Topic Tuesday #131 2015/01/13 - "Branding"
I will get to the crusades next week, they proved too much for me this week.
Branding is critical to everything we do. Obviously the can of Coke or Pepsi are iconic examples of brands and the recognition embedded into our culture. Coke has the Polar Bears and Santa, Pepsi used Michael Jackson and their slogan, "The Choice of A New Generation" and we instantly know what they are and maybe we even want to have one right now.
Brands encompass texture, fonts, color combinations and selections, size and placement of every element, slogans, mascots, uniforms, and if done right - the brand tells a story that sticks with the consumer. But, branding goes further than companies hocking their wares.
People have brands too. Everything about how you present yourself is part of your brand. Say you are a mask wearing swashbuckling antihero with a penchant for carving the first letter of your moniker into your foes... All of that is the brand of Zorro. But you present your brand too, everyday. Your speech patterns, your tool choices, your favorite pen with your illegible signature, the way you walk, the clothes you wear. The entire package of you, is your brand. Just like Batman, Superman, Wonderwoman, Teddy Roosevelt, Donald Trump (oh the hair...) anyone that wears a uniform to do their job... even clandestine organizations have brands.
I had a mentor in college, Tom Begley. Not only was he the best Technical Director I have had the pleasure of working with, he was a genuinely wonderful person. In the morning, classical music played, only to be switched to classic rock in the afternoon. He wore the "same" clothes every day: a black shirt, dark jeans, cost conscious black sneakers, and a coating of saw dust. He would tidy up for headshots. Like he would throw a "nice" shirt on over the black tee. But, if you made it past the barbarian exterior, you got to find out what was behind the brand. He confided in me during a show run about his personal brand. "I dress like a barbarian so no one will bother me." He wanted to avoid distraction and devote time where he was needed. I miss him, and perhaps his brand helped to cement him in my mind.
What is your brand? Does it say what you want about you?