What’s in an executive brand?
With as much as 80% of a corporation’s net value being comprised of its brand equity, it’s no wonder that almost 1.5 trillion dollars are spent on corporate branding initiatives.
Your executive brand is one of the most valuable assets you can control. Your brand helps you build a career, sell better, start a business or even start a movement. No matter what you’re trying to achieve in life, your brand can help you achieve it.
So what’s your executive brand? Let’s help you understand it, articulate it, and live it!
Your executive brand is what you are known for. In that sense, you already have a brand. What makes you memorable? Perhaps people know you as a highly knowledgeable person in your field. How people define your personality determines how they interact with you, so it is especially important to invest time in thinking about your executive brand.
Why Do You Need An Executive Brand?
Back in 1997, Tom Peters said something profound that still rings true. He said, “Regardless of age, regardless of position, regardless of the business we happen to be in, all of us need to understand the importance of branding. We are CEOs of our own companies: Me Inc. To be in business today, our most important job is to be head marketer for the brand called You.” He truthfully said that none of us are defined by our job titles or confined by our job description. And also: “You’re every bit as much a brand as Nike, Coke, Pepsi, or the Body Shop. To start thinking like your own favorite brand manager, ask yourself the same question the brand managers at Nike, Coke, Pepsi, or the Body Shop ask themselves: What is it that my product or service does that makes it different?”
Whether you are engaging in your day-to-day tasks, or looking for another job, as an executive, the personal branding process is extremely important. It helps you clearly communicate the value you bring, helps you stand out against the competition, and helps you find jobs or engage in projects that match your values.
How Do You Define Your Executive Brand?
If you are looking to define your executive brand, here are some questions to answer honestly, that will help.
- Who are you? The first step of the branding process is to have a clear understanding of your strengths, your weakness, the kind of work that excites you, the projects that drain you, etc. Think through the feedback you have received from friends, teachers, colleagues, and supervisors.
- What do you want to be known for? In executive branding, it is important to have an area of focus or a niche. Something that you are an exceptional expert at. What you want to be known for, or as Tom Peters puts it, “what do you want to be famous for?” Answering this will help you focus and align all your efforts.
- Who can you connect with? Both professionally and online, which circles do you want to run in? Who do you want to surround yourself with? Network so you can be introduced to those people, and follow them online too. When it comes to executive branding, word of mouth goes a long way. Engaging in activities that raise your visibility and reputation in a positive way, is a key secret to success.
The most important thing to remember is that your executive brand is constantly evolving. It’s essential to ensure that you are heading in the right direction. Tom Peters’ advice is to put together a group of people that you can trust to give you candid and objective feedback. “Put together your own “user’s group” — the executive brand “You” equivalent of a software review group. Ask for — insist on — honest, helpful feedback on your performance, your growth, your value.” It’s the only way to keep progressing.
At Reactionpower, we consider everything we have shared above to ensure the executives we manage benefit from stellar branding. Combining carefully-crafted strategies and on-the-point execution, we elevate our executives to thought-leaders in their industries. We can do the same for you. Reach out and get started on your journey to executive branding excellence.