We live in a state of brand hyper-awareness where people rush to buy the latest designer fashion and line up outside Apple stores to buy the latest tech gadgets.
We also judge people on physical appearances well before anything else – research from Princeton University places the time it takes to form an impression of a stranger at just a tenth of a second! It raises an interesting question: Do individuals have brands? That is, a personal brand that reflects who they are, what they believe, and how others perceive them? And more importantly, is it possible your self-created brand has been holding you back all these years? The answer to both is a resounding ‘yes’, according to Emily Kucukalic, MD of Brand New You, an agency that applies traditional marketing concepts to personal branding. From the initial ‘brand audit’ through to the creation of ‘brand values’ and a ‘marketing plan’, Kucukalic and her team work with clients to create a ‘brand you’.
Is this a sorry reflection on the shallow world of today, where shiny surfaces matter more than substance, or is there more to it? Human Capital sat down with Kucukalic for a one-on-one chat.
HC: How is Brand New You different to image consultants or life coaches and who are your clients?
Emily Kucukalic: We’re different to image consultants or presentation trainers or coaches because we come at it from a pure marketing background. We’ve adapted what marketing agencies or a corporate would do with their brand, to make it brand you.
We work with two types of clients. Firstly, people who come to us of their own volition – usually they’re at a crossroads, they want to go for a new job, or take an important step in their personal life.
Alternatively, a corporate will send a high performer to us because they recognise that person is ready for the next level and they want to start ramping up their capabilities.