The air is thick with dust in the sweltering heat. The cattle are in a state of a controlled panic. Confused mooing adds to the organized chaos.
In the corner of the kraal, a fire heats the branding irons to red-hot. In the meantime, a cowboy has wrestled a steer to the ground. He reaches out for one branding irons.
With a sizzle, the fur and skin get a permanent mark. Upon release, the pain propels the steer into a full gallop. The steer has a brand for life! Its ownership becomes indisputable.
“Is your brand primed for success?” This question has persisted in my mind the last couple of weeks. I felt inspired into a critical re-think of my brand strategy and action. It also provides you with an opportunity to engage with the question too.
Branding goes back to ancient Babylon. A brand distinguished goods as well as provide proof of authenticity. In the 13th Century, there was the formation of craft guilds and the emergence of the middle class. Guilds made it mandatory for proprietary marks (brand) on goods.
Advertising was born to attract customers. Brands became part of everyday life.
I contemplated on the branding in the kraal. It convinced me that my brand needs to constantly encompass the right guide, kit and environment. Here are some lessons I am learning in these three areas.
1. Right guide…
Any meaningful win happens with people on your side. I can work hard to build my brand. But I know that there are others who have grown their own brand. There’s a project I am working on that involves video. After recording my first sessions, I shared it with members of Platform University.
The feedback was very constructive. But it took me back to the drawing board. It was painful. However, I believe it will only serve to strengthen the message my brand carries. With the right guides by your side, your brand will thrive. Your guide knows the terrain and can interpret the map correctly. Don’t go it on your own…
2. Right kit…
Attitude plays an important role in the character of a brand. It is your settled way of thinking or feeling towards your brand. Attitude is directly related to brand loyalty. It is represents a favorable feeling of towards my brand; both as a service or product and my leadership. This is also referred to as attitude branding.
The visual attributes of your brand help you to communicate your message to the outside world. These attributes help others to interact and experience with your brand in a better way. [I will talk more about these visual attributes in a forthcoming post.]
3. Right environment…
Where does your brand reside? It resides in the hearts and minds of other people. Depending on your field of operation, they vary from audiences, customers, clients, and prospects. Note that my brand doesn’t just exist or evolve off my effort only. Its robustness is measured against the quality of its impact on others.
May I propose that having an audacious team is part of brand robustness. These are my brand ambassadors; people who carry my brand and its vision. My brand becomes involved in other people. And this is also a promise that leadership delivers.
“Be more concerned about your character than your reputation. Your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are. ~Dale Carnegie
In my next article, I will take you through the objectives of branding. You will begin to see how this old-age practice can not only transform your thinking, but your leadership impact too.
Q: Is your brand primed for success? Have your say by clicking here.