As I talk to client after client, whether they are a pageant competitor, entrepreneur, or business trying to revamp its image, one of the most important pieces of advice I can give them is this: protect your brand. Yes, that sounds extremely simple. But, what does it truly mean? How do you do it? If you can learn how to protect your brand, you will experience more success in a shorter period of time than you could possibly imagine.
So, here are a few steps and tips that will help you begin your journey to effectively managing your brand:
Identify your personal skills – sometimes although we really want to do/produce something, whether that be a company, an event, or a new product – we have to be able to realize what we ourselves are capable of and when you take an accurate account you will find, you cannot do everything alone – so, ask for help!
What makes you different, what makes you unique?- Celebrate those things that make you uniquely you. What quirks do you have? Use them to your advantage, don’t try to camouflage them- often it is those things that you try to hide and make the same that will aid in propelling you to greatness.
Do work. Sorry. You can’t run from this one. Don’t complain about the results you didn’t get with the work you didn’t do. Your personal and professional brand requires you to do work. A lot of work. You have to take the stairs not the elevator. You can always portray the illusion of working; however, hard work has results – it’s proven and concrete. People, including yourself, respect someone who does work and in turn it opens up other doors and you begin to develop a reputation for “getting it done”.
Quality over quantity. If you are not going to do it to the best of you’re ability, do not do it. I rather see less of something at the absolute best quality. Investing in the project/in you is key. Ever heard that quote? fake it until you make it. Well, everything you put out into the pubic arena has to look legitimate – it needs to be the absolute best. And yes sometimes (well most times), it takes money to make money. Don’t skimp on quality to save a few dollars. Again, if you aren’t going to do your best, do not do it.
Keep your personal business off of the Internet. This is a paramount rule in the ever so connected world we live in. Here’s the thing, you may have the absolute best business, best personal brand, but once you tarnish it by putting your personal business on social media, going on a unnecessary rant, or being tagged in a shady picture – you do damage. Just because your profile/page is private, do not think for one moment someone will not see it. I cannot stress this enough, do not give in to the false security of social media’s privacy settings. Think twice (sometimes even four times) before placing something on social media- in today’s world it is the go to place to research someone – a potential business partner, employee, speaker, etc. – so be careful and vigilant.