Says Simon View All Posts

says simon featured image

About Says Simon

Steve Simon is vice president of Van Eperen & Company, a Rockville-based strategic communications and public relations firm. A longtime Montgomery County political observer, he has been in the media and public relations field locally for nearly 30 years. In addition to serving as an independent public relations consultant, he... Read more

Discover Other Local Blogs

We have a great number of amazing blog posts contributed by our local bloggers. Discover what is happening in your neighborhood by reading their latest posts.

Brand Management: Not Just for Big Business

Brand management is big business. But more and more, we are all learning that brand management is not just for business, but for individuals too.

To some extent, that goes for all of us, as virtually everyone who is living and operating in the age of social media needs to be cognizant of how they are managing their personal reputation or “brand” – but so much more so when an individual’s fame or stature has essentially reached the level of having become a “household brand.”

Such is the case with major politicians, prominent business leaders, entertainment celebrities, and, oh yes, big-time athletes. Sometimes an individual’s drawing power is so great that huge corporations will stake a significant portion of their own brand and reputation on that individual, often hoping to “ride that horse all the way to the bank,” so to speak.

Decorated Olympian and U.S. skier Lindsey Vonn is a case in point, as The Washington Post reported this week in a story essentially about the power of her individual brand. The piece addressed just how much is at stake – from a sponsor and financial standpoint – in her quest to compete in her fourth Olympic games, in the wake of a rash of recent injuries. (Since this blog was first filed, Vonn has announced she will not be able to compete in the games, due to the injuries. But expect to still probably see her somewhere in the NBC studios during the games or on any number of commercials!)

Interestingly enough, as the article reminds us, Vonn’s “significant other” is none other than golfer Tiger Woods, who may well be the poster child in the modern day age for just how quickly an individual brand can deteriorate, if a scandal emerges.

So as I was getting my fill of college football bowl games this past week, I was struck once again by one particular individual who is a great reminder of the fact that there really is no substitute for authenticity and good character, when it comes to building a personal brand.

A.J. McCarron Photo | Matthew Tosh

A.J. McCarron
Photo | Matthew Tosh

Consider the case of star University of Alabama Quarterback A.J. McCarron. Despite his having led his teams to two national championships in his four seasons of college football, many of the pro scouts have cast some doubts on his ability to become a successful NFL quarterback. Some question his arm strength and his quickness – key attributes for the position at the professional level – but one thing nobody questions is his character.

Two incredibly moving stories that appeared on ESPN over the past year will give you an idea of the character that the young man has demonstrated, while carrying the responsibility – and to some extent, burden – of “building a personal brand” under the bright lights of the national stage, as the star quarterback of one of America’s most storied college football programs.

Check out both pieces if you have a few minutes to spare…

First, the story of A.J. … and A.J.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZF9wadtW290

 

… and second, the story of A.J. and a special young Crimson Tide fan named Starla.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZxSvrcUx5xg

A.J. McCarron may or may not go on to become a great NFL quarterback – that is left to be seen. I’ll be rooting for him and I think many people will be too.

But either way, he is a great reminder that, in so many aspects of life, character counts – and that authenticity and character are two qualities that are integral to the success of building and protecting a strong personal brand.

Like this post? Sign up for our Daily Update here.
Steve Simon

About Steve Simon

Steve Simon is vice president of Van Eperen & Company, a Rockville-based strategic communications and public relations firm. A longtime Montgomery County political observer, he has been in the media and public relations field locally for nearly 30 years. In addition to serving as an independent public relations consultant, he has held previous posts as the public information director for Montgomery County Public Schools, as director of communications for Montgomery College, and as a public information officer for Montgomery County, under three different county executive’s administrations. Earlier in his career, he was managing editor of The Chronicle Express newspapers, a former community newspaper chain in Montgomery County. He is the former host of several Montgomery County cable television shows, including Capital View Annapolis for County Cable Montgomery and Campus Conversations for Montgomery College Television.

Comments

| No comments yet.



Engage us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter