At the Executive Women in Agriculture Conference, Karen McCullough shares the importance of controlling your brand.
The farm’s brand and your brand are a big deal. At the Executive Women in Agriculture (EWA) Conference in Chicago, keynote speaker Karen McCulllough said branding is hot right now because of social media and the web, plus it doesn’t cost anything.
McCullough asked attendees what people see when they look at you or your farm. "Branding is about showing who you are and being different," she said. "It’s the unique and exclusive position that you occupy in the minds of others. What do others think of you?"
The quicker you establish your brand, the quicker the customer/decision-maker is going to connect with you and your products, McCullough said, explaining that people buy products and services, but they attach themselves to other people. According to McCullough a successful personal brand: increases your visibility and presence, differentiate you from the pack, increases your self-confidence, boosts your revenue and creates a clear focus for your career.
"You have to decide what you’re selling, who you are, who is working for you and who your customers are," McCullough said. "What’s your secret talent or secret sauce?"
Once you know this, she said have to be visible and create and experience when people buy your products or meet with you. "When you open up and share a little bit about who you are, it makes a big impression," she said. "People remember an experience. Connections are made by a memory and sharing stories."
McCullough noted that you only have 30 seconds to a minute to establish your brand when you first meet someone. "You have to tell your story so people want to do business with you and you have to have a strategy," she said. "Your story has to be right and tight; right and tight is better than big and loose."
Attendees were asked to write down three things most people don’t know about their business or themselves. "Now, when you are talking about yourself or your business, weave those three words in," she advised. "When you do this, people will begin to associate those words with who you are. You have to tell people what you want them to see in you. What’s sticky about you? It’s all about trying to connect."