One of the most overused words and, for many, misunderstood ones is Brand. Educators and Agency folks work hard to coin phrases which incorporate the word Brand — see thefinancialbrand.com/glossary-of-branding-terminology — in an effort to distinguish all the ways to explain brands to the rest of the world. For the general businessperson, this only makes things more confusing.

Simplify

What do people think of when they see the McDonald’s arches? Or hear the name Tom Cruise? Or see the color robin eggshell blue? Or why they choose Wegmans over Tops? Ask yourself these questions and what comes to mind? It is with these thoughts in mind that you have the core concept of what Brand means. What comes to mind when you see a logo, hear someone’s name, or see a particular color? Are your thoughts the same as those of others? Of the majority of others? Of what is intended by the company or individual? Companies and celebrities (they are companies, too, in reality) try to deliver or live a certain way so as to establish an image that they want others to think about when hearing (or seeing) their name. Delivering on that Brand (brand promise) is critical to them.

Personal Brand

You don’t have to be a celebrity or a big company to be concerned about your Brand. What do others think of you when they hear your name? (Expert?, Thief?, Reliable?, Fun?) What distinguishes you from others, in your mind? Do you do enough to make people know enough about you so that they think what you want them to think? (Do you live your brand attributes?) Is it possible to deliver a consistent message all the time? (probably not!)

I ask students in my classes about their attributes and many of them invariably say hard worker. I suggest they live that way, if they want to be thought of that way. (Of course, many of those same individuals show up late for class, spend most of the time texting, never ask questions, and run out the moment class is over.)

Marketers ‘r Us

Bottom line is that we are all marketers, whether we want to be, or not. Consider how you want people to remember you while you are alive, as well as dead (somebody is going to deliver that eulogy). It is going to help in you in the short and long run.

Happy Branding!

Why Not Marc(keting)