Is Personal Branding Embraced by the World?
Personal branding is now on the world stage. Initially a ‘western’ concept, it is fair to say that the need to brand oneself is a global phenomenon. Even in cultures where standing out is not the norm, we can see people embracing the value of identifying one’s uniqueness and proactively communicating this promise of value to the world.
In my own work as a personal branding consultant in Japan I have connected with personal branding experts in more than 20 countries. Personally I have learned so much from these folks and how they are pioneering personal branding movements within their cultures. The value each of them brings to the personal branding field is remarkable.
However, I have realized that most of them, myself included, tend to be very isolated. We all seem to work within the ‘vacuum’ of our respective cultures. Yet there is a huge need to highlight our work and the global reach of personal branding.
For this reason, I have decided to highlight the role of personal branding around the world by hosting a 15-day ‘Personal Branding Across Cultures’ blogathon on my site – 15 global experts from 15 different countries over 15 days! Make sure to visit www.petersterlacci.com/blog from June 9th to June 23rd. The countries being featured include Iceland, Colombia, Turkey, Morocco, Thailand, and more.
Finally, if you are ever in the need of a Reach Certified Personal Branding Strategist in your country, please access Reach’s searchable directory and find the ideal coach to help you uncover and express your personal brand: Find a Reach Certified Personal Brand Strategist.
Peter Sterlacci, founder of BeYB – Believe. Become. Be Your Brand, , combines personal branding strategy with cycling imagery to empower on-the-move careerists in global companies in Japan to shift gears, get out of the saddle, and sprint to career success.
By Deb Dib
The 3D adventure where fearless early adopters, career-minded people, and enlightened companies join the 3D personal branding revolution!
Are you a Ditch. Dare. Do! Daredevil?
“Goals, guts, and glory!” may well be the mantra of the Ditch. Dare. Do! (3D) personal branding movement. While personal branding has always required the courage to be real, 3D personal branding digs deep, tapping new dimensions of self-knowledge, career awareness, and personal activism.
The 3D approach to brand building extends across every one of your touch points—in your life, your work, and your world. It first requires the discipline of introspection and goal creation. It then requires the guts to courageously edit multiple strengths into a single unambiguous branded message of value that helps you achieve your goals—your particular version of glory.
Most people will never do this; they are concerned that limiting their message limits their opportunities. And they couldn’t be more wrong. In personal branding, less is more. Strong brands focus on one thing, not many things. Strong brands are memorable for simple clear value.
So here’s a DARE for you: Get gutsy and focus steadfastly on the single strength you need to drive your brand, reach your goals, and go for glory. (Just make sure the strength is one that your target market needs and/or values!)
Think it can’t be done? Why not emulate the brand strategy of wildly successful companies. Consider these leaders and their crystalline brands: Walmart is known for low prices; Apple is all about innovation; Nordstrom equals exceptional service; Target is the place for “cheap chic.”
What does that look like in human terms? Think about your colleagues, family, and friends–you can probably describe a number of them with one or two words that speak to each person’s singular most visible strength.
Do these sound familiar?
- The Fixer—he’s the go-to guru who can make anything better.
- The Simplifier—she’s the “bottom-line-it for me” champ.
- The Innovator—he’s the “big audacious ideas” generator.
- The Whiz Kid—she’s the talented GenY hire, on rocket fuel.
- The Rock—he’s the “we’ll get it done” port in the storm.
- The Organizer—she’s the project manager extraordinaire.
- The Negotiator—she’s the tough-as-nails, win-win producer.
- The Connector—he always knows someone you should know.
Whether by design or by default, these people are branded. They are often top-of-mind when their organization, team, or personal circle needs their particular brand strength. And if they are consciously and strategically managing their brand message they make sure to keep that key strength consistently visible, valuable, and–most importantly–memorable.
What’s your singular strength?
To find out, seek feedback from trusted colleagues, friends, family and advisors. Think about what you’re good at, what you love to do, what happens when you do it, and the ROI that doing it delivers. Think about which strengths your company and your targets value. You’ll have many answers. Filter those answers by asking yourself which of your great strengths can propel you to the top of your profession.
Then DITCH any “fear of focus,” DARE to be gutsy enough to pick just one strength, and DO make a plan to integrate that single strength into everything you do, every day. Of course you’ll use other strengths as well, but, by being smart, strategic, and selective, you’ll be consistently demonstrating the strength for which you plan to be known.
You’ll soon be in a class by yourself–a Ditch. Dare. Do! Daredevil–memorable, marketable, and positioned to meet (and even surpass) your goals!
Known as The CEO Coach, Deb Dib is a Reach Master Brand Strategist, speaker, educator, and co-author, with William Arruda, of ‘Ditch. Dare. Do! 3D Personal Branding for Executives.’ Her work is featured in 30+ career books, and has been in the Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes.com, BusinessWeek.com, and other major media.
By Marcela Jenney-Reyes
How does personal branding “translate” around the globe in other cultures?
David Beckham’s Personal Brand Legacy: What we can learn from it?
David Beckham is not only a fantastic soccer player but also an internationally recognized “household” brand by even those who know nothing of the sport. While there are many amazing soccer players who are also notoriously good-looking, what was different about Beckham that made him stand out? Not to mention, how has he managed to remain so famous for so long, even after his move from Europe to the United States? David Beckham’s characteristic brand was not created overnight and was also not accidental. So how did he do it?
An interesting segment of Beckham’s career was his decision to sign with the LA Galaxy, taking him from Europe to the United States. This move was a big culture shock for both him and his fans, and required him to make adjustments and adaptations to his brand. The culture difference between Europe and the United States is bigger than many would expect, and for Beckham this meant redefining his image.
How Beckham used his brand to make soccer a more popular sport in America
Interestingly enough, Beckham did not choose to move to Los Angeles as a last resort. He carefully chose this location because here, soccer was not the number one sport. He envisioned “taking soccer to another level” in the United States and made doing so his goal. However, after living and working in the U.S. for some time, he found that he would have to adapt to the local ways of life to promote soccer in this country. The reason behind this lay deeply rooted in American culture, where celebrities enjoy a significant amount of public attention, so much so that his success as a first-class player was not enough.
Beckham was ultimately able to make soccer more popular in the U.S. by using his celebrity status to draw attention to the sport. In America, Beckham is famous for being fabulously good-looking, British, a great soccer player, and for having a big personality. His fame as an individual, rather than his soccer skills, gave the sport the recognition he wanted.
What can we learn from this? It is important to recognize the differences in values across the world. This can not be stressed enough, as cultural differences can change the way you and your brand are perceived. Become aware of the norms and values of your market, and then bring attention to your brand attributes that are in alignment with them. This strategy worked for David Beckham and his dreams for soccer in America, and it can also work for you.
Marcela Jenney-Reyes, MBA is a global marketing expert, business coach and consultant with over 20 years of experience. Her clients include language service providers, entrepreneurs and business professionals from culturally diverse backgrounds.
By Randi Bussin
Looking for your dream job? Ready to try something new? Helpful tips and tools to move you from one career to another.
Corporate Culture and Personal Branding
Corporate culture can be described as an organization’s “personality” and “how things are done around here.” Corporate culture is a broad term, and indicates how employees, think, act, feel, and behave. It is used to describe the unique personality and behavior of a company or organization, and can include such elements as core values, mission, beliefs, ethics, and rules of behavior.
So why then is this important? Corporate culture is important because it can affect you in many ways, such as the hours you work, the availability of options such as flextime and telecommuting, how people interact (or don’t), how people dress, the benefits offered to employees, office layout, training, and professional development. Corporate culture affects just about everything that relates to your work.
And culture ties strongly to and can impact your personal brand and how you are perceived professionally. Your personal brand is a combination of how you feel internally (values, passions, strengths, vision, purpose etc.) and how you are perceived by the external world and those who need to know about you.
If you are working in a professional environment that is a cultural mismatch for your ideals and values, then you might behave and come across in a way that does not represent who you truly are. Not only can this impact your external perception but it can leave you quite unfulfilled and miserable. And since branding is based in authenticity, this can be a real problem.
Here are some quick tips for assessing corporate culture:
- Know yourself well and to know what matters most to you (your values).
- Research the company’s corporate culture/values through networking meetings and online research.
- Pay attention to details as you are walking around the office during your interviews. Notice what people were doing and if they were interacting with one another. Observe the cafeteria lunchtime? Were there key phrases that the interviewers used frequently that would give you a clue as to what the company values/does not value?
- Ask good questions when you go on job interviews:
- What three words or phrases would you use to describe the company/department culture? (Pay attention to the adjectives that are used to see if they fit with your values.)
- Does the company have a stated set of cultural norms? (Often, a mission statement is a good place to start to gather insights in this area.)
- Can you describe the environment here? (Pay attention to the words used and the aspects of the work environment the employer talks about, such as camaraderie, career-development opportunities, and work-life initiatives.)
- What is the company’s attitude toward educational and professional development? (See if the company places a value on lifelong learning and advancement.)
- What type of employee achievements are recognized by the employer? (Pay attention to what the company values, and whether any special awards are given for outstanding customer service, sales, etc.)
- In what type of sponsorships or philanthropic activities does the company participate? (Does the company partner with the United Way, or support programs such as Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day? Do company employees volunteer for local charities?)
Finding the right corporate culture is key to your career and personal branding success. Do your homework and make sure you honor what is near and dear to you.
Randi Bussin, a Career Reinvention strategist, guides executives and business owners towards a renewed sense of direction, an actionable career reinvention and personal branding plan.
A monthly column featuring branding + design tips and tricks for standing out online.
How to take a Digital Brand Sabbatical
I get asked all the time, “How can I step away from my brand online?”, “How do you manage to keep the posts and conversation going when you really just want a vacation?”.
Great questions and a perfect time to consider as we head to the beach for some R&R or just take some time away from the digital conversations to allow our lives to just happen, verses click, print and share.
1. MAKE YOUR PLANS AND ANNOUNCE THEM (1 month before vacation)
Start by determining the best time to schedule your time off. If you work for a company, make sure your colleagues are not taking the same time off. If you work independently, determine best time around your client work. Once you have the date, start by letting everyone know in advance of your plans, not that you are going to Hawaii for two weeks, instead, tell them your intentions while on vacation. Let them know you plan to take a digital sabbatical and see if they will support you by taking on responsibility for continuing your work or taking calls or emails. Make internal work plans to have things covered.
Brand Digital Management Pre-Departure: Send out email reminders to colleagues and clients a month in advance of your vacation to see if there are any needs prior to your vacation that you can support.
2. PREPARE YOUR SCHEDULE AND SUPPORTERS AHEAD OF TIME (3 weeks before vacation)
Now that you have everyone on notice, it is a good time to begin thinking about who could support you while you are gone. Who could take emails?, who could update social media sites?, who could fulfill order requests or client support needs?, who is best aligned with you that you would trust to represent your brand fully?
You need to take a moment and understand all of your digital touchpoints with your audience. Perhaps email messages need to be followed up on, maybe you are working on a project that needs to be supported, or maybe you are very active on social media and need to make sure the conversations keep going.
Brand Digital Management Pre-Departure: Find people that align with your brand (style, communications and reputation) and ask them to support your digital needs. Meet with them to hand off any ongoing work and digital logins needed. Give them specific instructions for social media and client communications.
3. PRE-SCHEDULE YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA POSTS (2 weeks before vacation)
Set-up systems to work while you play. Use a tool like SproutSocial or Hootsuite to pre-schedule some social media posts on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to post while you are away. If you are a blogger, you can draft blog posts and simply ask for someone to hit the publish button while you are away as well.
Brand Digital Management Pre-Departure: Prepare several social posts ahead of time and schedule them to post while you are away to keep your brand and voice in play while you play.
4. ACTIVATE DIGITAL NOTICES (1 week before vacation)
Prepare your out of office email; be sure it is specific on who they can contact in your absence. Be very clear that you will not have internet or phone access while away so they are clear that you are not just on a business trip and will respond when available.
Brand Digital Management Pre-Departure: Be clear of your intentions in all notices. Place notices on as many digital sites as possible to let your followers know that you will be stepping away but can expect posts/responses from a colleague or whoever you put in place. Show them you care and you have a plan in place.
5. HANG OUT THE “ON VACATION” SIGN (day before vacation)
Send out an email to colleagues and clients that you are leaving for vacation the next day and who will be available in your absence. Be very clear of your intentions of truly stepping away from the digital landscape and let them know you will follow-up as soon as you land back safely.
Brand Digital Management Pre-Departure: Go, play, and connect with reality. Remember to live by what you said. If you are serious about a digital sabbatical you will stay OFF line and you will not respond, even for 1 message. If you do, you will be expected to continue and then all your work over the past month will not be followed.
If you still think you need to take your phone or computer with you on vacation, I urge you to watch this video clip called “Get Back” to help you rethink that idea.
Ready to leave the digital world yet? Just remind yourself that taking a break from the constant connected world will recharge your human battery and provide you some time to breathe, relate, and reconnect with the real world.
Here’s to your digital sign-off success! Back in two weeks
Robin Bramman Brand Experience and Digital Media Coach who specializes in chic + savvy Online Identity solutions! The founder of Chic Branding and Partner at EEKO Design Studio, Robin works with high-achieving professionals and innovative entrepreneurs in defining their brand and interactive strategies to increase her client’s digital visibility.
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Spotlight Interview: Personal Branding with William Arruda on iCharts!
Read the 1:1 exclusive Spotlight Interview with William Arruda, personal branding guru & infographics enthusiast, on iCharts.
William Arruda’s New Article on MarketingProfs!
You can find it here: From Nine to Known (Part 1): Nine Nine-Minute Tips for Building Your Brand.
3D Personal Branding Ditch. Dare. Do! on SlideShare
This presentation provides an overview of the new book – Ditch. Dare. Do! by William Arruda and Deb Dib. It’s a personal branding guide for overworked, not-a-spare-moment career-minded professionals. You can find it here.
William Arruda and Deb Deb Write for MarketingProfs!
You can find it here: Career Management – Manage Your Marketing Career in 3D.
Walter Akana talks to Liz Lynch about “Crafting Your Personal Brand Story”!
Master Strategist Walter Akana talks about how to craft your personal brand story in this short video with Liz Lynch.
Personal Branding Trends for 2013
It’s that time once again when William Arruda publishes his annual Personal Branding Trends Report. From curation to QR codes and a lot of other interesting trends in between,you’ll definitely want to download a copy of this free report.
Download your complimentary copy of William Arruda’s Personal Branding Trends for 2013 here!
Peter Sterlacci on the Ambitious Entrepreneur hosted by Annemarie Cross!
Peter Sterlacci appeared on a podcast called The Ambitious Entrepreneur hosted by Annemarie Cross: Break away from the pack and ride to success with key personal branding strategies.
- Tips on being a ‘solopreneur’ in another culture;
- How to brand yourself across cultures using the ‘personal branding style dial”;
- Key strategies that will help you start branding yourself today;
Purzue Interviews: William Arruda on Personal Branding
Justin Webster from Purzue sat down with William Arruda, personal branding guru, author, and founder of Reach Personal Branding, to talk about the benefits of branding yourself in the current job market. Read the interview here.
YOUNique for the iPad is coming soon!
Reach and YOUnique are mentioned on Readz as a featured customer with the announcement of the YOUnique for iPad coming soon. Here is the link. Just scroll down and you will see the announcement!
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