You are the Brand (and Your Product)—How to Create
“Your Brand” for Your New Business Development
Branding comes in many forms. There’s the type that encompasses individuals and organizations as the products to be branded. Then there’s personal branding that treats persons and their careers as brands. The idea of personal branding really got its roots from an article titled “The Brand Called You,” written by Tom Peters in 1997. There’s also branding that treats the individual as the actual brand.
This concept is particularly important if you have a service oriented business where you are the front line for your organization.
In defining personal branding, Peters tells us to “create a message and strategy to promote the brand called You.” To accomplish this task, ask yourself:
”What is it about me that makes me different from the other vendors?” See if you can come up with an explanation that is 15 words or fewer.
“What is my greatest and clearest strength?”
“What is my service and or product’s most noteworthy personal trait?”
This is the old feature/benefit interplay at work here. What is a feature your service or product possess that will have the most benefit for the potential client?
Peters also says to ask yourself:
”What do I do, or my product does that adds remarkable, measurable, distinguished, and distinctive value?”
“What does my product, service or company do that I am most proud of, or we do best?”
“What have we accomplished in the marketplace that I can unabashedly brag about?”
“Where has our product or service added value that I (we) can take credit for?”
The first step in any branding campaign is to increase visibility, and personal branding is no different. Think of ways you can become more visible in your new business campaign. Everything matters in your professional visibility campaign, even the things you do not do.
Networking, or word-of-mouth marketing, is key in your professional branding campaign. Your network of friends, colleagues, clients, past clients, and customers is the most important marketing vehicle you have to drive your product, service, or corporate’s visibility. It’s the hallmark of your personal and professinal brand.
You want the word out there that your corporation is the type of company who makes major impact in your marketplace . You want potential clients to view you as someone who is known to act like a credible leader and your organization a leader in your market.
Tom Peters has suggested that instead of using an old-fashioned product sales sheet, leverage the your corporate and personal brand idea. Think instead in terms of a creating a marketing brochure for your brand: You and how working with your will add value to the transaction of doing business together.
He goes on to say, “You are a brand. You are in charge of your brand. There is no single path to success. And there is not one right way to create a brand called You. Except this: Start today, or else.”
Another personal branding resource you may want to turn to is BE Your Own Brand: Achieve More of What You Want by Being More of Who You Are by David McNally and Karl Speak. The book is good and comprehensive, addressing branding in a manner similar to a textbook approach. Again this is a good resource for those of you that have a corporate service business.
In a nutshell, personal branding is very similar to your unique selling proposition. How do you differentiate yourself from others so that hiring authorities will trust you, find you believable, and be interested in contacting you to do face to face presentation. The aim is to get them to want to get to know more about your product or service, the brand, more.
Pick the benefits you feel your product or service excels in. Then match those benefits up with your product’s success stories. When integrating your professional brand into your, ask yourself the following questions about your success stories. The answers will give you more valuable information to use to your advantage.
As I’ve mentioned before, try to quantify your success stories.
When at all possible, write your customers success stories in terms of concrete dollars or percent: dollars saved, increased sales dollars, increased revenue, the dollar value of time saved on a project, etc. Explain to the decision maker how your product or service made your existing company money, saved them money, or increased their efficiency somewhere to the point that it resulted in an increased bottom line.
When you use your USP, elevator pitch, professional product summary, verbal pitch, and professional branding, you heighten and strengthen your company’s visibility with a prospective client.
The one thing you never want to be is generic in the eyes of the decision maker. You want to position your product or service as a solid standout, a unique product star they want to get to know better and appreciate professionally.
If you would need professional help in the area of determining whether or not your team is working together as best as they could. Are they helping your organizational goals, or slowing the progress down? Please call us at 847-577-2000, or 1-800-227-5802 to discuss your options on understanding your team more fully in terms of their ability to support and achieve the corporate success you are looking for this year.
Have a great week and productive week, managing the changes and challenges that are currently going on in your company.
I wish you a wonderfully successful and productive week ahead.
Eleanor Anne Sweet
Corporate Success Expert
Eleanor Anne Sweet
Your Corporate Success Consultant, Trainer, Speaker and Author
Corporate Success Partners.com
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