Injecting Creativity into Your Personal Brand

 
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Welcome to the first ever episode of Creativity Killed the Cat! I’m excited to bring you a podcast unlike any other — one that engages with the audience to create living examples of how to use creativity in your marketing strategies. The overarching objective is to inspire smaller companies to be different in their marketing tactics on a regular basis to achieve growth.

This first episode focuses on your personal brand. It’s a good place to start for any employee or small business owner because your personal brand reflects your character and the character of the company you’re associated with.

You can listen to the episode and read the transcription below. You can also listen on Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, YouTube, or anywhere else you get your podcasts by searching “Creativity Killed the Cat”.

— Intro —  

What’s crackalackin all you beautiful people! Welcome to the Creativity Killed the Cat podcast. My name’s Andrew Chwalik and I’m going to be helping you develop creative marketing that won’t break the bank.

Before jumping into our episode, I’m going to share a fun fact since we’re all friends here. I once got lost in a cornfield and only made it out because I knew the sun rose in the east and set in the west.

Alright, on with the show!

— Marketing Chat —

This is the first ever episode of creativity killed the cat! Pretty exciting, I know. The story behind this podcast starts with my love of creativity. When I was a kid, art was my obsession — coming to a climax when I got first prize at the art fair in fifth grade for my plankton stealing a crabby patty sculpture.

Eventually, that creativity turned into me studying marketing as an undergrad student at Walsh University. I realized I could still create beautiful works of art, but now I could do it for companies. My desire the become a creative marketing wizard took me to Ireland where I continued my studies at Trinity College Dublin.

Now, returning home to the great state of Ohio with two very expensive pieces of paper, I wanted to figure out how I could turn all this knowledge and passion for marketing into something impactful. After visiting a few small businesses in the area, I realized they didn’t have the know-how or the finances to polish their marketing efforts.

That was the conception of this podcast!

I want to help small businesses and brands that don’t have the budget to hire some crazy expensive corporate marketing consultant. Creative marketing should be for everyone.

That’s where Creativity Killed the Cat podcast comes in. Every episode, I take one small business or brand and develop some creative marketing concepts that could be implemented as soon as they finish listening to this podcast. We’ll talk about each idea and what it would potentially look like as an actual marketing initiative.

The best part about all of this is that these ideas can be tweaked and used by a variety of business or brands. So if you need a little creativity injected into your marketing, you’ve hit the jackpot. (money sound)

Now that you know how Creativity Killed the Cat came to fruition and why it exists, let’s get creative and start saving some cats!

— Personal Brand —  

The first business or brand that we’re going to look at is actually an individual’s personal brand. This person is a sales professional with over 25 years of sale experience so he knows what he’s talking about. This gentleman is looking for a new job opportunity within the industry and wanted to polish up his personal brand. Pretty smart move.

He wanted two things to go along with his personal brand. First, to create awareness of his sales expertise and second, to become an industry influencer. This project was pretty cool because I was able to sit down with this individual and have a mini-consulting session; I like to think we had some pretty cool ideas.

This individual knew that he needed to have a strong personal brand so he already had labels and thank you cards created with a specific color scheme that he wanted to use across his entire personal brand. We sat down and developed a new business card that he can use to tied his whole brand together. I took the theme from those thank you cards and labels and merged that onto his business card.

Once the business card was good to go, I recommend getting all of those printed at Vistaprint. Vistaprint is a website where you can get anything printed or branded and I’ve even used it myself — it’s quite affordable. You can get small or large amounts of whatever branded content that you want. It’s really sweet because you can upload any custom design and they’ll print it on almost anything you can imagine. If you want to get 500 business cards, it’s only going to cost you $15. Maybe you want some pens that you can handout and give around with your brand on them. Boom. Now, you can make that happen.

If you want to go hardcore, you can get a t-shirt with your face printed on it and throw them out to the crowd when you’re at a basketball game. Yeah, maybe don’t do that one yet.

The next thing I recommended was for him to create a blog and create that blog on Medium. Medium is a platform for bloggers and written content. Think of it as the Twitter for blogs. Actually, one of the co-founders of Twitter founded Medium. There’s a good comparison for you.

We ended up creating this blog about sales because that is what this individual knows all about. He wanted to tie his personal brand, as we mentioned, to his expertise in sales. I developed a cool, simple logo that went along with this sales blog because, in marketing, brand consistency is so important. Think about it, if you’re an individual with a personal brand and you give someone a business card — and you have one brand attached to that — then later they see your website has a totally different color scheme, you’re not talking about sales and now you’re talking about wrestling — the brand consistency thing doesn’t really line up and the viewer gets confused. You don’t want to confuse people. You are not a jigglypuff, come on now.

Sweet. We got the sales blog done. We have an awesome logo that goes with it. That blog is now included on the newly designed business card. Everything is rolling along quite nicely. However, then we came to an interesting situation of what the URL should be. There were two options, either have it as that individual’s last name or have it be the name of the blog. I’ll use myself as an example here — the URL for the blog could have been andrewchwalik.com or it could have been creativitykilledthecat.com. After sitting back and thinking about it for a while and reflecting on the two goals this individual has, I made my decision on why I think it should be this individuals name, like the andrewchwalik.com option. This is because this gentleman has the goal of becoming an industry influencer. When somebody goes to a site like with a URL like andrewchwalik.com, they’re going to instantly associate the name of the individual in the URL with the content that comes up after typing it in.

As soon as they type in this individuals name to the search bar, they are going to be right at this sales blog, instantly letting the reader know that this person is all about sales—further cementing the creator as an industry influencer.

I came up with another interesting idea when we were talking about networking and handing out the business card. My thought was to tape an individual Tylenol on the back of each business card. Now, bear with me. I’m not sure of the legalities of this idea so take that for what it’s worth, but it could have gone something like this:

The person with the business card walks up to another individual at a networking event and says, “Does your sales process give you headaches? I’ve got your answer.” Hand them the business card and they’re going to see the Tylenol taped on the back with the sales blog. First off, people are going to think it’s hilarious and they’re going to laugh. Also, they’re going to think, “wow, I really do get a headache from my sales process. I’m going to check this guy out.”

However, as I said, it might not be the ideal scenario to just hand out Tylenol to random people, but just a cool idea that could be tweaked.

The final piece of this individual’s personal brand was polishing up his LinkedIn profile.Thankfully, this guy knew how important it is to have a strong LinkedIn profile and he was already on the ball with all the content relative to his profile. For all of you out there, no matter if you’re working on your personal brand or if you’re going to stay in the job you have for your entire life, LinkedIn is so important so make sure your profile is good to go with all of the relevant/organized content that you need it to have.

The one thing this guy was missing was a creative LinkedIn header image. That is the image you see behind the profile once you click on someones to view. Since his blog was all about sales and he actually reviews sales books, my thought was to put all of his favorite sales books on one bookshelf all in a row. Then, place something relevant to yourself—so if you like baseball, just stick a baseball in there randomly. Then, photograph that individual shelf and make that image your header. This all ties together nicely because the blog that he writes is all about sales as well as those posts that he’ll be doing about reviewing sales books will be relevant. Going along with the first point that he was trying to achieve with his personal brand, which is creating awareness of his sales expertise, that folds the entire brand together by showing that he is an expert because he reads all these books. Plus, you can go check out the reviews on each one. Pretty dang sweet of you ask me.

— Personal Brand —  

Boom. That personal brand should now be poppin’! Your personal brand is so important, you need to give it a little TLC from time to time. I’m glad this was our first episode because it doesn’t matter who you are, you can always up your personal brand game.

— Closing —  

Well, that’s all folks. Thanks for joining me on the first ever episode of Creativity Killed the Cat! I hope you had as much fun as I did and were able to take away some creative marketing ideas that you can start using right now.

If you’re still stuck and need a little extra creative juice, head over to creativitykillscats.com to find some more content that will continue to get your creative gears turning. Plus, you can reach out and let me know if you want your business or brand as the theme for one of our future episodes.

Keep saving those cats. I’ll see you all on the next episode of Creativity Killed the Cat. In the meantime, try not to walk into any corn fields. I’m just saying.