Branding for Women - Nuggets of Wisdom from a Surprisingly Useful Networking Event

Apr 2, 2015

Are you in a knot about this whole "branding" thing? How do you define branding? How do you do branding? I got the low-down from some strong and articulate women, here's what they had to say.



The Branding for Women panel included:

So what is a brand exactly? Apryl DeLancey had the best way of putting it. She said, "Make sure people know what to call you for." Which, when you think about it, is the most important marker. When people are ready to spend their money, do they know you're the person to call? Make sure they do.

Put another way, Vicki Wagner said, "Know what people want from you and deliver it." Amy Jurist of Amy's Culinary Adventures told a story about trying to host a vegan dinner party. The party tanked - they couldn't fill seats. As someone famous for "bacon dinners," Amy immediately realized her problem. She didn't deliver what people wanted from her. Her next dinner was back to bacon, and they were sold out.

Consistency is another key. One panelist said, "If you're really passionate about something it should ooze out of your brand." This really struck me... what does it mean to ooze a brand? I think it all comes back to making sure people know what to call you for. Not just when you're networking or at work, but as a lifestyle. As one panelist put it, you have to live your brand."Kanye, the Kardashians, like them or not they're living it."

Ok, so how do we get started branding ourselves? 

The panel suggested that we start with the end in mind and work backwards. Think big vision career and identify yourself by that. As one panelist put it, women are so many things - "president of my company, volunteer at my kids school, and I do yoga." You do all those things, but brand yourself around one. You don't hear Richard Branson saying he's a kite boarder or a breakfast connoisseur. He is also those things, but he brands himself around Virgin.

So our action item is to start branding ourselves around the one big thing. Once people know what to call us for, then we need to find out where our audience is and go get them.

And when the going gets tough, remember this: corporations that have females on their boards are outperforming those that don't. You can do this.

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An unexpected benefit to this event was the networking! Spending time with old friends and new. I went to the event with Melissa Carrera, a passionate connector who builds incredible teams. She brought this beautiful business card case that I plan to steal: 


I was thrilled to run into LaShon Renee of For the Love of Curls, a fellow member of the SoCal Blogger Society. LaShon recently began working with Chloe and Isabel and was carrying one of their bags, how do I get my hands on one of those?


And finally, it was such a treat to meet Jana’e Michelle of This Curvy Girl's Life. I don't know what she was carrying, but she looked great with it!


Do you have branding questions? Or answers? I'd love to hear what works for you, please add a comment below or send me a tweet!

This post is part of the A to Z Challenge, where 1000+ bloggers post every day during the month of April. Check out my last post, Apple's Future Handbag, or see all the posts here.

Many thanks to the LAX Marriott for hosting this incredible event!

3 comments:

  1. This is good advice. I have always thought some of the glib comments people make about their pastimes were corny and distracting. Like, what do I do with that little nugget of information?

    I remember a conference for teachers who taught oppositionally defiant children. This couple who were PhDs introduced themselves by saying they slept with each other. Their spiel had very little substance.

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    Replies
    1. Wow, what an interesting way to introduce yourself - and I can see why that wouldn't have been useful to you at all! I hope you can join us for the next event, it was full of substance and I think you'd love it.

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  2. Your brand is what youre an expert on or what you want to be known for. I love social media and am always game for conferences and learning new social media techniques. And i'm ALWAYS down for stealing cute purses from the gals who are carrying them!

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