Branding is a very important term in our world today. What is really important to understand about “branding” is why it is different from “marketing”. Branding is, simply put, “the emotional impact that you strive to make on your audience”. Marketing is “promoting your brand, to gain the trust or support of those that are targeted”. This in turns leads to advertising, which is “an attempt to sell a specific product or service that is connected to your brand”. The end objective of these three tasks is that people will eventually give you their hard-earned money, in exchange for your product or service, and that they will do so repeatedly.
This is pretty simple to grasp when it comes to business. However, this concept factors into your everyday life in a very significant, and often unnoticed, way. Keep reading…
I once learned from Earl Nightingale that “everyone is always selling something”. Whether as a parent, friend, lover, employee, CEO, or etc. – you are selling your authority, dreams, relationship status, workplace value, and so on. But if you are always selling something, then you must first be advertising it. And, if you are advertising it, you must have first marketed it. And, to market it, there has to be an “it” to market, which means at some point in time, you had to create “it”. So, what exactly is “it” that we’re marketing? Our brand!
But wait, what brand? I’m so confused… LOL
As a professional Brand Consultant, one of the most important things that I have learned is that YOU ARE ALWAYS BUILDING YOUR BRAND! Whether intentionally or unintentionally, every word you speak, every hairstyle, every outfit, the way you carry yourself, who you associate with, and every keystroke that you publish anywhere online is building your brand. This is not only true in business; it is also true in life. This is what I refer to as “Life-Branding, the (usually unintentional) branding of who you are in this world; the emotional impact you make on the people you encounter from day-to-day.”
The truth of the matter is, all day, every day, you are subconsciously marketing your “life-brand”. In other words, “you are promoting the way you make people feel about who you are, in order to gain their trust and cause them to believe in you. This is what I call “Quality-of-Life-Marketing“. So, what is the purpose of this kind of branding and marketing? It’s the same purpose as any other kind, to get to advertising of course! See, along with life-branding and quality-of-life-marketing, you are “Day-to-Day-Advertising” as well. Which means, “on a daily basis, you are attempting to sell yourself”.
So, let’s put that all in perspective…
We now know that everyone is always selling something. But we’re not talking about a retail store, or service. We are talking about the business of life. In the case of life-branding, YOU ARE THE PRODUCT of your own life! What you are branding, marketing and advertising to sell is yourself. And what every seller needs to achieve success, is a buyer. The seller’s end objective is to make a profit (increase in value). The buyer’s end objective is to improve the quality of their own life through the purchase (increase in happiness).
In this business of life, we must make decisions daily about who we will “buy life” from. The “life-currency” we use is our time, emotion, energy and ingenuity. These are the natural resources of human life and we spend them daily. We spend them on what others are selling and we are usually very choosy about where we spend it and how much we spend! We evaluate, judge and reject whether to make the purchase. We subconsciously ask ourselves, thousands of times a day, “Will this increase my happiness?” Because, who wants to spend money – life-currency – on something worthless? We get that, right? But did you ever realize other people are making the same decision about you every day too?
See, the tricky thing about life-branding is that we do it unintentionally. Most people don’t deliberately put effort into shaping how others see and receive them; being intentional about the emotional impact that is made and overall impression that is left. MOST people do not take the time to create a quality-of-life-marketing campaign, to get people to believe in who they are and build trust as a worthy and valuable human. And although we all day-to-day-advertise, hoping in the end that people will spend their natural resources on what we are selling, we do it without thoughtfulness or any real goal markers for success. We seldom stop to think about the end objective of the buyer in this “business of life transaction”, which is to improve the quality of their own life and progress toward happiness.
The unintentional nature of life-branding causes it to differ from corporate branding, in a most detrimental way. Companies and corporations intentionally shape how you see and receive them, based on what they need you to believe, thereby increasing the likelihood of closing the deal, turning a profit, and increasing in value. But in life, we build our own life-brand based on how we currently see ourselves, not on how we want others to see us. We market based on what we currently believe about ourselves, not what we want others to believe about us. Essentially, a marketing campaign is supposed to convince the audience that your brand will give them a better quality of life. But the marketing we do to promote our life-brand, is based on the quality of life WE THINK WE DESERVE, which is not necessarily the one we DESIRE (or one anyone else would desire either). That is why I call it “quality-of-life-marketing”.
The message is this…
Moving forward, I want you to remember what you’ve learned today. You are always “Life-Branding“, making an emotional impact on the people you encounter. You are always, “Quality-of-Life-Marketing“, promoting your life-brand to make the people you encounter believe in you, and your ability to give them the same quality of life that you think you deserve (whether for or for bad). Lastly, you are always, “Day-to-Day-Advertising”, attempting to sell yourself in exchange for the natural resources of other humans, to increase in personal value. As a friend, lover, parent, child, sibling, employee, boss, consumer, entrepreneur, worshiper, and most importantly, as who you are to yourself – this cycle of branding, marketing and advertising, ensues 24/7.
So please, BE INTENTIONAL ABOUT IT! At the end of the day, (literally and figuratively) the hope is that you have impacted people emotionally, to the degree that you make the right connection. You want to cause people to believe in your campaign, and be willing to give you their life-currency, in exchange for what you are selling of yourself that day. The end objective for everyone involved is that YOU PROFIT, AND THEY BENEFIT. Don’t ever forget that you are always making an emotional impression on those you encounter, promoting an image of who you are, and attempting to get people to buy how you make them feel. If they don’t believe what you are selling is going to improve the quality of their life, you will not close the deal. Even worse, they may pay you with counterfeit currency, or charge you emotionally for wasting their life-currency!
I’m just going to let that last sentence sit; take it in slowly, process the metaphoric implications of that statement…
In conclusion my friends, the objective of this post is to sell you on this concept. I want you to buy it, improve the quality of your life, and progress toward your happiness. My advertised price is your positive emotional reaction to this concept, paid for with a like, a comment and a share. You’ve just been pitched on Life-Branding, make the purchase and spread the wealth!
Empowered by love, Inspired by intimacy
Laneen a. Haniah
~Dr. Intimacy, The Surgeon for Your Soul~
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