Marketing innovation through personal brands

Louise KellyMany hold the belief in “an idea whose time has come”. They have a sense of a collective consciousness that births an idea or new concept at the right time, with ideas often born in many places, simultaneously. An artist or entrepreneur is perceived as the conduit through which an idea is born.

Research by HeartMath Institute and RMIT in Melbourne have studied the creative process of entrepreneurs and have some startling evidence to support this thinking, suggesting entrepreneurs have a stronger premonition, that is their ability to perceive the future state, than others. It is this entrepreneurial premonition, which is the gift of our great business leaders such as Steve Jobs and the pioneer of Cochlear, Dr Graeme Clark.

More recently research is showing that mavens, the carrier of ideas, are just as important to the rise of a great idea, and the maven is in most cases not the entrepreneur or the artist. The maven is typically the person who has an emotional connection to others, has the ability to land an idea into the mindset and the lives of those people they seek to influence. Every successful entrepreneur needs a maven, though some individuals, like Steve Jobs can be both.

Studies of TEDx, by Julianne Wurm, have revealed that the sticky and viral nature of an idea was directly related to the charismatic appeal of the maven. The research identified that successful mavens carry the message through a few key criteria: their emotional connection to the audience, the clarity of their message and the credibility of their argument, in short their relationship with the audience.

Creating a personal brand to sell new ideas
In this marketplace driven by innovation it is important to note that the maven, the carrier of the idea, is as important as the value behind the idea itself. In order to get this right it is critical your business makes the right choice of maven to spread the word.

So with such compelling evidence pointing to the role of personal brands in marketing innovation, just how does a business choose their perfect maven? Below are some research questions developed by Hearts and Minds that will enable your business to find and cast their perfect maven.

How do they present as people?
What psychological archetypes do we associate them with? Do they belong to the audience’s community? Can they relate as people ie share the same life experiences and aspirations?
What story are they linking to?
When they are trying to embed the idea into my world, how they are they linking this to a story I tell myself about the world?
What values does the maven share with those he is trying to influence? How well do their values align with that of their audience?
How transparent are they in purpose? Are there clear reasons to trust, does the audience understand the motivation behind their message? Is it a win-win message?

So when you are next developing your go to market strategy, make sure you put your personal brands in the content and channel strategies.

Louise Kelly
Founder Thought Leaders Circle

Managing Director
Hearts and Minds

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