, unpredictable, a prankster and always positive. Motto and Johnny collaborated on copy and headlines throughout the website that hinges on personality until it was the perfect mix of quirky, informative and educational. 

Iconography & Graphic Elements

To further extend the visual language for Johnny’s Lecture Series, we created a set of custom icons and graphic elements that could be used interchangeably for both Johnny’s website and for all his online and printed collateral. We focused on the various segments Johnny speaks to including Business, High Schools, Colleges, Corporate and Special Events.

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