What do you stand for? If you, if your life, were a brand what would it stand for? Certain brands stand for reliability, dependability or quality. Others stand for fun, excitement, adventure or innovation, style or cutting edge design, others offer safety or economy or thrift.
In its simplest essence, a brand is a promise, a request to trust. To work, a brand must be believable and consistent (i.e. it must deliver) it must keep its promises.
Would you buy you? What kind of a brand are you? What do you stand for? If you were to list your attributes as a brand, what would they be? Would your best friends agree? Are you happy with your brand?
Brands are frequently represented by symbols, often designed to invoke a feeling that correlates with the brand. If I were to pick a symbol to represent my personal brand it would be “Rock of Gibraltar”. I like the solid stability it implies, something that can withstand the test of time, something strong and enduring, fundamental and foundational. I find this symbol to be a calming one for I know that storms may come and go but Gibraltar (and I) will remain.
We are always communicating, whether we realize it or not. Our daily actions and conversations broadcast our values. When you think about yourself as a brand, you are forced to think of yourself from the perspective of others, of how you are perceived, of how you come across. While it is important that you be yourself (everyone else is taken after all!) and your sense of self should ALWAYS be anchored deep within, it is also good to be aware of the impact you are creating, the brand you are promoting, consciously or unconsciously.
“My greatest strength is common sense. I’m really a standard brand – like Campbell’s tomato soup or Baker’s chocolate.”– Katharine Houghton Hepburn, 1907 – 2003, best known for her headstrong independence and spirited personality, won a record four Academy Awards for Best Actress
“Your premium brand had better be delivering something special, or it’s not going to get the business.” – Warren Buffett, investor extraordinaire
“Define what your brand stands for, its core values and tone of voice, and then communicate consistently in those terms.” – Simon Mainwaring