Archive for the ‘Personal Branding Blog’ Category

Personal Brands are Today’s Leaders, Not Tomorrow’s

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

GirlOuch! I keep reading about personal branding being a tool that sets you up to be tomorrow’s leaders. Why do old people always say this to young people? And, why do young people repeat it?

Does anyone wake up in the morning and say, “I hope I’ll be tomorrow’s leader.” When they wake up the next day, they a) discover that hope is not a strategy, and b) that tomorrow is yet another day away.

Don’t be fooled by anyone who says you can’t lead today. Truth is: if you’re not leading something today, someone else is. And, they aren’t waiting for you to wake up and say, “Thanks for keeping my spot warm, move over, I’m leading now.”

They will lookdown at you from their perch of leadership (no matter how minor) and kick you back down among the crowd of followers. (They probably won’t actually kick you. What they will do is more covert: steal your ideas, not pass along a great concept you offered up or just talk you down to their leader.)

Personal brands of earth: wake up. It’s today. Lead today. Whenever it turns out to be tomorrow, you just keep on leading. Don’t be fooled by that “tomorrow’s leader” ambition killer Kool Aid, even if it they say it’s good for you. It’s not. It’s good for them.

Seth Godin famously says that you belong to a tribe (maybe several) and within that tribe you can step up and lead it. Maybe you’ll lead a particular sub-group or lead on a particular project.

I’m sure you can think of something in every segment of your life, where you can initiate a plan, project or program and lead. Consider your work, social life, community, worship group, family, sports club, hobby… the places where you can exercise leadership is almost infinite.

When leaders above you and around you see you leading by virtue of your own initiative, you’ll be promoted as a leader of greater and greater authority. Your sphere of influence and control will widen. You’ll meet other leaders. You’ll recommend each other for choice assignments. You’ll invent. Become CEO of your life and probably others.

Study leadership, and make that part of your personal brand. Remember you take on responsibility for the people you lead, just as much as the outcome from their actions.

The sooner you take leadership roles, the better.

Right now would be good.

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Personal Brands Celebrate 2010 Before It Happens

Tuesday, January 12th, 2010

By now you’ve probably amazed yourself with your ability to stick to your resolutions! LOL.

FocusDon’t worry. Now is NOT the right time to assess how 2010 is going – or how you’re doing. The only thing to judge during week two of the year is this:

Do you have a clear, crisp, compelling focus for your personal brand in 2010 – and are you planning to relentlessly pursue your goals?

Have you taken THE PLEDGE?

Before your brain hears the refrain of anyone else’s plans, commands or demands: pledge allegiance to yourself, every morning.

That’s all you need to deserve a celebration, every day.  Celebrate that you have vowed to overcome any obstacle. Take pride and joy, you’ve joined an elite corps of people living on purpose. Everyday, take the pledge to honor yourself, your goals, and your sense of purpose. With this ritual, you earn the badge of personal branding, and the cascade of success and happiness that comes when you decide how to live your life to its peak.

Intention + Affirmation + Determination = Celebration

What’s the point of personal branding? It’s to be widely known, appreciated and paid for the talent, quality, service or accomplishment you decide is authentically who you are and what you want to do.

Before you become famous, you’d better decide who you are. Otherwise, you’re going to be known for what other people think of you – and what they want from you.

There’s an old expression that uses the word “famous” in a way that applies to all of us. The host at a party would use the term, when you were being introduced to a stranger. In hopes of quickly helping the two of you find something to chat about, the host would announce something like, “You’ll be interested to learn that Ellie is famous for her chocolate chip cookies!” Wow. Ellie is writing a novel based on her travels to Sri Lanka and seeking a publisher.  But now – because someone else decided what is interesting about her – she is about to spend a precious half-hour with a new contact, answering questions about semi-sweet versus milk chocolate chips, and how long to cream butter and sugar before sifting in flour.

What worse: because you never get a second chance to make a first impression, she will be known forever as the chocolate chip cookie lady. She could be standing face to face with the executive publisher of Pegasus Media World, and completely miss the biggest opportunity she’d ever have to be a published author. Plus, the publisher misses out on a best-selling author.

What are YOU missing, if you fail to hone and convey a crisp, clear and compelling message of how you would like to be introduced, known and celebrated? You risk being famous for something that OTHER people like about you or want from you. That could be staying in your position as an assistant, when you really are ready to be a director. Being seen as a new college graduate looking for work, rather than a chef deciding on how to best channel your culinary prowess.

What are you famous for now? When others talk about you or think about you, is it for what you want known about you? Have you known some people for quite a while – and they don’t know what you want to do, where you want to go, and what opportunities you are looking for?

That’s where the pledge is your greatest asset in creating the life you want. You train your brain to not let a minute go by without helping you find the right opportunities, and stay on your path – no matter what distractions there are. Without conscious effort, you won’t let anything come between you and what you visualize as the big juicy prize. You see yourself taking the victory lap with a stadium full of screaming fans who can’t believe their good fortune. They’re celebrating your success. They got to pay you to do what you most want to do in the world.

Before you shut your eyes tonight, crisp up an ideal image of what your personal brand is – what you are doing that you want to do more of, or want to do that will actualize the ideal you. Then, wake up in the morning and take the pledge. Put it up on your bulletin board.

Tweet it to people who need to know: this is your year and it can be theirs, too! THE PLEDGE:

This is my year.

I’m fighting for it.

Fighting to keep the big, juicy prize in mind so it lands in my hands by the end of this year.

Fighting to see and stay on the road, high or low.

No stopping for distractions, no matter how attractive.

I have no respect for roadblocks: inadvertently or purposely cast in my path.

I’m fighting to obliterate my own inclination to please, appease or do anything less than seize the day; every day this year.

I’m exploding with energy, but conserving it, too.

I vow to plow through walls that surround me and beat anything that threatens to defeat me.

I own my ideas, my process, my results and my truth.

I own the rights. I own the turf. I own this fight, from round one.

I will make it to the big dance with a performance that’s bigger than a personal best.

I will cross the line in record time, with a valedictory lap on the track, flashing the victory sign.

This is my year.

I’m fighting for it!

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Buy Stadium Naming Rights, Without Spending a Penny

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009

yournamehereNance Rosen, your name, Verizon, Twitter and Jenny Craig: all brand names with something in common. We all are – or can be – marquee names on stadiums that draw hundreds of thousands – even millions – of fans now and for decades into the future. It’s true, it’s inexpensive and it’s easy.

How would you and I join a major telecommunications firm, a social media reference, and a weight loss chain? Consider we would also be joining some ignominiously branded locations – which made the “Worst Stadium Names” list. These include:

  • Pizza Hut Park (Dallas, Texas)
  • Arena (Phoenix, Arizona)
  • Save On Foods Arena (Victoria, BC)
  • Four Seasons Hotel Chain Centre For the Performing Arts (Toronto, Canada)
  • EasyCredit-Stadion (Bundesliga’s FC Nuremberg)

Admittedly, no one is proud to say, “Hey, come see me at Save On Foods Arena.” It sounds more like a downscale food pantry for the homeless than an entertainment destination. But, be honest, your personal brand and mine probably shouldn’t complain if we are drawing the crowds these places do. So, how do we do it?

Write a blog. The secret is to write in as narrow a niche as possible, and “own” the virtual stadium for ideas, comments, arguments, news and feeds about that topic. It’s your field of dreams, as is Seth Godin’s, Chris Brogan‘s and the PersonalBrandingBlog published by Dan Schwabel.

Build it – with enough compelling content – and your audience will find you. Even the great names in your industry, along with hundreds of thousands more, will come. Maybe not all at one time for one “event,” but if you write reasonably well – and provoke enough attention, they will come. It helps if you have enough PR savvy to write an SEO’d press release on a hot subject a few times a month. Maybe nab an interview, even a podcast with a big name. Even better, if you can afford to send out your releases over the wire to media. If you don’t have the cash for your first wire, email me ([email protected]) and I’ll help you out as my “blog-warming” gift (or “virtual stadium-warming” gift) to you.

That is all it takes now for you to drive more traffic than John Mayer touring with another bad jazz album. I know. I just coached a first time blogger (in advertising) pin a NY Times best-selling author to do the blogger’s first ever podcast and blog post. The hardest part for the virgin blog site owner was figuring out how to hit record and save for the podcast.

I know we all want it to be more complicated – especially those of us with successful blogs and recognized personal brands. But your personal brand launch and the beginning of drawing an audience, starts with a free account on WordPress.

If you haven’t created a viable home for your personal brand, start now. There’s no rent to pay, no seats to fill and the popcorn is almost free if you already have a microwave.

Now do this:

  1. Pick your topic.
  2. Get on wordpress with your first 250 word post.
  3. Send an email to the number one author in your field to interview.
  4. Learn blogtalkradio, if you want to break into podcasting on the cheap.
  5. Leave a comment with your email below if you want to create buzz with a wire announcing your grand opening.

Then, get ready to play ball in the big leagues, in the comfort of your home stadium!

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Are You Absent, Invisible, a Reflection or an Impression?

Tuesday, September 1st, 2009

Publisher Nance Rosen’s weekly Syndicated Column on Are You Absent, Invisible, a Reflection or an Impression?

You may be among us and we might not know. If you’re not blogging or at least leaving comments on blogs, not tweeting or at least re-tweeting, or haven’t posted or at least contributed to a thread on a social network: you may be present but virtually invisible to us.

By selectively interacting, you shape how we know you and insure that we consider you. By your posted reflections about others’ ideas, you give us some way to see if you are the right person to hire, promote, or otherwise include in our companies or projects…

Read more on the Personal Branding Blog

Are You Absent

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Write Your Will and Start Your Life.

Tuesday, August 25th, 2009

My Tuesday Syndicated Column on  Write Your Will and Start Your Life.

Great athletes start with the finish line in mind. Lance Armstrong doesn’t hop on his bike and wonder where he’ll end up. Michael Phelps doesn’t jump in the pool and paddle around. Why would you take to the open road of your career or business without a destination in mind and expect to wind up in the ideal place?

Clearly, this is a time for you to have a clear outcome in mind for yourself, your career or business. Part of your brand is who you are, but a more present part of it is: who you are becoming?

Read the entire post at the Personal Branding Blog.

Write Your Will and Start Your Life

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Bright Shiny Objects and Babies Like Me on PBB

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

My Tuesday Syndicated Column on  Bright Shiny Objects and Babies Like Me.

How do you find the brand in you? Really.

bright and shiney

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Rocking Your Reputation – My column for Personal Branding Blog

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009

What are you worth? At least one-third of your market value comes from your reputation – whether the brand is you, your company, product or service. Reputation- not a head-to-head comparison of the features that relate to your skills, products or services – accounts for why Johnson & Johnson’s market capitalization is so much greater than Unilever. How does YOUR market perceive who YOU are? And, what are the high priority elements that effect your image? Learn, decide and change what matters most.

Happy to cover the ways reputation rocks your world this week in my column for the Personal Branding Blog.

PBB blog

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