With all the talk about building a brand, it can get quite complicated. Here are 4 points to help you navigate through the noise:
1. Consistency- Be who you say you are at all times in your visual presentation and in the physical at live events. The brand colors and graphics you use should not conflict with the feelings and emotions you want your audience to connect with. For example, a mental health agency should not associate it's visual branding with dark, gloomy colors, but should opt for bright, cheery colors that evoke feelings of optimism.
Social media presence is also very important when creating a consistent brand image. Let's say your event will donate proceeds to MADD (Mother's Against Drunk Drivers). It's not a good look to post pictures or videos of yourself consuming large amounts of alcohol in a club or in the privacy of your home.
2. Authenticity- Be who you are to the core! There is no secret formula for becoming the "It Girl". What works for Oprah may not work for you and your brand goals. For example, here at the Agency we understand that professionalism is a must. However, our professionalism is true to our brand. We love colors that pop. Often times our founder can be seen at speaking engagements wearing brightly colored dresses rather than a Hillary Clinton pantsuit. Staying true to who you are happens after finding out who you're not. It also allows you to attract the right customers and stakeholders, which brings us to our next point.
3. Kinship- Your email subscribers choose to opt-in because they're interested in what you have to say. In business language, these people are known as your "tribe". Do not stray away from what makes your tribe feel connected, or kin, to you. That means every aspect of marketing should speak directly them. The minute your followers can no longer "get it", they're gone.
4. Expertise- The most important part of personal branding is expertise. You cannot be the guru in your industry if you are not knowledgeable on the subject matter you wish to be known for! Sounds pretty simple, but most people spend more time working on memes with cute quotes than they do their elevator pitch. If you're still confused by this, think about the Cowardly Lion in The Wizard of Oz. Wasn't it hard to believe the "king of the jungle" hype prior to him seeing The Wizard—who also didn't have the expertise he wanted Dorothy and the gang to acknowledge! Instead, The Wizard focused on an outward show that was literally smoke and mirrors. Don't be like The Wizard.