I believe this concept will be bigger and bigger as companies become more and more transparent. You could make a case that some personal brands are already stronger. Think of Professional Football. If I talk about the Patriots or Broncos what is the first thing that pops into your head? Tom Braday and Peyton Manning. These two guys are the face of their teams.
If I say Starbucks – Do you think of Howard Schultz?
If I say Southwest Airlines – Do you think of Gary Kelly, current CEO or Herb Kelleher, Founder and Past CEO?
If I say Apple – Do you think of Timothy Cook or Steve Jobs?
My point here is that these people are all recognizable names and each of these people stands for something big?
This is where you as a small business owner comes in. Today, it is more critical than ever to be a reconizable presence for your brand. You need to stand for the right things and lead by example. Social Media is a great tool to use to help get your name out there and be a presence in your industry. But, blogging is by far the best way I have found to maintain a presence over time and help you as a marketer communicate your message to your readers and followers.
You need to be the face and voice of your company and for some, that voice may transcend the company brand. People connect with people and like to put a name/face with the company. Personal brands are going to be just as important as company brands. By the way, you don’t have to be a CEO to start building your personal brand.
There many others who have built strong personal brands for themselves and their companies. Scott Monty, Global Head of Social Media – Ford Company is one great example of a person with a recognizable presence for a company.
When people see your name, do they see the company behind your name?
Personal Brands are going to continue to deliver value going forward and companies are going to need to find ways to really build up personal brands at all levels in their companies.
This topic will definitely get more press in 2014 and I believe it will be a real difference-maker going forward. Marketing Executives are going to need to focus on building up personal brands and finding ways to get them connected more and more with their current clients and as a part of the whole company brand.
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