September 20, 2011 Leave a comment
By branding yourself as well as your business, you set up a two-pronged marketing campaign. By establishing yourself as an expert in your field, you become the authority, the go-to person in your particular arena. This type of validation will then extend to your product or service. People buy what they trust. Establish yourself as an expert and you won’t need to sell your clients or customers, they will come to you. People will look to you not only for your product or service but also for you advice, your savvy, your expertise.
That is what made Steve Jobs so immensely valuable to Apple. Love him or hate him, people saw him as the innovator, as the one who changed the field, the one who came up with the most interesting and exciting products. The one they could trust. Whenever Steve jobs presented a new product, be it the Mac, iPhone or iPad, it wasn’t just a presentation, it was an event; it was an experience. Journalists would fall over one another to cover it. And it wasn’t simply a tech story; it was a pop culture event. It would be covered on every type of media outlet from Wired, to the Wall Street Journal, to CNN, to Extra.
Okay, so you’re not Steve Jobs. But you get my idea. An effective PR approach is to establish and brand yourself as you brand your business; and branding is perhaps the main function of a successful media relations campaign. Yes, you want to reach prospective customers and clients, but you also want to establish who and what you and your business are. Remember you’re not selling a product or service, you’re building a brand that establishes your value in the marketplace. That is precisely why you need to view PR as a long term process. It’s impossible to establish a brand in a few months. It is a cumulative process. You need to be consistent. You need to stay on course, particularly during the first six months, which are generally the toughest.
Building a brand comes down to creating a strong narrative, building a strong story that people relate to. That’s where Jobs understood the process more than most. The Apple brand came to be an ongoing story with new chapters being added with the launch of each new product. Jobs established himself first as a wunderkind, then as a visionary, then as a shrewd business leader who could turn a business model on its head and open new markets. But that legend didn’t simply happen on its own. It was a well crafted, strategically organized public relations campaign.
As an entrepreneur or business owner, take a page from one of the shrewdest marketers we’ve seen in ages. Brand yourself as you brand your business.
Copyright © Anthony Mora 2011