3. IT’S YOUR BRAND, LIVE IT!: You have to embody your brand. If my friends are looking for a new product, I’m usually their first call. It could be anything from the best new cleanser to new film. They know that it’s my “thing,” and they know I’ll have an answer. Are you the person people call when they’re entertaining guests at their house? The one they call for financial advice? You are living a brand, and you need to make sure that it’s on message. In this tough economy, when people have jobs available, you want to make sure your personal brand is so well developed that you’re the one they call. How many of us would dare try a hairstylist whose hair looks horrible? This goes for the financial planner whose finances are in shambles and the graphic designer with a horrible business card. You must live your brand every day in every way. And eventually, it will get easier. For me, 15 years into brand building, people definitely understand my brand. I am always adding appropriate extensions, updating, and upgrading my brand, but it’s essentially the same brand I launched 15 years ago. Brands must have staying power, and your brand must have it as well.