When someone’s personal brand speaks to me, it has integrity, focus, is relevant to what I’m interested in and enhances my life in some way – usually educationally. To me, this is the core of creating a successful personal brand – focus and relevance to a specific target audience – big or small.
I could have listed many more ladies in this list, but I wanted to start with these three B2B superstars, because the beginning of the year is a perfect time to reflect on your personal brand. Gaining inspiration from other’s is an excellent place to start the journey of self-reflection.
Without further ado, the three ladies I admire are: Tiffani Bova, Wendy Hogan and Beth Comstock – two I know and one I don’t.
1. Tiffani Bova, Global Growth and Innovation Evangelist, Salesforce
I had the great pleasure of meeting Tiffani when I worked at Microsoft. As a Gartner VP and Distinguished Analyst, I hosted her on two trips to Singapore and was inspired by her intelligence, confidence, ability to listen, as well as how she articulated very complex subjects in a no-nonsense, common-sensical way. Common sense is definitely a quality I value.
That time spent with Tiffani helped me personally too – on a deep level. It helped me to believe in my own ideas and to this day, I value the time we had together. Alas, today she’s super busy with Salesforce, travelling the globe and continuing to inspire, but her personal brand remains a strategic focus.
When people tell me they don’t have time, I’m like: go and check out Tiffani Bova? If she can make the time, anyone can. And Tiffani is the voice behind her brand. She gets what it’s all about.
Owning your voice on digital is critical for any professional and Tiffani is an excellent example of a leader who understands it, embraces it, and owns it. I believe Tiffani makes the time because she knows how important it is if you want to understand the world the customer is living in today.
Participating with integrity and intelligence, is how you earn the right to influence your customers, where ever they are. That’s the fundamental switch that’s happened in the world of the customer.
If you are interested in sales, CX, the customer in the era of disruption, as well as women in sales or STEM, Tiffani is definitely a person you should be following. She shares great insight – her own and other industry leaders.
One other very important quality Tiffani brings to social leadership – engaging with others. She is tagged by a lot of people in posts, and Tiffani is always speaking back. It is amazing how many people miss this critical part of building a personal brand. To be successful, you must spend as much time talking with your audience, as you do pushing information out.
Here is Tiffani on Twitter @Tiffani_Bova
She launched a Podcast What’s Next! With Tiffani Bova this year, where she interviews great people and the content is definitely leading edge. I’m not a podcast fan, but I listen now.
And Tiffani is a regular contributor to industry publications. In fact, if you’re in sales or your confidence is confused by others as arrogance, please read her article Don’t Mistake Confidence for Ego, which appeared in Top Sales Magazine recently.
2. Wendy Hogan, CX and Marketing Strategy Director, Oracle
Wendy is also someone I know personally and a dear friend. We became connected about eight years ago, when Wendy found me on Google+ through a blog I published about my son. We had some back and forth, but never met up, and the next communication is a message from Wendy (still on G+) following another blog I published, because our boys were now in the same school.
A firm friendship was formed, but it is in the professional field where Wendy blows me away. Wendy has an enormous amount of knowledge across the customer experience space, especially as she comes at it from both a publisher and IT vendor background. Crossing that chasm is rare, so to speak to someone who is seeing it from both perspectives, has provided some great learnings for me.
I believe Wendy’s magic is the fact she gets it because she’s not a sales or marketing person, or even a journalist. Instead she’s a leader who has had to build teams, build digital products, attract audiences, make revenue, be profitable, and then change as the market requires it. She’s worked across social, digital, technology, content, etc… and Wendy is always on the pulse of what’s changing and why businesses need to reinvent themselves.
I also know how deeply Wendy thinks about things. She’s never quick to jump in with an opinion. She is extremely thoughtful and considered, and again, has a ton of common sense. I learn from Wendy every day, and when she shares something on LinkedIn, or elsewhere, I know it is going to be of great value to me. She never wastes my time.
Wendy also gives a lot back – a lot. It’s a huge part of her profile, because she fundamentally understands that personal branding is about giving to others (#GivingEconomy) – not big-noting yourself.
Whether it is co-founding #Ladybadassery with Joanna Bloor (I’m a proud #Ladybadass), her networking groups where she connects great people together, or how she helps event organizers build their event profile by her intelligent social engagement, Wendy is a powerful force on social media and someone I admire.
You can find Wendy on Twitter here @wendy_hogan.
And don’t forget to check out her blogs on LinkedIn Wendy Hogan.
Beth Comstock, Vice Chair at GE
I never met Beth Comstock, but friends who worked closely with Beth at GE told me she was a world-class person. That is good enough for me. I had already noticed Beth before I had these conversations, because at the time, she was one of the rare CMOs actively participating and blogging on LinkedIn. After this, Beth became Vice Chair at GE and her commitment hasn’t wavered.
If you take a look at Beth on LinkedIn, she fully embraces the platform, has well over 700,000 followers, she’s published 54 blogs, really embraced video, and she seeks to inspire business leaders for the future of business.
Blog topics include
- Leading change
- Being a visionary
- And more
Across this spectrum, I hear Beth talking about the humanity of business and that is a topic I really care about.
Equally, as a marketing professional, Beth’s content speaks to me, and as someone moving into a futurist role, that combination is even more interesting. That’s why I added Beth. Her knowledge and insight feed my curiosity and that is what makes a beautiful personal brand.
Beth also made it into LinkedIn Top Voices 2017: Influencers, and all are worth checking out.
I encourage you to take a look at these three ladies’ profiles and review what they do as a source of inspiration.
There is no one style I can recommend for becoming a social leader. We all must work out what our magic is (our eminence) and then amplify it digitally. I’ve worked with corporate leaders who are natural philosophers, mentors, or those want to stand up and fight sexual trafficking or inequality as a core topic. Some want to talk about specific customer issues they are dealing with every day, the importance of diversity in the workplace, bringing to life technology trends, and others have a desire to inspire people.
Your focus is what sets you apart, and it’s what makes your heart beat every day. What is that for you? What is the message you yearn to share with the world? Once you know it, own it. That’s the sweet spot of building a powerful and credible reputation on social media.
If you need some ideas, here’s my top 20 next steps – some actions and some ideas you can apply across your social participation. If you do these 20, you’ll be off to an excellent start in 2018.
Let me know if there’s anything you’d add? I love to learn.
And with that, I’m looking forward to another amazing year in 2018 – hope you are too.
Multicultural Rosie care of Shutterstock.
Photos of each lady copied from their LinkedIn profiles.
Thank you so much for reading my blog. I really appreciate it. If you like it, I’d love a comment, or perhaps you can tell me who your favorite professional is on social media? Of course, please feel free to share with your communities, because that’s what this is all about today – sharing and giving to each other.
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