No, having a sustainable, competitive advantage in a world where transience wins, is not a cliché.
Quite paradoxically, though small transient wins, consistently, you are on your way to winning as a personal brand.
So how do you solidify your permanence when it comes to building a stable yet agile personal brand?
Focus on these 3 levers – and you are going to be successful.
- Build career campaigns instead of infrequent job hunting. The End Of Competitive Advantage book written by Rita Gunther McGrath communicates this point quintessentially well. In order to succeed in business, you have to create a brand narrative that is predicated on establishing career campaigns and weaving in all the elements together that best define your career roadmap. Why are they called career campaigns? It’s because every campaign has milestones and a said purpose that defines its longevity and key performance drivers that led it to succeed or terminate. And with every tipping point in your career/ business comes another threshold that flows into another one – that way you can connect the dots and keep building your ‘qualified brand consensus’. The same can be imbibed into a business/ marketing context as well: every marketing campaign can set a definitive, well-planned tone/ context for an ensuing campaign with a connected, integrated brand narrative.
- Think ahead of the established thought-leadership. This bears some thought. Not every business can sustain long when they don’t think of market dynamics in advance. While many businesses can regurgitate what’s been said in the industry – in the form of blogs, whitepapers, e-books or general analysis of the industry – but very few can think in an anticipatory way. It takes some guts to challenge the status-quo and arrive at decisions that meld the opinions across your business divisions and emerge as useful, informative – and like I said: anticipatory content. Constantly asking the question ‘what’s next?’ alongside being aware of this question’s context in the present creates excellent bouts of provocative content. One great example mention in this context is of Impetus technologies: they have created remarkable, futuristic content by thinking forward all the time when it comes to Big Data. That’s how they are able to create new software products that meet the increasing challenges of implementing big data for different customers spanning industries like financial services, healthcare, retail and more.
- Understand your brand’s emotional territory. Whether you’re B2B, B2C or B2B2C brand – you are dealing with people who fundamentally play along emotions, and to a certain extent, on a functional level. Whether there is a social motivation behind your B2B brand, or a pure emotional, inspirational context behind a B2C brand, or perhaps somewhere in between when you are operating as a B2B2C brand, understanding your audience’s emotions well will help you maximize your efforts towards those ‘defining emotional drivers’ and create an imagery that is not short-lived. If you understand your customer’s/ audience’s emotional territory, then, if not totally disrupt, you can tap into their emotions pretty well and make them choose you over others on an autopilot basis. And so, as mentioned in the book, The Growth Director’s Secret, you don’t have to be generic/ vague when just looking at basic demographics and psychographics, you can start tracing the emotions and create an emotional connect very then through your brand’s story.
Adopt the above levers – and you will definitely be on your way to be having a sustainable, competitive advantage – be it as a personal brand or as a business brand.
I love concluding with these two words: Go Bears!
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