As PR pros, we’re the experts on developing brands for our clients.
We identify key elements of their product or service, come up with talking points and brand messaging, and coach them on how to establish their brand in a crowded marketplace.
Our client’s brand message informs all aspects of the PR campaign.
But if having a clear and memorable brand is so important, why don’t you have one?
I’m sure you’re familiar with the saying that the cobbler’s children never have shoes, and as the owner of a PR company, I understand that saying all too well.
I can be so focused on branding my clients, that I lose sight of the need to brand myself.
I frequently speak about the importance of branding and even wrote a book about it, and yet, I forget to take my own advice.
And I suspect many of you do, too.
Personal Brands Are Crucial
If you work for an agency, a personal brand is crucial for career development.
When managers think about who they want to promote, or who they want working on a high-profile project, they don’t run through the employee roster and see who is next in line.
They go with the person they think of favorably, and who would be the best fit.
Without a memorable brand, your name doesn’t even make it into the running.
If you’re a freelancer, a strong personal brand will set you apart from other PR reps and generate new revenue.
You work tirelessly to ensure consumers remember your clients, so why wouldn’t you put the same amount of effort ensuring people remember you?
Create Your Personal Brand
This week, I urge you to take an hour and think through your personal brand and brand messaging.
Answer the following questions:
- Who are you?
- What do you do?
- What sets you apart from others in your field?
- What are you passionate about?
- What is your worldview?
- What is your philosophy?
Use your responses to come up with a tagline and a brand summary.
Your Tagline and Brand Summary
Think of your tagline like a Twitter bio—it should be short, clear, and memorable.
For example, my tagline (and Twitter bio) is: Publicist, triathlete, and all-around hustler.
These six words accurately convey who I am, what my philosophy is, and give a sense of what I’m like to work with.
It’s also memorable and sets me apart from others in my field.
Your brand summary should be a bit longer, three to four lines, and should convey a clear message about who you are.
My brand summary is:
I’m a book publicist with a knack for staying ahead of the trends, and I believe there’s no substitute for hard work, creativity, and a whole lotta chutzpah. I’m passionate about books, spreading a love of reading, and educating authors on best publishing practices. I frequently jump off cliffs and build my wings on the way down.
This summary doesn’t encompass all that I do, but again, it conveys an idea or feeling of who I am and what I’m about, and that’s what you should expect of a brand.
How Will You Be Remembered?
When you think of Lexus, you don’t automatically think of all the various makes, models, and colors they sell.
When you think Lexus, you think luxury.
You associate Gatorade with hydration and athletic performance.
What do people associate with you?
Are you a leader or a supporter?
Right brain or left brain?
What qualities do you want to be known for?
Create your personal tagline and share it in the comments section.
I look forward to meeting and remembering you!
image credit: shutterstock