***There is an intro article before this one, You can read it here to get more understanding of the context
So we gave an intro to branding in the previous post.
And if You are like me, I know You still have some questions about this buzzword.
Personally, I dont like buzzwords, so when You come at me with the AI, ML, VR, Deep Tech, yen yen yen… I just roll my eyes and ask myself, what is this one saying again?
So I will not be surprised if I mention personal branding in a congregation and someone yells “What the heck is personal branding?”
To avoid anyone yelling at us, let us attempt to answer the question.
As usual, we will take some “formal” definitions and then we will arrive at our own definition.
“Personal Branding” contains two words namely Personal and Branding
Of course, You know what personal means don’t You?.
Personal comes from the word “Person” and it has to do with anything relating to a person.
Branding on the other hand might not come in very handy so let us take some definitions.
The Business Dictionary defined Branding as:
the process involved in creating a unique name and image for a product in the consumers’ mind, mainly through advertising campaigns with a consistent theme. Branding aims to establish a significant and differentiated presence in the market that attracts and retains loyal customers.
The Branding Mag defines Branding as
a marketing practice in which a company creates a name, symbol or design that is easily identifiable as belonging to the company. This helps to identify a product and distinguish it from other products and services. Branding is important because not only is it what makes a memorable impression on consumers but it allows your customers and clients to know what to expect from your company.
If You remember in our intro, we said that the main purpose of branding is to distinguish something from another.
So in simple terms, Branding is the PROCESS (process because it is continuous) of making yourself, your company, your products and/or services distinguishable from the products of other people. Simple!
Let me use a real life example to drive this home.
Let’s us assume You visit me in my home and I offer You a Cola drink in a transparent glass cup, You take the drink and You enjoyed it and You would like to buy more for yourself when You get home,
what did You drink? Cola of course!!!,
but, which Cola did You drink?
Well, how do we know?, we need to check the bottle of the Cola, let us assume we now check the bottle of the cola and there is nothing written on it, how do we know which Cola You drank?
What if on the other hand You check the bottle and You see Coca-Cola?
When You go out, which Cola drink will You buy?
Coca-Cola of course!
That my friend is the entire concept of branding in a simple short story… every other thing is jara and Ajasa!
Now that You know what branding is, we have still not answered your question have we?
What the heck is Personal Branding?
There are many definitions of Personal Branding online, but I personally love this definition from Gary Vaynerchuk
According to Gary,
“Your personal brand is your reputation. And your reputation in perpetuity is the foundation of your career. “
Shopify defines a Personal Brand as
a way for you to share that good reputation in a consistent way. That’s powerful for any professional, and you can leverage it to make great things happen.
Now let me explain what a Personal Brand is.
Each and every one of us has STRENGTHS and WEAKNESSES.
If You want to be true to yourself, You know your strengths, You know your weaknesses.
Now if I come to You and tell You all my weakness, will You be willing to do anything with me?…
Well, maybe pity me…but I know if I told You that I spend Money like the “prodigal son”, You will never be willing to part with your Money with me will You? I doubt.
So personal branding in a nutshell is the PROCESS of Identifying your Strengths and clearly communicating them to your target audiences; your family members, your spouse, your co-workers, your employers, your customers.
To drive this home, let me ask one simple question..
When People hear your name, what comes to their minds?
The answer to that question above is your PERSONAL BRAND…nothing more nothing less.
Your personal brand is your reputation… What others think of You.
You know the bad part?
Whether You do something or do nothing, people already have a perception of You.
You have two options?
- Sit down, do nothing and let others decide who they think You are OR
- Grab the wheels, and steer people in the direction You want them to go. Personal Branding is the art and act of re-directing and re-engineering people’s perceptions of You, your Company, your Products and Services.
The goal of this series is to ensure that when People hear your name, what comes to their mind is your STRENGTHS and your VALUE PROPOSITION…nothing more nothing less.
I will see You in the next post.
I am Seun Ogunmola I help People and Organizations to leverage on Technology to achieve their goals Faster, Easier and Cheaper.
I also write on diverse subject areas including Finance, Business, Productivity and Governance.