Have you ever wondered what life would be like if you were a well known celebrity? How must it feel when Michael Jordan walks into anyplace in Chicago? Do you think there are companies out there that don’t want someone well-known associated with their brand? Can you imagine a company saying, “I don’t want to use Michael Jordan to sell our basketball sneakers because he used the Chicago Bulls as platform to promote his own talents.”
In regular life, a strong personal brand can sometimes be intimidating for a company. I remember talking with my friend Jeremy Smith when Twine Interactive (now Fragment Labs) decided to hire Wayne Sutton as their social media & community strategist. I told Jeremy I thought it was a nice win-win situation; Twine would get exposure to Wayne’s extensive network and Wayne would get a chance to work through some great strategies. But not every company wants to take a chance like that, and some may even feel the person who put in the effort to build a personal brand is somehow doing something wrong.
My long-standing social media crush has spent her life honing her personal brand to the point that when I think of Outspoken Media, I think of Lisa. Lisa started building her brand while at SEO powerhouse Bruce Clay Inc. Does that mean that Bruce Clay got screwed when Lisa left? I don’t think so, I think they both benefitted from their time together.
I can’t think of any examples of people with notable personal brands that haven’t helped the companies that have let them be their best. If you can, please let me know if the comments.