Monday, July 12

What Is A Brand?

The producers of the morning news show on CBS/CW in Philadelphia asked me to come back to do a television segment on personal branding. Specifically how Moms who are going back into the workforce can think about themselves as a brand to be more successful landing a job.

While preparing for the segment, one of the first questions they asked me was "what is a brand?" Funny, I've been doing marketing my whole career and I've never been forced to think about it so succinctly. There are so many ways to answer that question -- entire books have been written answering that question.

How do I clearly describe a brand to non-marketing people in 20 seconds in front of a live television camera? I can't drone on and on about emotional connections and positioning statements.

Then I realized, in layman's terms, what a brand really is: a collection of ingredients that have been packaged to benefit a specific consumer.

Now that's certainly not the most perfect answer, there probably really isn't one. But it's enough to get the conversation started. So when it comes to personal branding -- people are really just a collection of skills and accomplishments that can be and should be packaged to benefit a specific target.

If you're looking for a job, then the target is a potential employer. So package your skills in a way that will benefit that employer. Present yourself as a brand to them and show them how hiring you will benefit them.

Way too simple, I know, but it's a good start.

If you'd like to see my television segment, click here for the video.

What's your experience? Jim

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