A brand is the perception of a product or service in the mind of the consumer. Believe it or not, we all have our own personal brands. Each of our “target audiences” has a perception of us. Sometimes this perception is exactly what we want it to be and sometimes, it is dramatically different.
Companies take great care, and spend millions upon millions of dollars, to influence the perception of their target audience. They conduct sophisticated research studies and test and retest all forms of marketing communications. They craft exactly the right message and precisely select the correct medium to reach a specific audience in the appropriate way.
Does all of this care and dedication make a difference? Absolutely.
We often subscribe to the point of view the marketing professionals want us to believe. In many cases we have no choice. We are bombarded by all types of marketing communications about a product or service. Television commercials, billboards, direct mail brochures, radio ads, magazine and newspaper ads, product placement, celebrity endorsements and sports sponsorships assault us almost every moment of every day. Aggressive public relations professionals are pitching stories right now that will shape tomorrows news. Buzz marketing companies are working over your friends and relatives to get them to recommend their products and service to you. It is no wonder that most kids can name 20 different types of candy but they can’t name five Presidents of the United States. The candy gets better press.
So what does all of this have to do with you and your mission to develop a career of continuous improvement? Well, it has everything to do with it. You need to start managing yourself and your career as a brand. You need to begin to take into consideration the perception of your target audience. You need to make certain that your target audience sees you exactly the way you want them to.
When you look in the mirror you need to like who you are. Most other people are not fortunate enough to benefit from your “inner beauty and greatness”. They make decisions based upon what they see, hear and feel when they interact with you. You deserve to be positioned in the best light.
Mastering how to do this is the difficult part. Throughout the next couple of weeks we’ll explore some ways to improve your personal brand. I’ll also provide you with some resources and some additional opinions.
Check it out and let me know what you think. My e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org