Monthly Archives: April 2012

Personal Branding gets strategic lessons from the ancient wisdom of Chess.

The game of chess has been providing intellectual euphoria since time immemorial; and now it is all set to give your personal branding style, a strategic makeover.

  1. Your Personal Brand (Your King): Your Personal Brand or Unique Brand Value Proposition that you treasure, is the King of the Game and is what is at stake. The end result of this stimulating game of branding is a truly invincible Brand You that has been created, to stand tall and strong. Your Personal Brand is a summation of the working protocol of your Brand Army-your knights, bishops, rooks and the pawns, which are the fierce guardians of your Personal Brand.
  2. Your Brand Positioning (Your Queen): Like the Queen, Your Brand Positioning is the trump card of your game. Use your Brand Positioning to reach out to your audience, as the exclusive value proposition of yourself. Use your Queen wisely, to strategically create a roadmap for your Brand, into the hearts and mind of your target audience. Remember, there is only one Queen, who is irreplaceable; you have to create an exclusive positioning in the Industry, which none other can replace.
  3. Your Brand Voice (Your Knight): Your Brand Voice is the communication strategy you adopt to announce your brand’s arrival on the circuit. It is your Knight in shining armour that is responsible to communicate your Brand Reputation, and more importantly defend it and sustain it. Ensure a healthy harmony between your digital brand voice and your physical brand voice, so that your knight can persistently check your desired brand reputation in the industry.
  4. Your Digital Brand (Your Bishop):  Exploit the creative pursuit of your Bishop to create an impressive and inspiring digital brand identity. Inspired by the Bishop’s diagonal pursuit for victory, your brand should diagonally i.e. creatively explore the realm of digital media, to create a formidable identity that reinforces your Rook’s(physical brand) efforts. Build an invincible digital brand by creating your unique digital DNA with the help of these 23 web chromosome pairs that redefine your personal brand, online.
  5. Your Physical Brand (Your Rook): Your Physical Brand is your most powerful asset; just like the Rook, YOU have the power to transform your game. Whether in its native element or during the magical move of castling (by turning on your brand’s charisma), your Rook is capable of being the one man army, with its innate might to move the mountains, single handed.  Revel in the glorious strength and presence of your physical brand, as it is indeed in totem, your personal brand.
  6. Your Brand Experience (Your Pawns): Hail thee true guardians of your mighty Brand, with much fanfare, applaud and reverence! People experience your Brand via a number of touch points; each of these touch point is a true guardian and champion of your personal brand. The eight humble pawns which shoulder the responsibility of sharing your brand experience with the world are here to claim the honor!
               i.   Your Brand Identity on Your Website
              ii.   Your Brand Credibility on Linkedin
             iii.   Your Brand Story on the Facebook timeline
             iv.   Your Brand Engagement on Twitter
              v.   Your Brand Karma on your knowledge hubs and Blogs
            vi.    Your Brand Inspiration via Personal Touch and Relationship
           vii.   Your Brand Influence across your Personal Surroundings
          viii.   Your Brand Worth in your Professional Network

So, draw out your Brand Board and set the stage for a Strategic Personal Branding Power Play.  Go ahead, Let the world now experience an Intellectual Brand-U-phoria; Courtesy: Your humble, yet invincible chess board.


Discover your Personal Brand’s SOUL: Build An Inspiring Brand Legacy!

What is the SOUL of your Personal Brand?

The Soul of your brand is the core value proposition that you bring to your community. It is your distinct brand proposition that strategically positions you in the mind and endears you to the heart of your target audience, where you shall dwell for good.

My Brand’s SOUL methodology provides you with a unique soul searching exercise that will empower you to discover the underlying pulse of your true brand identity: The Soul of your Brand.

Let’s get started, grab a pen and a paper and follow these steps religiously:

1. Enlist the 7 values that you will never give up on; not even at gunpoint! These can be anything like, honesty, compassion, elegance, discipline, independence etc.

2. Now revisit these 7 values and make a note beside each of it; whether it is your HEART value or your MIND value; your heart values are those values which are a result of your personal culturing and your mind values are a result of your professional nurturing. From the earlier example, for someone, honesty might be heart value if he has been cultured from birth to be an honest individual, and for him, independence might be a mind value if he has experienced independence after valuing its importance in his professional life. However, for every individual, his heart value and mind value need not be identically derived; which means that a heart value of one person, could realistically be the mind value of another person, and vice versa.

3. Now select the top 3 values from these 7 values, such that you have representation from both the categories (of heart and mind values) in the top 3, however do so, in the order of priority. For example, my personal top 3 of the 6 values are: elegance, creativity and perfection, where my heart values are elegance and perfection, and my mind value is creativity. The reason for maintaining a healthy balance of both these types of values is that it fosters a harmonious impact of personal culturing and professional nurturing on your brand.

4. The next step will be a lot more harder if you don’t have any acknowledged deep passions in life that gratify your life with pure exultation. If you have still not identified what makes your world tick, I advise you to discover it ASAP; because no amount of professional and financial success will address the void in your heart, that could perhaps be filled by reading a beautiful poem or a engaging book, or by taking a jog up the hill, or pouring out your dreams on a blank canvas. And if you are blessed with a number of such passions that enthral your life, jot them down and rate them in the order of importance in your life.

5. Now, reflect on your top priority value and your deepest passion; these are what make you, you. These constitute the Soul of your Brand. The art of infusing these values and passions into the Soul and the Life of your brand is nothing but the beauty of Personal Branding.

The SOUL of your Brand is what gets registered in your target audience’s mind as your Reputation and in your target audience’s heart as your Legacy, which draws him back to you, again and again! The Brand ‘I’MPACT Triangle below illustrates how the SOUL of your Brand goes on to become your brand reputation and lives on forever as your brand legacy in the world.

So go ahead and discover Your Brand’s SOUL: a truly inspiring brand legacy which you can bestow upon this world. And don’t forget to share your Brands’ SOUL with us, right here! Share it and Start Inspiring..

My Brand’s SOUL is Elegance and Eloquence; where Elegance (in Experience) is my dearest value and Eloquence (in Expression) is my deepest passion. And My Brand’s SOUL STATEMENT is:

Elegance, Personified.”

What is Yours?

Mind your Brand Voice by Voicing your Brand: Building Your Brand Reputation

Well My Personal Brand Voice says: Elegant & Eloquent; Now does it, literally?

How do you hear your Personal Brand Voice? Does it coyly whisper in your ears privately, sporadically shout out loud across mountain tops, or makes itself heard eloquently from time to time?

If you happened to pick the third option, you are good to go. If not, it’s about time to mind your brand voice by voicing your brand.

What is Your Brand VOICE?  Your Personal Brand Voice is in essence your Brand Reputation in the hearts and minds of your brand community or simply put your target audience, which comprises of your colleagues, seniors/ managers, clients/ customers, industry associates, past employers, family and friends. Your Brand Voice is the unspoken message that your Brand is sending them consistently and constantly via every brand experience of yours. It is the perception that you are feeding into their mind over a period of time which shapes itself as a steadfast brand reputation of yours.

When I say, My Brand Voice has been successful in its expression as Elegant & Eloquent; it only means that my brand community unanimously perceives me as an Elegant & an Eloquent Person. It is this humble brand reputation that has made home in their hearts and minds, as a result of my personal brand experience at their end.

So back to the question, how can you hear your brand voice, or let’s start at the primary question; how do I voice my brand?

  1. People experience you, form perceptions about you and build their private opinion about you, which is nothing but your brand reputation in their mind.
  2. So you really need to focus on the bottom line: what brand experience are you offering them? If you believe(or want to show) that you are a born leader, express your leadership potential in ways that are clearly visible and measureable; if you believe(or want to show)  that you are a global citizen, share your passion and knowledge on all things global to enlighten your brand community; if your believe(or want to show)  you are an achiever, make your goals and target known publicly and ensure that you achieve them; if you believe(or want to show)  you are a fun colleague/ boss, take your team for a surprise after hours treat; if you believe(or want to show)  you are an evangelist, take up noble or social initiative to engage and entertain your team; so on and so forth. Remember, You can control your brand voice; just work towards consciously building your reputation towards the brand identity that you desire.
  3. When you have worked hard enough towards creating that special experience for your brand community, do not shy away from reinforcing your brand voice out loud. Speak out about what you deeply believe in something and why it is so important for you to share the joy of that belief with everyone. A hint of narcissism is absolutely healthy for your brand voice.
  4. Lastly indulge in a regular pattern that reminds your target audience of your true brand voice, till it becomes synonymous with your core existence. Regular and consistent experience of your brand promise will enable your brand community to gradually form strong opinions about you that will eventually shape into an unequivocal brand reputation in their hearts and minds.

Your brand reputation is nothing but your persistent exhibit of your unique brand value proposition, which you religiously voice time after time. So start voicing your brand to create an eternal echo of your brand voice that enlightens every heart it touches.

So backtracking to the former question: How do you hear your Brand Voice? All I will say for now, watch this space for more…Very soon, I will share how can we hear our brand’s voice in its truest form.