Secret 4, which is equally important is Brand Brand Brand.
What I mean by this is that all of your efforts of secrets 1-3 will not be as effective and last over the long run if you don't personally brand yourself. People need to remember you so you need to stand out and become memorable!
You want people to remember you, not your company, for your expertise, skills, and interests. The key here is that people should remember you more than they will remember what company you work for. In order for this to happen, it takes a lot of hard work and persistence. If you utilize secrets 1-3 effectively, you will automatically brand yourself. That is the beauty of it!
Of course, you need to really work on your own branding to make it sustainable. Spend some time thinking about a subject that you are an expert about. Make that subject your own and start letting people know that you are an expert. Examples of subjects are: Internet marketing, business networking, cold calling, digital cameras. It doesn't have to all be about business. Pick something you are passionate about and have fun.
Here are few ways to let the world know about your expertise:
- Speak to groups about your subject
- Write articles in local newspapers or magazines
- Write a book
- Create a blog
- Distribute an email newsletter
Whatever you decide to do, make sure that you are consistent and persistent with your techniques. You need to hammer it home to people that you are the expert. Over time, they will come to realize this and will then come to you for your knowledge. It is a wonderful feeling when people approach you because they consider you a valuable resource.
For example, I have spent many years of hard work and consistency in my efforts to personally brand myself around relationship building. Techniques that I have used and still use include: speaking to groups, hosting my own event - Great Chicago Networking Extravaganza, creating an email newsletter - "Network Your Way to Success", developing a personal Website - Jacobsohn.com, and authoring my blog - Networking Insight.
If you are serious about your brand, which you should, then make the effort. In networking, it is too easy to get lost in the crowd so you need to be proactive and make sure that you stand above the pack and be heard. Some of the most well-known people in the business community are known more for their brand than their companies including Donald Trump, Bill Gates, Jeffrey Gitomer, and Steve Jobs.
What are you doing right now to promote your brand? What could you be doing better?