Shakespeare was way ahead of his time and he was maybe and probably THE best storyteller that ever lived. He didn't focus on his brand, maybe he didn't even know what his brand was.
But he knew that people loved stories.
You may not even realise it, but you are the biggest story ever told. Everything about you, your journey, your experiences, your challenges, your failures, your successes and breakthroughs, your experience of love and of not love. All of it has made you who you are today. One BIG story. You are your own biggest brand.
I have a phrase that goes something like this.
With the advent of Social Media you have now become a personal brand. You'd better take that responsibility seriously!
And why wouldn't you take that seriously? The way you show up on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc. tells the viewer a story about you. One thing's for sure, they will judge you in an instant. Some positive and of course some negative.
It's no surprise therefore that every Social Network is focussing more and more on STORIES.
Because they know that every single one of us crave stories. We search for them every single day and you don't even know you're doing it. We're literally hard-wired to look for stories. Not sure? Okay, this is what you might be doing every single day:
- Wake up and pick up your smartphone. Look for any news, check-out Facebook, Twitter and maybe even LinkedIn. It's not that much will have happened overnight, it's the stories that are breaking first thing in the morning. And guess what, all the news media have been working the previous day and also through the night to make sure that fresh news is there for you to satisfy your daily appetite.
- Some of you, although it's becoming less, will pick up a newspaper that the paper girl or boy left in your mailbox in the morning. Or you pick one up on your daily commute to the office.
- Even before that, you may be eating breakfast or drinking your daily fix of caffeine whilst watching the news on your TV news channel of choice.
On average you are spending one hour per day on Social Networks. You may be sharing your stories through photos, videos, live transmissions and on top of that you are reading even more stories. Stories that inspire, stories that make you laugh, cry and feel disgust, stories that will make you unfriend someone, stories that will make you judge.
And all because you LOVE stories.
To be a great storyteller you need a great canvas. Your canvas are the Social Networks that you are part of and appear on. To begin with you can do a quick self audit with these key areas and ensure some consistency across all of them:
- Are your Social Network handles all the same?
- Is your profile photo the same across all of them?
- Is your strap-line or headline the same across all of them?
- Is your long description broadly similar, I know they all have different allowable character counts.
- Is your header or banner image the same across all channels, I know they all need different sizing, but the same is always best.
Whether you run your own business or whether you work for a great organisation, developing yourself as a great personal brand is the best story you can create for yourself. Success!
LinkedIn created a brilliant eBook with my favourite illustrator. @gapingvoid (Hugh Macleod) creates the most amazing messages through his illustrations. Read more about him and @gapingvoid here: http://www.gapingvoid.com/blog/team-members/hugh-macleod/
Regularly I will share one of the articles and illustrations from the eBook and give you my opinion, interpretation, insight and meaning of the words and illustrations.