BlackEnterprise.com caught up with the dynamic Jennifer Ransaw-Smith, CEO of Brand id Strategic Partners, to discuss personal branding and digital presence elevation.
Ransaw-Smith shared valuable insight to help readers position themselves for greater success in the new year:
Black Enterprise: As a personal branding expert and elevation strategist, you are well known for your philosophy for clients to become “undeniably fierce.” What does that mean?
Ransaw-Smith: Being “undeniably fierce” means being unapologetic about who you are. It’s knowing, at a fundamental level, who you are, what you do, and what separates you from everyone else. It’s when a person’s external life matches their internal vibe, and the only validation they require is from the self.
BE: What do most people get wrong about personal branding?
Ransaw-Smith: That 100% of brand work is external. What I didn’t realize when I started my company nine years ago, is that 90% of personal branding is an inside job. The world will never see you higher than you see yourself. While I could provide you with the most cutting-edge tips, tools, and strategies, if you don’t internally believe what you are saying or trying to convey about your brand, it will never work. Others won’t buy into what you are selling.
A few years ago, I recognized a major gap in my belief system about working with C-suite executives and game-changing entrepreneurs. Even though I wanted to attract this niche audience, I struggled with internal roadblocks that prevented it; two words—self-worth. Internally, I didn’t feel worthy of operating on the level I desired. So, I asked myself, how can I become the strategic counsel for someone running a Fortune 500 company, if I don’t even feel “worthy” of walking up and starting a conversation?
So, I dedicated an entire year to “internal branding and elevation,” meaning I did an extraordinary amount of “mindset work.” A year later my, practice was full of senior executives and high-powered entrepreneurs; every call I was fielding was from someone in my ideal “niche audience.”
BE: How would you describe your expertise?
Ransaw-Smith: I specialize in helping clients get clear about who they are, what they do, and what separates them from everyone else. I then help them leverage their undeniable fierceness, to elevate their visibility, credibility, influence, and impact within their industry.
Brand id Strategic Partners, L.L.C., is the nation’s first personal elevation agency. Our services run the gamut, from elevating someone’s mindset and personal image, to helping clients write a book, launch a speaking career, or increase their media coverage. My clients range from Ivy League doctors, who want to elevate their visibility outside of their practice, to corporate executives who want to get on the radar of global organizations looking for new C-suite talent.
BE: What is your best advice for someone who’s fallen down?
Ransaw-Smith: GET UP. When we shift the way we look at failure, we begin to understand that falling and failing isn’t the end of the world. It’s just the universe’s way of telling us to consider alternatives.
I once heard that entrepreneurship is a “full contact sport,” meaning that, if you step in the arena to play this game, you will get bruised. Once you dust yourself off, however, those bruises look and feel 100% better than sitting in the stands as a spectator, wishing you had the courage to play.
BE: Where can our readers find more information about you and Brand id Strategic Partners?
Ransaw-Smith: Check out my website, or visit my:
Karima Mariama-Arthur, Esq. is the founder and CEO of WordSmithRapport, an international consulting firm specializing in professional development. Follow her on Twitter: @wsrapport or visit her website,WordSmithRapport.com.