A popular show on Netfix right now is Beckham. No first name needed. Particularly at the height of his fame, David Beckham became a household name and brand. Now, younger generations might be more attuned to Victoria or Brooklyn – the legacy lives on.
The show is very much an expose into the rise of David Beckham’s career as a football player and the growth of his megawatt brand. To me it was fascinating to see the development of the personality and celebrity brand, plus the ups and downs of the “hero’s” journey.
Like Beckham, leading sports stars, entertainers, film stars and other identities have in most cases spent years honing their skills and developing a strong personal brand persona. They also understand the enormous power of the media to help showcase their personal brand to help build their fame and their fortune.
As do many business leaders who recognise the power of personal branding as an aid to building a strong business.
Lets’ look at what we can learn from David Beckam’s journey to establishing a successful personal brand and six principles you can apply to your own personal brand growth.
1. Beckham became an expert at football. It took many years of work, practice and discipline from a very young age to know and understand what it takes to get good. He was also very passionate and driven to succeed at what he clearly loved.
Are you very good at what you do? Do you walk your talk? Are you believable? Do you have the history or skills to back up your claims? Are you a leader in your field?
2. Persistence paid for Beckham. He played for many years with his first team Manchester United F.C, had tremendous support, demonstrated amazing talent, and navigated as we all often do, the varying personalities of team members, players and coaches.
His talent, looks and as luck would have it drove him to his first brand endorsement and the beginning of the rise of the Beckham Brand. He recognized that this was an opportunity to be a business – a personal brand business and build on his image as football player.
Do you use the media to spread the word about what you do? The media is such a powerful tool and when used well can really help profile you and your brand. Two ways you can use the media to profile your business and brand is through a media publicity campaign or writing articles for online and print magazines. They can help position you as the expert and authority in your area – the first person people contact when it comes to that subject.
3. It wasn’t always easy. He was totally focused on playing well, with the main goal of a winning outcome for the team and to uplift the fans – it’s his true passion. But at times the fans didn’t agree with his playing tactics, he faced differences with coaches and stepping apart as the “star” and the media circus that ensued caused friction.
He had to change direction, yet still pursue his passion of being a great football player, and by this stage a family man. Plus please the fans and the brands.
Will your information, product or service be of benefit or help people in any way? What does it mean to others? Will it have an impact on your customers or general public? Are you passionate about what you do?
4. Beckham persisted with different football clubs, stood up to the critics and continued with major brand endorsements. He became a worldwide celebrity recognised everywhere he went and made millions of dollars in the process. He really has the credentials to say he is the best at what he does.
Do other people back up your claims? Do you have testimonials or awards or the $$ to say you are successful at what you do? In articles or media releases can you include quotes from others endorsing what you do? Will they say great things about you?
5. Beckham has taken his years of expertise, his networks and media exposure to build on his brand. He continues to follow his love of football and to build on the Beckham Brand business with numerous endorsements and brand partnerships.
Are you truly an expert? Have you invested in gaining knowledge about your industry, your customers and the competition? Do you have articles on your website on your subject, special reports or written a book that demonstrates your expertise? Have you tapped into your network of influencers?
6. David Beckham has built a team of experts around him, manager, agent, stylists and others to help grow the brand. He would have realised many years ago, you can’t do it all on your own and along the way has tapped into other people’s areas of expertise.
Are you ready to take your personal brand that bit further? Remember there is help out there – whether it’s a ghost writer to help you with your book, a publicist or an image consultant. Identify what it is you might need to help grow your personal brand.
Sue Currie is a speaker and the author of IMPRESSario, Present and Promote the Star Within You. She is passionate about helping business executives and entrepreneurial professionals elevate their personal brand, image and professional presence. Sue’s suite of image management services delivered through workshops, consulting, coaching and keynote presentations provides a multi-faceted approach to gain high transformation for her clients.
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