From the chapter 7 from the book "If You Don't Contribute, don't matter., I've already dealt with three parts, The 7.1 Personal Branding to find work, The 7.2 next to Alejandra Bara, Personal Branding to improve at work and the 7.3 with Nancy Vazquez Personal Branding to undertake.
Let's go to the 4th part, The 7.4, dedicated to Personal Branding to manage fame, for which I have one of the people who forged Soymimarca, Alexia Herms, personal and corporate brand expert, in digital marketing, and usual television and radio tertuliana to analyze the digital behavior of celebrities.
If you're short on time, I'll leave you this one-minute summary:
- Who is Alxia Herms?
- Controlling the Personal Brand or leaving it adrift?
- Authenticity, personal brand or character brand?
- Is it easy for a "celebrity" to manage their communities?
- The branding staff to manage the present fame, helps the future?
- How to manage peak moments and valley moments?
- What about the ostrich CEO?
- Influencers or micro-influencers?
- Brands want to work with influencers who are able to generate business
- Where to see Alxia Herms in action
Who is Alxia Herms?
About Allxia, I have to tell you she's an expert in digital communication, level 1, but that in his first professional steps he was part of Soymimarca no less than five years, and who therefore knows, And a lot, personal brand.
Together we have fought battles with very interesting people. I remember one day, at the agency, I got a call from a TV channel, I think I remember it was the Spanish Tele 5. They wanted to interview me about the digital and personal reputation of the protagonists of a very famous gossip program, there is still, Called “Saved”. I told them., who felt it, that I couldn't help them (in my life I had seen the show), but that Alxia Herms, Soymimarca consultant, yes I could do it. And Alxia gladly accepted, thoroughly studied the interview and overcate it with a note.
Since then, Alexia has combined her professional marketing activity with appearances on various television and radio programs that analyze the lives of celebrities. That's why I think it's the right profile to deal with a topic that might one day affect you: how do you understand personal branding to manage fame? Here we go...
Controlling the Personal Brand or leaving it adrift?
Guillem: Allxia, I remember when we opened Soymimarca, in that distant 2010. The word “fame”, in the context of the personal brand, did not refer to “celebrity” but to the label they put us in different environments. You know, I in my house have a reputation for “clumsy” at school I had it as a hooligan and I think in the profession I have for something off-center. But if we choose the meaning of “fame” such as an individual's notoriety index, it's about something serious, do you think it should be managed or is it better to leave it adrift?
Alexia: Depends on. Talking more about your personal environment, you have to be yourself, Authentic. If we talk about the world of people with public image, who live on it, who need collaborations with brands, the management of that fame is IMPRESCINDIBLE.
Today, when a big brand plans to look for a public figure to represent it, there is a transaction of values, from brand to celebrity and celebrity to brand. There must be lace, that's why analyzing that fame is key, because when brands do the reflection of who and why, we look at external image attributes, digital reputation, content on social media, and the associated digital press. So, everything builds that fame, and from here the brands we decide who they do or don't with, and how much we're willing to pay for that securities transaction, notoriety and sales.
Guillem: In the end it's a harmonic set.
Allxia: It is a very complex cocktail with lots of variables, some open by the digital environment. It may not seem like it., but there's a very deep reflection, whether for big celebrities or ambassadors like influencers or opinion leaders who aren't as "macro", are more local. There's an analysis of his fame, what they've done, his past, what they like or don't like.
We want to prevent someone from doing something that harms the brand and that is why it is essential to investigate thoroughly.
Authenticity, personal brand or character brand?
Guillem: I worked for 5 years at an advertising agency with a boss named José María Rubio. Maybe the name won't tell you anything., but if I tell you it's the Mr. Barragán, one of the biggest comedians on the Spanish scene, it probably sounds like something to you. We always argue about person and character, it's inevitable. We know cases of people who have created a character that has outperformed them. do you think someone famous should retain their personal essence or should they be true to the character they have created?
Allxia: We all have to be true to our essence. When we go to the advertising world, I see that if you have to look after the character created, because that's what people are buying. I also think there must be some truth in that character, because if management isn't very complex. But let's not forget that brands "buy" a successful product: the personal brand and visibility of someone you know. I mean, created, real dog, there's consistency.
In my career, sometimes I've hired a product born from a personal brand, and when it comes to meeting her there has been a huge dissociation with what she projects on her social networks. That's when the concept of authenticity is relevant, when you realize you've bought something by associating it with attributes that don't exist.
When we want to make a collaboration with someone we always try to meet the person - it's not always easy, before the Covid it was very complex- and check that what you project and what is is aligned. And we asked about the level of brand to which they're going to represent. If they say yes and it's not, the problems between brand and influencer begin, since there is no match.
Guillem: At the end, ethics intervenes in the process.
Allxia: That's right. I've found everything, that would give for a podcast just anecdotes of those mismatches. It would be a good class for universities: "How to negotiate with influencers and casuistics that you can find". The ethical word here is key, especially when it's scarce.
Is it easy for a "celebrity" to manage their communities?
Guillem: There's a topic a lot of people wonder about managing the PRSS of celebrities. At first, overwhelmed by having communities of hundreds of thousands or millions of people, many turned to the community manager, but there he missed that fantasy of the fan of direct contact, of the possibility of being able to interact with the famous person.
We saw the case of a government president who when he signed his tweets with the acronym MR (we won't say names) meant I had created it personally. I, in the book “If you don't contribute, you don't matter” I explain that celebrities like CR7 or Messi require an agency to manage their accounts, but with the possibility of intervening personally when they see fit. do you think there's a perfect system for celebrities to properly manage their communities?
Allxia: Complex question. The strategy must be ahead, but always at the service of truth, authenticity. I have acquaintances who manage the networks of people with public image, And it's complex, because one thing is the strategy and the pillars of content associated with values and then there is spontaneity, the naturalness of posting what they want because they feel it in their soul. In the end, they're people.
So they don't look like a product, this naturalness helps to humanize. It's the magic of letting people express themselves. They need control, certain filters from the agency and the content creator but also that touch of truth. Sometimes I see Instagram profiles that are perfect, you didn't just believe them., nobody has a perfect life. That apparent aspirationality we liked at first, but now we appreciate the truth. Well-managed spontaneity makes all the sense.
Guillem: And a bad night is had by anyone (thanks for the phrase, Little One of the Eternal Causeway).
Allxia: Yes, we know warm of someone who has created a tweet that has gone viral, Repents, erases it, but on the net everything is left. That's part of managing the public image of a celebrity you're going to meet at certain times.
The branding staff to manage the present fame, helps the future?
Guillem: I remember once we had it in our hands to manage the personal brand of an NBA basketball player with an immense community. Our focus of work was not communication, but how he could take advantage of his future fame by creating a foundation, a product or a service do you think that the short term is eaten in the long run also in celebrity brand management?
Allxia: If you ever ask me that it does 5 or more years, after the boom networks, I'd tell you they were looking for short-term monetization. Today, with my experience, I see that a more qualitative selection of collaborations is being made in the case of celebrities: don't mix brands that can compete, work for brands in different sectors, as a sport, Power, luxury fashion, mainstream fashion.
On celebrities, more professionalized everything and more contemplation of the medium-long term. However, between influencers, it seems that everything is worth it and any opportunity is good to monetize. There has been a "cleaning" of influencers and there have been those who have been consistent, what they communicate from authenticity.
Celebrities see a stronger, longer-term strategic line that is not reflected in influencers.
Guillem: I remember a long time ago the case of a famous cook who in 5 years worked for three identical brands in terms of business segment.
Allxia: Consumer knows more, and no longer forgives those behaviors. And the managers behind celebrities already think about annual collaborations to avoid these things. In short they are asking for more bond, increased commitment to the brand, which is positive. The market is maturing.
How to manage peak moments and valley moments?
Guillem: Call Momentum to that idea of taking advantage of the timing of fame. There are ephemeral celebrities, like athletes, and others long-term, as actresses, Singers, Writers. But don't you think even a long-term celebrity should take advantage of the momentum to create something big, Altruistic, and keep him in the limelight for a long time?
Allxia: No doubt. I believe in strategy, but also in the thoughtful opportunism. When you're in a good time, often you don't think about what might come, but that's the time to draw up the plan for the future: Now I'm here, but where do I want to be in 10 Years? how do I want to build and manage the legacy of what I've been doing?
For me that reflection is necessary in someone with a public image. Define travel companions. The strategy between brand and celebrity is a living thing. What makes sense one day may stop having it another day and you value other people, Brands, Collaborations.
For example, there are influencers who have been mothers, and after motherhood they have refocused their channels and communication. It makes all the sense, as they reach other audiences with other needs, Interests. We must reflect on the present to plan for the future and capitalize on the high moments.
Guillem: There are also cases of a celebrity who has gone through a disease and turned to creating a foundation, As Josep Carreras leukemia.
Allxia: Exactly, whether it's helping in other people's problems or supporting a startup. With visibility, with personal or knowledgeable experience.
What about the ostrich CEO?
Guillem: The big CEOs continue with the ostrich technique, without giving the face digitally speaking. And there are social selling studios that link a higher online presence of a CEO with higher sales and greater conversion. There are cases of fame and acquaintances, like Branson's, Bill Gates, o Elon Musk. Don't you think the ostrich CEO misses a unique opportunity to humanize the brand that represents? do you think it's just a generational issue or also an attitude?
Allxia: Depends on. There are CEOs and CEOs. Branson or Jeff Bezos have a very powerful personal brand that can be used as an asset for the corporate brand. But there are other CEOs that better stay behind the stage, in the background. Maybe they don't have the right charisma., or there's not a good story behind it, or those skills are lacking Soft communication.
It's not a good or bad CEO, maybe it's brilliant doors inside, but his public image is not adequate enough to lead him to be a brand asset. So, within the framework of large corporations, the answer to your question is: Depends on. You simply have to wonder whether or not the CEO's visibility. And I think both paths are valid. At the end, companies are people, but giving visibility to the CEO figure depends on whether or not it's suitable for the brand.
I recognize that working in a company with a visible CEO I feel like, because I see a great leader behind it and that's inspiring to capture talent. And that doesn't mean there aren't any other "sexy" companies to work with whose CEO is more in the background.
Guillem: I think in the near future, many companies are going to demand that the CEO be a great communicator.
Allxia: Yes, it's a competition that's going to be incorporated into leadership and vision. The CEO should inspire his team. Sometimes there are middle managers who hold this natural leadership, but if the ship's captain is a great communicator, that will propel the rest of the team and create pride of belonging.
Influencers or micro-influencers?
Guillem: I remember we were working years ago, the business model of a YouTube super influencer., with a community greater than 12 millions of people. That's fame.. It was a nice experience.
There's a lot of debate going on these days about those new digital influencers emerging from places like YouTube, Instagram, TikTok… as if the soufflé was fraying. It seems that brands prefer to bet on more profiles “Normal”, those who have become known as “micro-influencers”, people who exert influence as good curators or content creators, and with communities of maximum 10.000 People. Do you think big influencers haven't been able to manage their fame or have followers simply tired of seeing so much covert publicity?
Allxia: I believe that the soufflé it's not fraying, but the figure of the influencer is evolving. A few days ago I was invited to a debate at ClubHouse on this subject. Just as the CEO must improve his public communication, influencers must be great communicators, because brands are asking for the figure of the Streamer, able to broadcast in real time successfully...
New influencers are born that offer brands new ways to reach their audiences. On the subject of micro, I'll tell you that brands still need macro-influencers, Celebrities... as great amplifiers for our audiences.
It is true that we have incorporated micro-influencers. They provide emotional connection, it's like a friend told you, there is greater capillary in the area of very different audiences. A brand's influencer plan already includes micro-influencers as essential, although you still have the big ones.
As I was saying, there has been "cleaning" and there have been those who have worked their personal brand well and give consistency. An influencer who talks about us and within a few minutes talks about the competition is no longer useful to us, doesn't give any confidence.
I, Summarizing, I'd tell you that the soufflé it's more bloated than ever, even in prices. The tiktokers they're very expensive. Now the brands are in Twitch, and it's hard to find good twitchers, good streamers. I think it's a nice time., with the podcast streaming networks are reinventing themselves, and consequently the world of influencer marketing.
Brands want to work with influencers who are able to generate business
Allxia: There is a very important KPI that a few years ago was not measured, which is the sale. Brands want to work with influencers who are able to generate business. It's a mystery who sells and who doesn't. It's about working with these influencers to find out who has that ability.
There is life beyond impressions, views, And it's the sales. And here we don't care what the influencer has: he sells it does it with 1 million, 30.000 Or 5.000 Followers. This world has become democratized; selling is a key indicator for brands.
When we invest money in someone we want to see a return, an Influencer Return of Investment. Before we paid and the process was over and now we looked to get to the indicators and analyze how to get there better, the demands of brands are different, more focused and data-focused, because we now have more tools to get it.
Where to see Alxia Herms in action
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