The power of personal branding

Personal branding has become crucial for businesses these days, becoming the latest trend in the industry. Brands that have jumped on the trend have seen a surge in engagement on social media platforms.

Consumers might identify more with the brand when the founder and CEO of the companies start appearing in brand advertising. Brands like Sugar Cosmetics have initiated such trends after launching campaigns in which the CEO of Sugar Cosmetics endorses the product. Here’s what the experts have to say about the concept.

Brand-comm’s PR, Founding CEO, Sridhar Ramanujam said, “The general manager of the company or the CEO appearing in the advertisement as a spokesperson for the brand is not a novelty.”

He cites the example of automotive visionary executive Lee Iacocca who appeared in car advertisements, personally ensuring the quality of cars to assuage distrustful customers.

“Even in Chennai, it is very common for retailers like Vasant and Co and Balu Jewelers to feature in their advertising. The strategy helps brands send the strong statement that “I stand behind this product and I guarantee it to you.” It’s an interesting strategy and stands out from all the other ads that feature models,” he adds.

Social media influences personal branding

Social media has been instrumental in democratizing personal branding unlike TV, believes MadHawks founder and CEO Ravi Kumar.

“The 2021 Dogecoin episode and Elon Musk’s recent takeover of Twitter are two of the most powerful examples of the power of social media. Musk’s brand campaign has been one of the most successful to date. Its success has been greatly aided and amplified by social media, which also allows brand personalities to interact with customers and gauge their feelings about a product,” he says.

He adds that a brand’s success with customers can be further amplified by social media engagements, which can provide organic advertising.

Gupta points out, “Before social media and personal branding became popular, many celebrities on the big and small screen would open their own clothing, cosmetics and other personal branding businesses. This reverse personal branding used the market value of a human face. There are many examples of such brands in the market. In India, think Kay by Katrina Kaif, MyGlamm by Manish Malhotra, Arias by Lara Dutta, etc. Almost every Hollywood celebrity has a mainstream brand, including Skims by Kim Kardashian, KKW Beauty, KKW Fragrance, The Honest Company by Jessica Alba, Rare Beauty by Selena Gomez, and Wolverine actor Hugh Jackman’s Laughing Man Coffee.

Personal brand expands target audience across media platforms

Ramanujam also shared his thoughts on how personal branding could possibly help brands expand their target audience, but there needs to be a strategy in place.

“While personal branding is a powerful tool, relying solely on it to sell a product or service is still a bit of a stretch. Thought leadership can often lead to rapid growth for established brands. But, ultimately account, it all comes down to who the customers are and what they want. It should continue to focus on solving consumer problems and answering their questions. Simultaneously, the message needs to be reinforced across all other assets organic and paid, such as blogs, videos, website pages, ads, etc.,” he warns.

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