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You Are a Brand!: How Smart People Brand Themselves for Business Success Paperback – May 13, 2010
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"There's an old proverb that says 'You eat life or life eats you.' Catherine Kaputa and her brilliant ideas on self-branding show you how to be the diner and not the entree." --Jay Conrad Levinson, father of guerrilla marketing; author, Guerrilla Marketing book series
"Self-branding is not optional in today's insecure world of commerce. You Are a Brand! is an excellent and welcome addition to the all-too-small library on the subject." -- Tom Peters, author of The Brand You 50 and bestseller In Search of Excellence
"Each individual is an important contributor to the success of his or her corporation. This insightful book shows you how to fully realize your potential and give yourself and your company maximum benefit." -- Bill Roedy, Chairman and CEO, MTV Networks
"Personal branding becomes an absolute essential for professional career development. In You Are a Brand!, Catherine Kaputa gives us a no-nonsense kit for survival in the global labor market." -- Gregory L. Miller, Chief Economist, SunTrust Banks, Inc.
If you're seeking new ways to get ahead in a very competitive business world, this book can teach you how to brand yourself as a success. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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It should be noted that the author already assumes you have some marketable skills. Without it, you don't have anything to build a brand around. "If you don't stand for something relevant to the marketplace, you have no value", states the author.
Influencing how others perceive you and your ideas starts with a building a brand. One must brainstorm one's strengths and how one's strengths align with the market (or employer) values. Then one should focus on one's strengths and highlight its relevance in the marketplace in a emotionally connecting way.
Branding is executed primarily through visual (good attire, personal appearance, body language) and verbal (communication through effective rhetoric and tone). The book also highlights the paramount importance of gettting noticed by the right people. If you are not invited to the right meetings, author notes, you are dead in the water (of real career progression).
Overall, I felt this book contained as much good career advice as any I have read. I highly recommend it.
The book contains a number of interesting insights, but personally, I found the "Brainstormers" to be the most useful for my own development. Throughout the book you are confronted with questions which you need to (and should) answer and fill in. While a little daunting at first, these have proven to be extremely helpful. I found myself going back, adjusting, and tweaking my answers repeatedly as I learned new tips or simply stumbled across new ideas. Now, reviewing my own work, I realize how far I've come along in trying to define my own strengths, preferences and areas for improvement.
I would give this book 5 out of 5, if it wasn't for one weakness - at times I was left wanting for that 'key insight' as Katherine steered deep into business and marketing ideas without clearly tying them back to the concept of 'personal brand'. Otherwise, this is a great book, well worth your time and money. Just remember, the value of it will be proportional to how you approach it - branding is about action and taking control of your future.
The author also delves into the concept of packaging your brand. This goes way beyond the idea of `dress for success.' It details all the facets of self presentation that need to be considered as you build your self-brand...fascinating and actionable material.
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As the author points out, we've all got to think like branders in today's market place.Read more