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Dec 11, 201812:46 PMOpen Mic

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5 things celebrities can teach us about branding

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In late September I attended Brand ManageCamp in Las Vegas where 400-plus marketers gathered to discuss branding best practices. Aside from picking up tips from the lineup of keynote speakers, I also popped across the street for a visit of Madame Tussauds wax attraction. Celebrities are masters of personal branding, so much so that some of them only need to go by one name, and among the 100 wax celebrity figures I discovered some branding lessons to share.

Define your brand’s style

Who would Prince be without his purple? Johnny Cash was known as “the man in black.” Would Elvis still be considered king without his bedazzled jumpsuits? Just as celebrities carefully craft their personal style identities, brands must also define their look through use of a style guide. A proper style guide gives your brand a definition through its logo, color palette, fonts, photography choices, and voice.

Your brand is always “on stage”

Although celebrities would like to escape the spotlight and live a regular life when they are not working, with the paparazzi and proliferation of cellphones they can never really get out of the public eye. A consequence of this is the need to be conscious that you are always “on stage.”

Similarly, brands are living in a 24/7/365 world and what your employee says on social media can end up being a tweet heard round the world if it’s not managed carefully. Be sure to have a brand-monitoring process in place.

Quality matters

When it comes to a celebrity’s appearance for red carpet events, nothing but the best will do. That’s why they turn to fashion, makeup, jewelry, and hair experts to ensure their style is on point.

Companies also need to be careful whose hands they put their brand into for delivery of their marketing messages. A poorly executed campaign by an underskilled vendor can come back to make the brand look bad. Be sure you are working with experts in their craft.


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