Promoting That Brand Called YOU
Without promotion, something terrible happens—nothing! -P.T. Barnum
Jane and Charles are colleagues in the finance organization for a Fortune 250 company. Jane accepted an offer from another company today to join the company as Director, Business Planning & Analysis for the company’s largest business unit.
Jane frequently receives phone calls from executive recruiters presenting opportunities at other companies. She declined previous opportunities. She pursued the opportunity she accepted because it presented a very significant increase in base salary and bonus and a clear path to advance to a senior executive position in the company.
Jane and Charles joined their current company as new college graduates 6 years ago. They both earned their MBAs through an online MBA program. They are both solid performers. Charles’ career is stuck in neutral. He has been in the position of Manager, Financial Analysis for 3 years. He has expressed his desire to advance with his boss, but nothing seems to happen. He seldom receives calls from executive recruiters. He submits his resume but never hears anything from the recruiters. When he follows up with recruiters, he is told that other candidates were selected.
Charles wants to get his career out of neutral. He is wondering why Jane receives so may calls from recruiters, that recruiters follow up with her after she submits her resume, and that recruiters try to convince her to interview for positions. Charles invites Jane to dinner on him to get ideas from Jane on how she increases demand for Jane. Jane accepts his invitation. This is how the discussion went at dinner.
Charles: Jane, why are you in such high demand? How do you do it?
Jane: It’s all about promotion?
Jane: Yes, promotion. You and I have participated in planning introductions of new products and product enhancements.
Charles: Yes, we have. Introducing new products and product improvements require a lot of planning. Our company has been quite successful at this.
Jane: What do you think would happen if we did not advertise the introductions, offer trade promotions and coupons, or use social media.
Charles: Launches would fail. No one would know about the product introductions.
Jane: Exactly! Product promotion can be applied to managing our careers. How can we expect opportunities to come our way if the people who are hiring decision makers or are connected to them know about us? I promote the Jane Brand. Doing nothing is not an option.
Charles: How do you promote the Jane Brand?
Jane: Let’s take a look at my LinkedIn page. (Jane pulls out her tablet and goes to her LinkedIn page.)
Charles: What a page! You list your significant accomplishments. You post articles. You belong to several professional organizations and LinkedIn groups. And, you have 2,500 people in your LinkedIn network.
I have a LinkedIn page, but nothing like yours. I thought that my education, experience, and interests were enough to generate interest in me. And, I only have 150 LinkedIn connections. Your page is an eye opener for me.
Jane: Let me tell you about my 2,500 LinkedIn network connections. (Jane shares a diagram on her tablet with Charles.)
I started with 25 people with whom I had a strong relationship. I called these individuals my Inner Circle. Through connections my Inner Circle had, I connected to Tier 1. Tier 1 connections led to Tier 2 network connections and so forth. I ended up with a Jane’s Promotion Force who could help me promote the Jane Brand.
Jane: I also received requests from individuals who read my articles to join my network. Some of these requests were from executive recruiters and people at companies. And, the comments I posted on articles written by others attracted requests to link with me. I let people know that the Jane Brand existed. I ended up with a Jane’s Promotion Force of 2,500 individuals who could help me promote my brand.
Charles: Go, Jane!
Jane: By the way, I also received phone calls from individuals inquiring about my interest in pursuing opportunities at their companies.
Charles: Guess what I am going to do starting tomorrow to get my career out of neutral?
Jane: Promote the Charles Brand.
Charles: You got it!
Jane: Go, Charles! (Jane pumps her fist.)
Jane operates The Business of Jane.
She understands how to apply Promotion, one of the 6 Ps of Marketing.
Is your career stuck in neutral?
Are you promoting your brand?
How would you answer the question, “Why would anyone want to hire or promote you”?
How well can you communicate your Personal Brand Statement?
Did this article generate an AHA moment for you?
I invite you to share your comments, experiences, and suggestions. This helps me provide information that may help you address your career opportunities and challenges.
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Next week’s article will continue to explain how you can apply the 6Ps of Marketing to experience the career you want to have.
Linwood Bailey is a career coach and the author of The Business of Me: Your Job … Your Career … Your Value. The Business of Me provides a career management process and information designed for today’s business professional. Since 2008, Linwood has enabled business professionals to manage their careers. Linwood, the been there coach, provides innovative career management solutions derived from his 34 years of experience managing functions and people in multiple industries, regions, and corporate cultures.
Founder, Fields of Success, LLC
Enabling professionals to convert career challenges into career success stories.
Our careers are our most important economic asset.