How’s your sense of sell? Defining your personal brand

by Brian George – July 2013

Much of your personal brand is on display via social media, as Ken Troupe shared with us in Establishing Your Personal Brand and What does your Twitter and LinkedIn say about your personal brand.

John Maguire
John Maguire

Within the context of premium and corporate sales, let’s explore more what it means to establish and grow your “Personal Brand.” A large portion of what I’ve learned and applied through the years came through a workshop facilitated by John Maguire, Sr. Vice President of Corporate Partnership with the New York Giants.

What Makes You Unique?

At any given time in a market there are perhaps as many as 1,000 professionals selling marketing and/or advertising to your competition.

What are you doing differently than your competition to make “You” stick out from the competition?

My “personal brand” started innocently enough at a store with my wife four years ago. I happened to pick up a bow tie and asked her opinion. Her disapproving look was enough motivation for me to purchase said bow tie and wear it the next day to work. I happened to have a meeting with one of the most notorious “bully clients” in the city of Houston. When I walked in, he said, “I like the bow tie, it makes you different.”

From that moment forward the bow tie was a signature of my “personal brand.” So I ask you:

  • What is your signature?
  • When people mention your name in conversation what association is made?
  • When you walk into a meeting, what is your go-to opening that breaks down the wall of conversation?

Whatever you choose to be the signature of your “personal brand,” ensure that your promise, pricing and results are in line. It does you no good to have a signature only to have someone think of it in a negative light. Just like you protect the intellectual property of the company you work for, you need to have a constant understanding of how the actions you take with everyone around you affect your signature; that is, what you leave with them.

3 Brand Relationships

There are three types of brand relationships:

  • Brand Awareness: I know you exist.
  • Brand Identity: I know who you are.
  • Brand Loyalty: I like who you are.

One of the key takeaways of the workshop was: “Industry leaders make the effort to convert brand awareness and identity relationships into brand loyal ones by offering new and improved features of their brands.”

Assuming you want to be the best at what you do:  Take a look at individuals who are probably loyal to another personal brand or know who you are–but aren’t buying. Come up with a tangible action plan to convert them to be brand loyal to your brand.

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Your personal brand

The question is, “Who’s buying?” [/dropshadowbox]

Understanding that the world of selling premium products and sponsorships has evolved so much in the past decade, relationships are still the most important part of what we do.

My relationship with others is based upon their personal brand perceptions. The question is, “Who’s buying?”  For personal and professional reasons, I need to be conscious at all times to represent my own personal brand as best as possible.

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