Thursday, August 15, 2019

Lady Gaga Taught Me These 4 Secrets to Building a Successful Brand

From Entrepreneur, Giovanni Marsico offers personal branding guidance from what he learned watching Lady Gaga. Giovanni writes:

1. Get crystal clear on who you want to help. 
It is so important to find the right customers for your company. 
Like a lot of people, Lady Gaga is attracted to people who were like her. She has written countless times about being bullied in school and felt like an outsider. It was these same people she went after when she decided to build her community (more on that in a bit). 
For me, I needed my perfect avatar to target. I wanted to help entrepreneurs like me: those who are mission-driven and want to create an impact. To find these people, I met with anyone and everyone and started asking a million questions to get to the root issues and how I could be of help. I started to look for patterns to define my mission. 
For you, focus on whom you want to help right off the bat. Take a stand. Look at your core values, what issues are important to you and your mission. This will help create cohesion and bonds among your core base. Look for those people who fit into that community. But also, just as importantly, do no try to appease to everyone. You can't please everyone.

2. Build a tribe. 
Next, you need to find these people -- a lot of these people -- and build your tribe. 
When it came to building her community and ambassadors, Lady Gaga didn't go for the traditional, top 40 pop audience. She went after the fringe -- the people who were bullied, those who didn't fit in, the outcasts -- and made them her family. And then she branded her tribe -- "Little Monsters" -- which was so important. 
Every year, for our Archangel Summit, we sell out, with more than 3,000 people attending. We are able to accomplish this by building our own tribe. When I launched the entire Archangel platform, I didn't start off with a product, service, experience or event and try to sell people on that business model. Rather, I started off with a tribe and asked out how could I serve them. 
By going down this path, it is much easier, in the end, for entrepreneurs to sell. After finding this passionate audience, you can figure out what the most common challenges this tribe is facing and how you, as the founder, can be the most helpful.
3. Focus on being memorable. 
Whatever you do, be remembered. 
Usually, when artists perform, they do pretty much the same act in each city. It can be a bit, well, blah. But, Gaga customizes her shows to each specific audience -- adding in personal touches to make each performance memorable. It is very micro level. So, people throw things on stage, and she interacts with them. I have seen her do it with a Canadian flag, which she danced with; a denim jacket she put over her dress; and a touching moment, when a concertgoer named Brittany tossed up a letter. Lady Gaga stopped the set, opened the letter, learned that the girl had just come out to her parents, who didn't accept it, and asked Brittany on stage. She then sang directly to her. I am not rehashing this story for no reason; I am doing so because I remember every single moment of that concert. 
In each instance, she made people feel special, like they belonged. 
For us, I go crazy when it comes to the day of the Archangel Summit event. It isn't just panels and keynotes, but also Cirque du Soleil-style performances. I do this to not only keep people energized, but because I haven't seen it anywhere else. 
Do the same for your own business. Do things that don't scale -- and they don't have to be such a grand level as having trapeze artists swinging through your event. For instance, you can insert personalized videos into emails, thanking someone for her purchase. Or send a special thank-you card after your service. Whatever you choose, you just need to show people you care about them.
Read the full story at Lady Gaga Taught Me These 4 Secrets to Building a Successful Brand

Saturday, August 11, 2018

7 Ways To Grow Your Personal Brand in Less Than a Week

From Entrepreneur, Dhaval Patel offers seven ways to grow your personal brand quickly. These are my favorite parts of his advice:

2. Get a website.

If you're going to make a name for your brand online, you need a site where your audience can visit so they can learn more about you. So, get a personal website with an "About me" page. There are lots of tools that you can use and websites you can visit to help you build your own website. Some of them are free. Some are paid, but remember,  you get what you pay for.
If you want your website to be dynamic and professional-looking, make sure that you allot enough time, effort (and even money) into it. Use high-resolution photos of yourself and keep your copy short and engaging.

3. Think about your audience.

Who are you trying to reach? This is called your target audience.
If I've learned anything in my years of marketing, it's that you need to define your audience early on. Are you trying to direct people to your personal website so they can learn something from you? What do you have to offer them?
By answering these questions, you'll be able to get a better picture of your audience, and this will give you direction on how you communicate with them on your website and on social media.

6. Be you and only you.

I'm offering you this advice because I learned the hard way. When you are building a personal brand, you do want to put your best face forward. But you also don't want to create an online presence that isn't true to who you really are. Social users are savvy about honesty -- and they can tell when marketers are not being vulnerable and genuine.
So make sure you are putting forth an honest profile of who you are. When you do this, you’ll effortlessly build trust.

Read the full story at 7 Ways to Grow Your Personal Brand in Less Than a Week

Sunday, March 4, 2018

7 Tips To Give Your Online Persona A Good Cleaning

Last summer in ForbesLisa Quast recommended the following steps to give your online presence a good cleaning.  Whether part of a summer, or spring cleaning, these tips are great recommendations for improving your online reputation.  Lisa writes: 
Make a list of all your accounts. This could include Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Google+, YouTube, Tumblr, Snapchat, Vine, Flickr, Reddit… too many to mention them all. Delete the accounts you don’t often use to reduce the risk from hackers and identity thieves. 
Review your security settings. Use enhanced privacy settings for personal social media accounts, but remember that nothing is truly safe when it comes to posting on the Internet. Always pause and think, before posting personal information or pictures online.
Think like a hiring manager. If a hiring manager were to review your social media profiles, what would he or she think? Put yourself in their shoes and consider your online profiles as seen from a recruiter or hiring manager’s viewpoint.
Cleanse your profiles of inappropriate items. This doesn’t mean deleting all your fun vacation pictures. But it does mean deleting pictures or verbiage that could harm your chances of getting hired or obtaining a promotion (think “G” not “R” rating). It also means understanding which social media platforms are deemed strictly business-oriented (LinkedIn) and which are better for personal use (such as Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram).
Consider the professional image you want to project. Do you want to be viewed as an expert in a certain field? Then think through the various ways you could do this online, which might include providing value-added comments within discussion forums, providing links to helpful articles within your subject area, or authoring blogs or articles in your area of expertise. 
Type your name into several search engines and see what comes up. Did you find anything old or that you don’t want displayed? Go to those online profiles and remove these items. If you found something inappropriate that someone else posted of you, politely ask them to delete the items. Just know that content you remove now might still show up in search engines for quite some time. 
Read the full story at 7 Tips To Give Your Online Persona A Good Cleaning

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

5 Personal Branding Tips Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know to Make It Big

From Entrepreneur, Jasmine Sandler shares her recommendations for personal branding for entrepreneurs.  One of the key steps is to develop a marketing plan. To develop your marketing plan, she writes:
As essentially a one-day planning session, think about and answer:
1. Where will you market your personal brand? Online, offline or both? What channels, if applicable?
2. Who is your audience and where do they hang out online? For this, I would strongly suggest making a detailed user profile. Do you target B2B, B2C or both? Age range? Income? Education level? School type? Work history? What type of content do they consume the most? Whom do they patronize and why? What do they spend on related products and services? 
This one is critical, as a personal brand is all about creating a connection with your audience, whether one-to-one or one-to-many, so you need to understand who you want to build a relationship with and why.
3. What is your marketing budget for your personal brand? What is your intended revenue stream? Does it directly tie into your existing business? New business? The more you can closely define your expected revenues and expenses ties to this brand, the more realistic your entrepreneurial success becomes.
4. How, where and when will you become a thought leader and/or influencer in your industry? This is the crux of personal branding for entrepreneurs. It is about knowing the field in which you possess the most experience, information, and passion. How will you penetrate influence through the development and delivery of thought leadership pieces? What will they look like? A comment? A blog post? An article? An ebook? A video? A PR stunt? How often will you contribute and where? Start by making a list of places to which you want to contribute. Know this by researching where your audience is, and what matters to them.
Read the full story at 5 Personal Branding Tips Every Entrepreneur Needs to Know to Make It Big

Sunday, November 12, 2017

7 Steps to Building a Personal Brand to Support Your Business

From Entrepreneur, Jayson Demers discusses the benefits of combining a corporate brand with a person brand to help the business. Jayson writes:

So, how can you create a personal brand that can support and complement your corporate brand? Seven ways:

1. Identify your key players.

First, you need to decide what people within your organization are the best candidates for personal brands. There’s no necessary rubric for evaluation here, but generally, more experienced people (and those with pre-existing social media followings) are easier to build up.
Many businesses start by designating their CEO, founders, and/or their most experienced account managers, but you can choose anyone with a realm of expertise that will be of interest to your target demographics. You’ll also want to choose people who have a few extra hours a week to manage the development of their own personal brands.

2. Designate expertise and optimize your profiles.

Next, you’ll need to lay the foundation for your growth by claiming and optimizing the social media profiles of each personal brand you choose to develop. The social media platforms will depend on your business and its target audience; generally, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are core necessities, and Instagram is nice to have.
You may also want to separate out the true “personal” social accounts from your personal brand accounts. Either way, you’ll need to optimize your personal brand accounts with professional headshots, wording that reflects each personal brand’s expertise and, of course, links or other ties back to your corporate brand.

3. Create and promote content.

If you want to take personal branding seriously, you can create a professional, separate blog for each of your individual profiles. Otherwise, it’s fine to use your corporate blog with individual author profiles for each of your personal brands.
Take the time to create high-quality content for each personal brand, relevant to that person's respective areas of expertise. Next, make sure to promote that content across the person's social channels. And, while you’re at it, syndicate your core “corporate” content through each of your personal brands.

4. Get involved in groups and conversations.

If you want to grow your personal brand’s visibility, you need to do more than simply write and promote content. You need to get involved with other individuals, so they can see and appreciate your content. The best ways to do this include getting involved with groups, which you can easily find on LinkedIn, or by engaging in conversations, which are easy to find on open public platforms like Twitter.
Look for topics relevant to your area and expertise and get involved with comments, answers to questions and even some questions of your own. It’s a good way to build your presence and reputation at once.
Read the full story at 7 Steps to Building a Personal Brand to Support Your Business

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Why Personal Branding Must Be Your First Focus

From Entrepreneur, Mike Wood discusses what is personal branding and why it is important.  Mike writes:

What exactly is personal branding?

Understanding the ins and outs of personal branding is obviously the first step in the right direction. The concept can be simply defined as the method of marketing yourself and your career to improve relationships with managers, colleagues and clients. Turning yourself into a brand helps you manage how you’re viewed and how much trust you can establish in your career. It involves creating a distinct voice, image and ethical standard.
But, it’s also something that takes consistent work over the course of your career. That is to say, you can’t write a particularly excellent blog post one time and expect that to carry you through the rest of your life. On top of that, just generally having a social media presence is no longer enough to qualify as a personal brand.

Building trust with those around you.

Trust isn’t something that flourishes naturally on a wide scale. It’s something you have to cultivate, and the best way to do that is with a unique personal brand. When it comes to who consumers trust the most, it’s almost always individuals. Corporate branding may technically be more visible, but it’s almost universally seen as less trustworthy. In fact, brand messages are shared 24 times more often if the originator of the message is an individual.
Clearly, you can use your personal brand to build trust as long as that brand reads as authentic and sincere.
Mike also provides guidance for finding a niche and becoming a thought leader.  Read the full story at Why Personal Branding Must Be Your First Focus

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

How to Create a Standout Personal Brand

From Entrepreneur, Kelsey Humphreys describes how to create a personal brand that stands out by exploring the success of Charlamagne Tha God, host of The Breakfast Club. Some of my favorite advice is:  

Take risks.

It’s worth noting that his bold style has indeed gotten him fired multiple times. But, Charlamagne has repeatedly said that he is “for the people” not “for the industry” -- meaning while he is a fan of many hip-hop celebrities, he’s not going to pander to them in any way. This is a risky move, since The Breakfast Club obviously wants to maintain its celebrity interviews. The risk continues to pay off, however, because “the people” love Charlamagne.
Now with his brand new book, Black Privilege: Opportunity Comes to Those Who Create It, Charlamagne is taking a bit of a risk again, choosing such a provocative title. But the bottom line for him comes down to honest, even when it’s risky.
As he told The New York Times recently, “Honesty is a foundation, and it’s usually a solid foundation. Even if I do get in trouble for what I said, it’s something that I can stand on.”

Stay hungry.

Charlemagne decided back in his intern days that he wanted to be a star jock, not content to stay in South Carolina forever. He put in the hustle, and he also worked to stay relevant and innovative. For example, he started recording his radio shows on video back when YouTube was still relatively new. Now part of his fame is due to the viral videos that have come out of provocative Breakfast Club conversations. He was also an early adopter on social media, now with over 1.8 million followers on Twitter alone.
If you want to go far, work to prove yourself and then make meaningful connections, he advises. “Every opportunity I've ever gotten is because of somebody I've met, a new connection I've made . . . showing love, meeting people, shaking hands.” he shared. “I have no problem asking somebody what they do, what they're into, how did they get there, how can I be involved? If it's something I want to be involved in . . . being annoying. You gotta have a DJ Khaled level of annoyance.” His willingness to ask questions and show his hunger brings me to my next point.

Stay grounded.

You probably cannot find an interview with Charlamagne where he doesn’t mention his upbringing on the dirt-road town of Monck’s Corner, S.C. He is big on supporting his home state and goes back to his high school regularly for charity events. This is a man who will never forget where he came from. He takes manners seriously, a lesson learned from his grandmother, and true to form, he shook every hand in the room when he walked in for our interview.
Charlamagne is also big on listening and observing, another common trait of the massively successful people I interview on The Pursuit. He is also well read and deeply spiritual. He explained that in order to have such real moments live on the radio, you have to stay present, open and receptive. For such a brash personality, he’s very willing to get vulnerable. He explained, “I don't mind having that experience with the listeners, like I don't mind that confusion. I don't mind [saying ‘I don’t know.’]”
Even if you’ve fallen on hard times -- like Charlamagne did in his early years, serving some jail time and then working whatever odd jobs he could -- don’t let the negativity in.
Read the full story at How to Create a Standout Personal Brand