If you take the time to look around you; what do you think you think you will see? What will you hear? Perhaps it’s people on their cell phones talking about how the Bachelorette Des is with Chris and not Brooks? Will you see people sitting at Starbucks with their ears filled with buds and their ipods enjoying their ‘i-life’? Even better yet is it the oh so chic ladies walking by with the coveted Christian Louboutin’s just in time for fall? Or last for you guys out there is it the latest on A-Rod?
Regardless of what you do and don’t see that can make all the difference? Sure people like sporting their latest fashions to be perceived as hip or cool. Sure some need to have you believe they are more successful because they drive this car or that; even though they may live in an empty apartment and live on Top Ramen. Sure; you too may be a sucker for it all. A sucker who falls into the trap of paying money to a company for something only to then be branded by it. Let’s face it folks: does anyone really care that your purse is Prada? Does anyone care that you drive you drive a 1967 Shelby Mustang GT500 or McLaren F1? Of course not! (Regardless of how utterly awesome they are!)
This leads me to ask: what is branding you? And furthermore why?
Lately the trend in and out of business is the push for branding, branding; and yes more branding. ‘You need to brand yourself’ the business experts say. ‘You need to have more products’ others will say because of course if you are not out there just pushing this product or that face then you are just forgotten. It’s tiring isn’t it? Of course it is because you can’t not keep up and be relevant. Will it end or is this just what society is? If you check out the Bible it’s pretty clear where we are. ‘1But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. 2For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good,…’ (2TIm 3:2)
Now don’t get me wrong; business is great! I’m a capitalist and love America! This isn’t as much about doing business as is it where the focus is. Are you one that is only interesting in the branding of yourself in terms of ‘you’ or are you more interested in the brand of your character? You see there is quite a difference and understanding that may change your perception of a few things. The brand of your character will outlast and outshine anything else and if you are not aware or paying attention to your ‘brand’ in that way you may miss the mark. No one will remember that you wore last year’s Prada’s or the car you drove 5 years ago. They will remember; however, your character.
Take for example A-Rod. I remember when he played for Seattle and just how awesome he was! I remember when he came to the Texas Rangers and the incredible salary he was paid. Congrats right! While you may not like what he was paid that is irrelevant. The perception was that he was worth it. His brand was amazing! I love stories of haters where they just don’t agree with someone being paid yet if it that person were offered that salary I’m sure it would be quite a different story. Just saying.
Today; however, A-Rod’s has quite another story. What is his brand? How would you describe it? Tainted? Corrupt? Faulty? All of the above? It isn’t about judgment of him as we do still live in a society where innocent until proven guilty.
The point here is that he has branded himself. He was branded as one of the best and most certainly was and is. He was the youngest player ever to hit 500 home runs and surpassed Sami Sosa records too. He is gifted without a doubt. The question though what now has branded him? What is it about his brand that you are going to remember?
It’s no different than any of us. It’s so easy to get caught up in all the rage of technology and think it’s needed in order to be current. It’s easy to fall into the fashion traps and waste money on things of no value only to be branded by a label.
What isn’t so easy though is to reflect on it the brand of your character. Your brand of integrity, reputation; and poise. Perhaps if more people thought about what they truly are pushing instead of themselves for personal gain we wouldn’t be the billboards that we are allowing ourselves to be and sold for the lowest cost.