I was just reading a blog post by Paul Dunay in which he waxes on about Dan Schawbel’s new book Me 2.0 Paul recommends it to anyone who is looking to build a personal brand.
I think that the onset of social media and social networks has allowed people to certainly increase their levels of exposure and their personal brand awareness, but it only works if others care to notice or pay attention to you. In other words-Your personal brand needs other people. That’s not a “me” issue, that’s a “we” issue.
I think my personal brand would grow and does grow more when I give more, share more, and basically act in a selfless manner towards others. I feel better about myself. Again though, even my attitude about my “personal brand” doesn’t fly unless there are others present. Others need to be there. Wherever there might actually be at that moment. Could be Twitter, Linkedin, Facebook, my Blog, a Seesmic or You Tube video, doesn’t matter.
Rather than doing things that made me look good and position me better. I feel better about myself when I’m able to give of myself instead of giving to myself.
In fact did you know that Altruistic acts can improve your quality of life in several ways, and are absolutely worth the effort? Here’s another great question for you: What makes Chris Brogan more happy? and what does he do better than anyone else? He gives, he shares and provides for his readers and followers- tips, pointers, guides, e-books, links and resources that can make them better at what they do. He doesn’t sell it. He gives it away, every day!
And why is Chris in the position he is in today? Is it because he took from others, because he was more concerned about his personal brand? Because he’s makin’ bank on others? No. Actually Chris is, where he is, because of what he shares and because of the people that it has affected, and has impacted. Chris will be the first to tell you that without the people that read his blog or follow his tweets or watch his vids, he’s just another hack. Actually he might tell you that anyways.
But my point is this, if you pay it forward. Or if you think of others more than yourself that that can have just as much of an impact on your personal brand as it would be if you solely concentrated on your personal brand.
I like what Dan is doing, don’t get me wrong. He has picked a niche and has cornered the market on personal brands; and right now social media, in all of its wonderous technicolor glory, can do amazing things for you and your personal brand. I’m merely saying that you might also want to think about the why, the how and most importantly, “the We”.
Also, to add to your point which is how the me (as an individual) benefits from the we by focusing on the we, it works the same way for organizations. Organizations that focus on their members and their needs, thoughts and feelings are healthy and thriving while organizations that have turned inward for the benefit of a few end up crumbling sooner or later. I’m worried about the high level of narcissism coming along with the concept of personal branding (we are already living in a very narcissist society according to sociologist). Altruism always pays off in the long run even if one could get away with more in the short run. Indeed the most brilliant mind in history never really cared about their personal brand…they were doing what they were doing because they believed in a caused that changed something for the better and they were good at it.
Translated to the world of brands and SM, I think it works the same way and personal branding can be dangerous if there’s too much of it. Having a SM guru is good and the impact of this key individual can be real. But it’s the power of the many that really holds the key. At the bottom of every brand, there’s a bond between people, between an organization and it’s market..to better serve it.
Good post reflection here. We need to strike the perfect balance between self-promotion and giving value to other people. We can’t make money or succeed in life without the help/support of other people, but, at the same time, we need to let people know about our achievements and what we’re good at.
Agree Dan, I think some get caught up in an inflated sense of self worth and importance courtesy of link juice. It may be what has aided in the rise of social media experts. Thanks for adding your voice to the topic.
@ecairn I love this line, “At the bottom of every brand, there’s a bond between people, between an organization and it’s market..to better serve it.”
Mr Meyer: I enjoyed reading your “We 2.0 is Better than Me 2.0” blog post and its accompanying responses. I’m especially impressed that Dan Schawbel responded back to your post the same day.
I agree with your assessment that an altruistic philosophy and approach is far more fulfilling and the right way to lead one’s life. Yesterday, I invested significant time in assisting two close friends in their individual job searches after after recently being layed off. In that sense, I’d like to think I’m doing my part to “pay it forward.”
A careful and responsible balance is required in implementing the power of social media because of its ability to influence countless numbers. With this realization in place, it is my hope that the individuals or Me 2.0’s of the world will act for the benefit of the We 2.0s.
It is admirable that you acknowledge Mr. Schawbel’s Me 2.0 book valuable content in personal branding. I began reading his book this weekend and believe that I and many others who are trying to “reinvent” themselves through the power of social media will benefit tremendously. I’m a 43 year old marketing professional who’s fortunately still gamefully employed (knock on wood), and knows that my demographic would benefit tremendously from studying Mr. Schawbel’s book.
In closing, I think it’s only fair to point out that Mr. Schawbel just like Mr. Brogan provides free content for the benefit of others. Schawbel’s eBook on creating a blog to build one’s personal brand is incredibly helpful in teaching the important details/considerations in creating a successful blog. I’ve been studying it side-by-side with Me 2.0 to ensure I’m not missing a single, important detail.
My sincere thanks for your thought-provoking post,
I agree reciprocity is key in this social networking age, if people pay attention to your brand, you should definitely return the favor. Very well written.
@ Tony, thanks for the heartfelt note on the post and I agree, Dan is providing an invaluable tool to those who need to work on their “brand” and I also agree that he does get it in regards to the altruistic nature of what social media is about. or should be about, and you know what? those that do get that, are the winners in the end.
Pingback: Fear and Loathing in Personal Brand Land » The Buzz Bin
Pingback: It depends but there Is No Social Media Kit, anyway « Fredzimny’s CCCCC Blog
Pingback: In The News…
Thanks Mark and Tony for sharing your thoughts which I reflected upon in the context of the organisation, although we meant slightly differently for We 2.0.
I guess we’ve been taught to be nice to others since young and it’s a good chance for us to do that in a humanised 2.0 world. It’s much more rewarding when we help in the absence of reciprocity, although it does generally come
A weirdo like me don’t really care if people notice me, I just hope that I can make friends with like-minded, hardworking people with interesting ideas and opinions
And if you notice the number of “I” I’ve used in this comment, it’s just Me 2.0, and do you think many Me 2.0 makes up We 2.0?