Question: I’ve heard you talk at universities about how marketing helped your personal life. Can you tell us how someone can use marketing concepts for personal goals?
If you don’t have a brand, then you’ll have more difficulty in building relationships. It’s also more challenging for others to recognize you for who you are and what you’re good at.
A brand is what people think of you when you’re not in the room.
– Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon.com
Branding is what differentiates you from the rest of the crowd – whether you’re job searching, looking for more customers, or even finding someone to date. When people have a need and you have no brand recognition or awareness to serve that need, those folks will call someone else for help – even if you’re the best person with all the answers.
Awareness is a good start to building up your brand. Get out there and be known – help others, be proactive in pinpointing what is relevant to them and determine if you can be of service. Such initiation is appreciated and adds value to your identity.
Identity, in addition to awareness, enables you to be the right person at the right time for someone who needs your knowledge and resources. Businesses and service-oriented professionals with the best brands are able to attract more folks and charge higher rates. And with greater demand, there is flexibility and strategy in charging higher rates to get the best clients and grow further. It’s a beautiful, never-ending process.
The same process applies to building friendships and romantic relationships. The more popular and positive reputation you have amongst your circle of life, the more attractive you will be to your friends and their friends. While you may not be charging people (that might actually harm your brand), you will be more selective and methodical in determining where to invest your time and energy. The more strategic you are with who and how you spend your time, the more trust and impact you will have in your targeted relationships.
On the other hand, be sure not to abandon everyone else when you invest in your targeted relationships. Everyone needs help but it’s all a matter of who you are best to serve with your limited resources. If you are not available for certain individuals, find someone you trust and respect to help them instead. That way, no one gets left behind and you provide more opportunities for others to share life on life. In the end, such thoughtfulness will further contribute to your brand.