Libby Gill is an internationally recognized branding expert, executive coach, author and one of my mentors.
She is also next in the SXSW 2013 Tech Superwomen Meet-up series.
What follows is truly a great networking primer — three tips for identifying and presenting your personal brand:
Iconoclastic scholar and playwright Oscar Wilde famously said, “Be yourself, everyone else is already taken.”
He makes an excellent point: it’s critical for you to recognize that your unique personality is a core element of both your business and your personal brand. And brands that connect emotionally are far more likely to get people’s attention than brands that don’t.
The primitive part of our brains – that is, the area that’s helped us survive all these years – is built to feel first and think second. So it just makes sense that we need to create an emotional bond before we can move on to selling, influencing or managing others.
Here are some tips to help you communicate your unique purpose while reminding others of your product or service:
1. Be Yourself.
It’s critical for you to recognize that your unique personality is a core element of both your business and your personal brand. Don’t be afraid to let your authentic personality shine through the work you do, as well as the marketing messages you put out into the world. Identify your style – whether that’s serious, feisty, cool, cerebral, or provocative – and develop a tone that works for you and connects with others. (Hint: If you’re not sure what your style is, go to my website and download this simple tool to See Yourself as Others See You.)
2. Connect Emotionally.
Brands that connect emotionally are far more likely to get people’s attention than brands that don’t stir the senses. Once you’ve determined your brand style, use platform-building tools that offer you the best method to connect with others. Use all the social media tools, of course, but consider moving beyond Facebook and Twitter. If you love to write but hate being on camera, start a blog that positions you as an expert and gives your clients great content. (But don’t abandon your blog once you’ve started it and gotten your customers hooked.) If interviewing is your strength, identify some interesting thought leaders in your field for a podcast or video series. Not only can you provide real value for your customers, but you can also get to know some top movers and shakers. As you get comfortable in one platform, branch out and repurpose your content for other platforms, too.
3. Create a multi-sensory experience.
Scientific research shows that sensory branding is most likely to work best when you engage multiple senses, so involve as many of the senses as you can to create a richer, fuller experience for your customers and prospects. Think Starbucks, where you get the carefully calculated multi-sensory rush of the familiar green logo (sight), the coffee brewing (smell), the grind of coffee beans and background chit-chat (sound), the feel of the warm cup in your hand (touch) and, of course, the sip of your favorite caffeinated brew (taste). While you may not be serving up grande non-fat lattes, no doubt you can find multiple ways to maximize on a multi-sense brand experience.
– Libby Gill (@LibbyGill)
Libby’s new book, “Capture the Mindshare and the Market Share Will Follow: The Art and Science of Building Brands,” will be released in August 2013.
Don’t forget to RSVP for the Official Tech Superwomen SXSW meet-up, taking place on March 9, 2013, 3:30 – 4:30 p.m., at the Empire.
What are you most looking forward to? Join the hashtag #TXSWSX and let me know.
See you in Austin!