74 Lessons From #POSSIBLEConference

The Content Creators Conference program was loaded with diverse speakers who got to unpack their brands for us. They all gave the audience an opportunity to see how deliberate every little part of their brand is communicated. It was a memorable gathering immersed with great lessons and this is a listicle of everything that I learned in those two days.

  1. Proverb spoke about his challenges as a brand and one of them is staying relevant. He explained that the market evolves so he’s had to reposition his brand a couple of times through the years to stay in demand.
  2. There are many strategies that have been implemented in the background by his team to transform his look from that of a Hip Hop star to the Radio/TV personality that he is now.
  3. He emphasized a lot, that none of it is ever by fluke. He didn’t stumble across the new image, he deliberately aligned his aspirations to the opportunities he wanted to attract and other brands he wanted to collaborate with. It was all pre-planned and it’s required a certain level of consistency.
  4. ‘Your brand must communicate your own personal values at all times.’
  5. ‘Prostituting yourself in the beginning is almost unavoidable.’ He insists it is both required and necessary in the early days for building your brand.
  6. ‘Prostituting however must never be at the sacrifice of your morals. Don’t allow your brand to be controlled by other people who have the power to destroy everything you’ve worked hard on.’
  7. Proverb admitted that even his best ideas have turned out to be major unexpected failures sometimes. And even though it’s been hard, he’s taught himself to let go and not allow himself to be too precious about things that just won’t work out.
  8. Another one of my favorites from his speech was that ‘One has to allow a lot to fall away as you establish and grow your brand. Sometimes it’s your loved ones who will have a hard time understanding and appreciating the new direction you are taking of refining and working on yourself.’
  9. He says he would rather have a medium following for staying true to his brand, rather than having a large following for compromising what he believes in.
  10. ‘My brand is a challenge that I enjoy and invest a lot of hard work in. I refuse to pursue opportunities that go against my values or even being part of a project that I wouldn’t ever want my kids to see.’
  11. ‘Don’t do yourself the disservice of limiting your brand and only sticking to one thing. As a creative, explore all your interests.’
  12. ‘Don’t be too precious about your brand, diversity and collaboration are the best tools for sustenance.’
  13. ‘Start with a plan, not an idea. A creative strategic insight becomes the personality of what you want to create.’
  14. ‘Be brave. Be yourself. Originality is staying true to your brand. Be bold about your convictions and stick to them.’
  15. ‘Work with people you like. Collaborations should be about enjoyed partnerships.’
  16. ‘Don’t be afraid to try and test things out.’
  17. ‘We need to realize that we are all already influencers but the only skill we need to learn is how to convey that in a way that works.’
  18. ‘Learn how to take a photograph. Even if it isn’t a natural talent for you, practice and you will get better at it. Gone are the days when people’s attention were captured by only a caption, these days they are more visual, so it’s really more photos than anything that tends to get a better response.’
  19. ‘It’s your flipping job. Take it serious so others can too. Your personal brand may not be all you put out there but you do should be incredibly awesome. Make it your job to be aware of what you want to be known and recognized as by your followers/audience and other brands.’
  20. ‘Sacrifice personal time until you’ve built a brand. You need to be purpose driven and really committed to making it work in your favor.’
  21. ‘Quality over quantity (followers). People should connect with you on a personal level. Be genuine. Make real connections with the followers you already have. Rather focus your energy building a community rather than just a large following.’
  22. ‘If being a content creator/influencer is your chosen path, then allow the natural progression of your efforts to lead you to the right opportunities.’
  23. ‘Work really hard and eventually you will get really good at it.’
  24. ‘Don’t be an asshole. People won’t want to work with you. Be honest about your views, opinions or deal breakers without being insensitive/offensive.’
  25. ‘Everything else has already been done before but fortunately what you have to offer hasn’t. The world is waiting for what you have to contribute.’
  26. ‘Be very conscious as a creative of the landscape and the environment you want to fit in.’
  27. ‘Learn as much as possible. Research and get mentored if possible.’
  28. ‘Collaborate intellectual property and utilize it as a resource. There is power in collaboration, it brings in the element of diversification into your brand.’
  29. ‘Use the resources at your reach right now. Don’t make excuses.’
  30. ‘Be deliberate in defining yourself in the industry you want to grow in
  31. ‘Innovation of own original ideas is crucial as a creative. Breathe life into your ideas.’
  32. ‘Set yourself apart. Create a brand that is distinctive.’
  33. ‘Work with other brands but make those opportunities work for you too. Be dedicated to bringing something worthwhile and valuable to the table. Make contributions that are unique and innovative.’
  34. ‘Apply your own approach and tell your story through your work.’
  35. ‘As long as you are still in the Creative Industry, you will always be a student, commit yourself to learning and that will certainly ensure that you grow.’
  36. ‘Your brand is your selling tool, basically an online resume.’
  37. ‘Follow up your ideas with actual human meet-ups.’
  38. ‘The language you use to communicate yourself will always be the basis of how you are known.’
  39. ‘Have a very clear idea of how you want to portray your story. Build credibility in how you want to package yourself. Social media is the best place to start.
  40. ‘People buy into people before they commit themselves to buying a brand. Your story is what connects with them not only what you are selling.’
  41. ‘Your surroundings are a good place for drawing inspiration.’
  42. ‘Be brave, don’t wait for brands to approach you. You can also pitch your ideas to them.’
  43. ‘Your ideas are valuable, they are what will be bring you the most money.’
  44. ‘Go after your dreams, pursue them relentlessly.’
  45. ‘Create your own path, a unique fingerprint that always makes your work recognizable and associated with greatness.’
  46. ‘Have a plan and be very sure of who you are.’
  47. ‘Always be actively thinking about what you want to put out there.’
  48. ‘Deconstructing what you already have helps you to have a new perspective and a better direction of what you want or where you want to go. Then bring all that to life.’
  49. ‘You have to do that by looking at everything that makes up who you are; personal traits, topics that interests and things that inspire you.’
  50. ‘You can’t keep everything from that list. You might even have to discard a whole lot actually. This exercise is crucial to assist in reinventing yourself to only be what you want your brand to be perceived as.’
  51. ‘Ask yourself: Is it distinctive? Is it adaptable? Is it memorable? Is it visible?’
  52. ‘Your logo, colors, typography and imagery/illustration should always link back to who you are/personality.’
  53. ‘You are not a f*cking brand. You are HUMAN first. Branding should only be how you convey yourself.’
  54. ‘Network. Prove your worth.’
  55. ‘The goal is for others to talk about your brand.’
  56. ‘Collaborate with bloggers who reflect your own values.’
  57. ‘Travel and reach out to other creatives.’
  58. ‘Research and find contacts who will take a genuine interest in your ideas.’
  59. ‘Listen and respect people, they are the content.’
  60. ‘Keep a notebook to write down things you don’t want to forget.’
  61. ‘Don’t just be an interviewer but engage guests so that what you create is authentic and real.’
  62. ‘Accept and appreciate criticism.’
  63. ‘Sometimes you have to let go of some things for the benefit of the whole project.’
  64. ‘Check your analytics: What trends are working for you already? What could work for you from others?’
  65. ‘Strategize: Based on your objectives who do you want to reach? How do you want to reach them?’
  66. ‘Distribute: Find your audience outside your blog/vlog? Which social media do they use? Where do they spend their online time? Which brands would promote your videos?’
  67. ‘Make people linger.’
  68. ‘Figure out what it is that you do well.’
  69. ‘Honor your medium.’
  70. ‘Never become a professional, always be a student.’
  71. ‘Ask yourself, how do people perceive me?’
  72. ‘Embrace your stories even those that have come with failure.’
  73. ‘When you create, make it pretty.’
  74. ‘What do people say about you when you are not there to correct them?’
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