What is Executive Branding?

What is Executive Branding?
Executive Branding is when an executive uses marketing 2.0 techniques to showcase their professional strengths as a way to attract the best career opportunities. This is also known as, “reputation management.” Every savvy executive knows their reputation as a proven leader directly impacts their earning potential. Which means, the more visibility or “buzz” an executive can create around their professional success, the better. Unfortunately, while many hard-working C-suite members have been busy running things, social media landed on the scene and created a new “normal” when it comes to reputation management.

What Is Executive Branding?

Fact: No social media is bad executive branding! A common statement we hear from executives is, "Social media doesn’t apply to me." Well, in a time when all (yes ALL) the CEOs of the Fortune 500 are on LinkedIn and leveraging social media for their own Executive Branding efforts, we challenge those naysayers to tell us what they know others don’t. The simple fact is opting to not use social media as part of your Executive Branding strategy screams one or more of the following messages:
  • I’m not technology-savvy enough to use social media.
  • I think I’m smarter than the rest of the world.
  • I have something to hide.
In a day and age where admiration and respect for the C-suite is at an all-time low, using social media to control your Executive Brand messaging isn’t optional. Engage or suffer the consequences! Plus, executive search firms filter candidates with it. Instead of letting the world know there is an open position in the C-suite, companies hire executive search firms and contract recruiters who proactively research and contact potential fits for the role. These folks use social media to find executives who are currently seen as the “movers and shakers” of their industry. That’s because they use the information they locate online as a filter for who to contact confidentially. If you haven’t optimized your social media presence, there is a good chance you won’t be on their list! The reality is, when it comes to you being contacted directly by companies for the best positions in their C-suite, the answer is Executive Branding.

How Does it Work?

With Executive Branding, companies leverage the stickiness of content marketing and reach of social media to circulate powerful professional messaging. In short, it gives executives the ability to attract the ideal opportunity - like a moth to a flame. Finding the right career move doesn’t have to feel like searching for a needle in a haystack. Instead, you can use an Executive Branding campaign to get the best companies knocking on your door, excited and ready to offer you the job.

Why Should Executives Start Using it Now?

The best part about investing in Executive Branding is it has both short-term and long-term benefits. That’s because each Executive Branding campaign results a set of digital assets that grow in popularity over time in search engines like Google and Bing. The earlier and more frequently executives engage in Executive Branding best practices, the sooner they find themselves fielding headhunter phone calls, and the calls will increase over time too!

Why Aren’t More Executives Using Executive Branding?

In my experience, there are three reasons why most executives aren’t using Executive Branding yet:
  1. They don’t understand how to create an effective Executive Branding campaign.
  2. They think it will require too much work to get all the materials together and looking sharp.
  3. They think it costs a lot of money.
Well, not only are Executive Branding campaigns easy to create, they are extremely affordable too. For less than the cost of a week’s salary, an Executive Branding campaign can be started and promoted.

Executive branding image from Shutterstock

Man on laptop enjoys summer while working full time

There you are: sitting on the beach, covered in sunscreen, reading your favorite book, drinking your favorite drink under the cool shade of an umbrella. Life doesn't get any better than this. Suddenly, a door slams, a phone rings, a printer turns on. You jolt back into consciousness. You're at work, sitting in your cubicle, without even a hint of sunshine streaming in from outside.

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