When creating things, we are pressed to categorize and place names on them. Whether it be a new song or a painting, eventually the piece must be given a title, so that people can get a better understanding of what it is. Sure, you can listen or look at the thing and get a general idea, but the name usually helps drive the message home. Some might say you are branding your work. If you ask me, there is no question about it, YOU ARE.
When a group of musicians decide to give their collective self a name, that’s branding. Now you may not like this for whatever reason, but it is true. That is why it is good to assume responsibility for the brand that you have inserted into the public minutiae.
While it is hard to control how you are perceived, you can still be proactive in managing what is out there in relation to the brand that you are associated. Ultimately, your customers, fans or associates aid in defining your brand. You can help them by supplying them with the information you would like them to share.
On October 8th, in metropolitan area of Detroit, Michigan, there will be an event that is set to help you manage your personal brand. Aptly called BrandCamp, it features internationally-known speakers that run the gamut of entrepreneurs, communication professionals and folks with significant celebrity. This event was founded by Hajj Flemings, author of The Brand YU Life (Amazon affiliate link).
I was recently interviewed by David Murray for BrandCamp on my thoughts on personal branding. The main takeaway that I iterated is good for artists that lead “double lives.” Hopefully, both of your personalities are on the up-and-up or you will find yourself in a lot of trouble in places you might not want.
I would prefer the artists I support be who they are at all times, but if you must distinguish your different personas, then realize that your fans may be different than your friends. With that comes more work, because life is hard like that. I plan to talk about this more in future blog posts, so stay tuned.
Check out my brief interview and let me know what your thoughts on personal branding in the comments.