Category Archive for: ‘sameness’

2016: How Are You Remembered?

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922757_60722554Before you think I’m asking you to make a new year’s resolution that you won’t keep, think again and choose to see things differently.  Yes, a new year is here.  With it can come the drudgery of the past or an opportunity for you to develop a brand for yourself that will leave you happier and more successful. Each of us has a choice.

I personally don’t get the concept of a new year’s resolution.  I believe I need to always be resolved to be better and think differently.  Otherwise, my brand stagnates and, in a way,  so does everything I touch.  Besides, resolutions sound kind of scary to me.  It feels like there’s no turning back — if I don’t keep my resolution or do it “good enough”, then I fail.

Deliberate brand creation is a marathon, not a new year’s sprint.  That’s what I always tell all our clients and also why 99% of our clients are in some sort of maintenance program with me once we have developed their initial brand. The process is never “over”, your brand is never “done”.  The good news is your brand just evolves and grows with time as you grow and change.  That’s exciting! That takes time, effort, deliberate thought and deliberate action and of course, a plan.

So let’s look at it differently and have you develop your brand from a new perspective.  Close your eyes and picture yourself on December 31, 2016.  An entire year has come and gone.

How is it that you are remembered  by the world on 12/31/16?  As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived, this is to have succeeded”.  Barbara Stanny said in her fantastic book, Sacred Success, “All that matters is that your legacy reflects your purpose, makes you proud, brings you pleasure, and inspires or improves something or someone else”.

The memories others have of us are our brands.  Think in terms of memories. It’s then easier to relate to branding as a concept.

To get started, ask yourself:

  • What’s been my contribution in 2016? In answering this look at:
    • Did I have a particular cause and/or purpose greater than myself for which I stood?
    • How do people remember me emotionally?  As Carnegie once said,  we are all creatures of emotion, and not logic.  Emotions go farther than any of us want to believe. Positive emotions leave us with positive memories.
    • Did my contribution leave joy in the hearts of others ? Notice I did not mention leaving joy in the mind’s of others. The emotion of joy is captured in our hearts.
    • Did I choose to see people’s differences only, or was I compassionate towards others and towards MYSELF choosing to see our similarities?
  • How can my contribution continue to grow (and my brand develop) in the upcoming year?

Here’s to a 2016 filled with all the wonderful memories that leave you as the brand you want to be remembered by.

Variety Is The Spice Of Life- And Your Brand!

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So we finally got some real rain here in Southern California over the weekend.  I mean rain that soaked everything and caused flash flooding.  Yay, I say!

We don’t get rain very often in San Diego.   We’ve had a drought advisory for a long time.  Grass was no longer green, but brown dirt.  I mean 24/7 sunshine is great, but it brings about its own set of issues.

So why do you figure that when we finally got rain over the weekend, the response was not absolute joy from everyone?! Don’t get me wrong- there were lots of grateful and happy people like me.  However, I interacted and saw lots of people who were less than happy.  They were grumbling about getting wet, having their weekend activities ruined, etc. Some of them were talking about the unfairness of it all.  The unfairness of rain- really?

As we’ve all heard, variety is the spice of life.  Without variety and change, things get stagnate.  So what does rain and variety have to do with your brand? Good question.

Climate can say a lot about the residents that live there.  I grew up in Indiana, lived in Washington DC for many years and now live in San Diego. I travel a lot. Over time I started to notice that those people living in four season climates were generally very different than those living in tropical climates.

I remember growing up in Indiana how much fun the change in seasons brought for me.  We used to gear up for Fall- raking leaves, bobbing for apples, getting our costumes ready.  We used to rejoice as Spring arrived.  We really looked forward to the warmth and sunshine and appreciated the Summer heat and fun.  We prepped for winter by sealing the deck and driveways and getting the car “winterized”.  We got our sweaters out and got our sleds out of the garage.

I’ve discovered people living in four season climates are usually more adaptable and resilient in life. They tend to go with the flow and are more “prepared” for life, shall we say.  I believe it has to do with the fact that the change in seasons brings about the mentality of change.  Change is about variety and requires us to adapt and grow and stretch ourselves.

In brand development, the goal is to be a creative thought leader that people remember and are emotionally attracted to. Creative thought-leadership comes about when we access our right-brain more often.  If you don’t like variety and change, then odds are you are not using your creative mind as much as you could be.  Odds are you are using your left- brain more.  This leaves you linear and analytical, but not as creative and dynamic and memorable.  People tend to remember your brand much better if you are dynamic, flexible, and creative.

So what does this mean for you? Stop and consider:

– Do you live in a climate that promotes change and variety? If not, stay extra vigilant in exercising your creative side. Try painting, writing poetry or fiction, or singing.

– Where in your life are you stagnating and not open to change or growth?  What’s one simple change you can make to today?

First, Know Yourself So You Know What To Market.