Personal branding consultant Faith James talked about the power of one’s personal brand at the Port St. Lucie Business Women’s Feb. 2 meeting, held at Tutto Fresco in St. Lucie West.
“Your brand is what people say about you and your company when you’re not in the room,” said James.
James recommends not separating you as an individual from your business brand. “You must be authentic,” said James. “You are your brand, not just your company brand. Your personal brand impacts whether your network refers clients to you or your competitors.”
Ultimately, your brand reflects your promise of value.
Mention Apple, Oprah and Volvo and what word associations and images for each company or person come to mind? For Apple attendees mentioned user friendly, no viruses and teacher. Oprah is seen as visionary, giving, and a face of Weight Watchers, while Volvo conveys dependency, safety and family.
James turned this on the Business Women and asked, “What one word defines you personally and professionally?”
She asked attendees to identify their unique characteristic or quality and to build upon this through repetition and consistency. “Your brand is what causes others to take action,” said James. “People do business with someone because their brand is trustworthy.”
She recommended establishing an emotional connection through branding. This is what causes someone to take action.
Sometimes there may be a disconnect between how you see yourself and how other in the marketplace see you. James gave an example of someone who sees themselves as a go-getter who gets things done, while business associates and customers view that person as aggressive and pushy. “Be aware of feedback and your reputation in the marketplace,” she said. A brand can be tweaked or re-booted, if required.
James is CEO of the Faith James Personal Branding Consultancy the helps women entrepreneurs define their unique brand positioning, and founder of Branding Over Brunch Personal Branding Workshop Series and the Branding After Dark Professional Networking Events. For those people and companies who want to uncover potential marketplace perception problems, James offers 360Reach Personal Brand Survey. For more information visit www.faithjames.com.
The Port St. Lucie Business Women is a professional organization dedicated to promoting the interests of business women and serving our community in an effective way. For more information visit www.pslbw.com. “Like” their Facebook page for updates about events, programs and community involvement.