The future of branding your product is personal branding

Mark Schaefer
4 min readFeb 8, 2024

Beginning with my book KNOWN, I’ve been a relentless advocate for the critical importance of personal branding. Although there are still some skeptics, it’s hard to believe that there is even a debate about this issue any more.

Not only is personal branding crucial for an individual’s long-term success, increasingly it is going to determine whether your company succeeds in this world. I’ll make my case for that today.

You must be known

I recently read an excellent summary of the business case for the personal brand by the talented young writer Nicholas Cole. He wrote:

If you don’t have a personal brand online, people aren’t going to work with you.

Do you know how every single conversation I have with people in business goes? Like this.

“Hey Cole, yeah so I was looking you up online. Really impressive stuff.

Actually, I was reading one of your articles, which got me thinking…”.

Every single time. Without fail.

We are in a transition period in business.

When you meet with someone, what do you do beforehand?

You look them up online.

What do you do after that coffee meeting?

You look them up online.

What do you do when you’re trying to figure out how you can work together?

You look them up online.

What do you do when you’re choosing between working with one person versus another person?

You look them up online.

Over the next few years, this is only going to become more ingrained into the way we do business. We can’t help it. We make decisions based off what we see, and if all we see is an outdated presence online, we’re going to assume that person is outdated.

The future of branding

Obviously creating a personal brand can boost your career and open new doors. But if you look at the market trends, I’ll argue that…

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Mark Schaefer

Keynote speaker, marketing strategy consultant, Rutgers U faculty and author of 10 books including KNOWN, Marketing Rebellion, and Belonging to the Brand!