I talk a good deal about personal branding in my writing. At Strut Media Group, I get to meet and interview a lot of business people and learn about their careers and companies. It’s fun and rewarding. The Video News Channels we create and produce for our clients are intended to promote their organizations, and the objective is always a marketing goal; to raise awareness, build the image of the company, get the news out about the company’s activities and drive inquiries.
The most effective interviews – and ones that are the most interesting to watch – are the conversations that go beyond the news of the company and get into the personal insights of the individual delivering the information.
Recently I was talking to a client about doing an Executive Profile for him – a one-on-one Charlie Rose-style interview – and he asked; “Well what would we talk about?”
I gave him a brief response about the format of the program and the PR value of this type of content, not only for his organization but also for his personal brand. Later, I decided to follow up with an email to give him a more in-depth explanation.
Here’s what I wrote:
With your many years of experience, you have achieved a deep understanding of your business and the industries and people it serves. It goes beyond the nuts and bolts of what you sell. Your perspective and understanding have a broader context. In these interviews, we like to get the opinions and insights of the individual beyond the mandate of the company they work for.
We like to get personal in a business context. What does your background and life experience bring to the work you do? Do you have any short stories that illustrate and illuminate your perspective on certain issues or the industry in general? What was it like in the past? How has that changed? What does the future hold? What are your hopes and expectations – for the industry, your company, your family and perhaps the solidarity you hold for the rest of the people on the planet we all live on?
The idea is not to get too sentimental of course, but these are the questions that lie behind everything we do in business. It’s these values, perspectives and insights that have an engaging effect on an audience because they go deeper than the profits and bottom lines that business discussions can often dwell on. It’s about telling your story rather than pitching your product or business.
Having this perspective in mind as you think about your interview will keep your thoughts focused and help to guide the direction of the conversation.
I look forward to doing this interview with you. Let’s arrange a time soon.
I have seen how this type of personally delivered content is more engaging, more memorable and more effective as a result. It all comes down to our basic human desire to be remembered. We all want to be remembered and that is, interestingly, the ultimate objective of good marketing.
Thank you for your time.