Your name is not your brand. Your personal brand is not about what you are, it is about who you are. So start building trust in you! That rubs off on your products and that puts money in your pocket in return.
Plain and simple, I have had enough of the bad advice floating around Google+ about “Your name is your brand…” To make it Chris-Tell-Clear that is complete BS.
Before you bounce saying I am some idiot, tell me this: Can you sell your brand? That name you claim is worth treating others poorly at times to build? NO! You cannot sell your name. Frank Kern realized this. Frank Kern inspires trust in his brands. But he can never sell the Frank Kern brand and walk away. I learned this and so have all the other big guys in Internet marketing in the last few years. That is why you see them building brands, not personal brands now.
Brands, like startups, like businesses, like THINGS… can be sold. Your personal brand goes with you where ever you go. Again, it is WHO you are, not WHAT you are. I can sell my startup, I can’t sell my Chris Lang brand and go be someone else.
Trust will get you more than evil tactics
In the last year I have been watching a group that considers themselves to be my competition or me theirs on Google+. They go around trying to stalk my best and brightest contacts thinking they will somehow turn them into their own supporters. Yes I used to do this too, but that was a long time ago. (sing Dum Dum Dum Dum Dum Dum Dum to the Farmers insurance theme please :)
If these same Dum Dums had simply gotten to know me, inspired trust of them, and maybe shared my posts in Google+, commented positively, hosted me as a panelist on their Webinars, you know, like I do with people I have trust in… What would have happened? Here comes the clincher, ready???
I would have introduced them to my contacts and recommended them whole heartily.
But when you view your name as a brand, as a product that must sell, it leads people to do things that turn people against you. Like not sharing other people’s posts or turning them into your own, building up sharing clans that ostracize those not in them. All in an effort to strengthen your supposed brand. Dum Dum Dum Dum Dum Dum Dum.
Trust, integrity, openness, sharing without the illusion that you will loose your social following, friendship, helping each other even though you have competing products, that is what we do in Internet marketing.
Early this spring, I saw two supposed marketers have a little spat because one, instead of sharing a post by another, shared the original blog as his own discovery and then simply added the name of the person who discovered it in the curation text. (Dum Dum Dum Dum Dum Dum Dum)
I asked him “WTH?” He, in his ever so skilled marketing speak replied “I am building my brand…” Ok, you can sing the Dum Dum song without my help by now. So go head.
Stealing others posts is a great way to not be trusted, not be thought of as a friend, not be introduced to others best contacts. Not to be considered a good person. Good way to build a following, not a good way to get to know top influencers that take you and your brands to a whole new level.
One guy went around stalking Mari Smith. If he had just treated me with respect on Google+ I would have simply introduced the fool to her. I was lucky enough to have Jack Humphrey around when I was this neive, he took the time to let my marketing chops grow in. I hope anyone reading this takes it to heart, and maybe I can do for you today what Jack did for me 5 years ago.
My friends ask me why I share everyone openly on Google+, why I host my competition on my HOAs, why I don’t care that these same people don’t reciprocate. I say that is how I am, I just don’t care and it is about my followers, not me.
People see more than you think they do. And if they ask others, they will tell them. Someday when these Dum Dums have been in business a bit longer, a few may get that. Most won’t. Right now I see too many having heard some bad advice about personal brands letting their ego get the best of them.
You name is not your brand everybody. It is your PERSONAL BRAND and it is about trust, not about selling anything. It is about WHO you are, not WHAT you are. Hope that clears it up to those of you that can get this. The rest will just keep giving bad advice and creating more brand name marketing incest children.