On the quiet 7-Mile Beach in Negril, Jamaica resides a master personal brander. His name is Jamaica Ring Charlie. He actually has his own YouTube channel. You should check him out. I met Charlie a number of years ago. You see in Jamaica, people sell their goods along the beach, tempting tourists to Parasail, buy socks, bracelets, shells, and other things that I cannot mention 😉 But, Jamaica Ring Charlie is unique. He makes rings out of colorful telephone wire. He twists this wire into the most amazing ring designs and does it on the fly. He created a jingle to attract tourists to check out his rings. While the other beachfront entrepreneurs are just calling out “BRACELETS!” or “SHELLS!”, Charlie sings, “Ring, Ring, Ring, Jamaica Ring, one for the boy, two for the girls…” His tune is so catchy that my husband made it his ringtone.
This year was different. As I heard the Jingle approaching from afar, I recognized something different. I arose from my lounge, peeked over my sunglasses, and stared at Charlie in amazement. What as different were the two adorable puppies Charlie had following him and the addition of “Ring, Ring Jamaica Ring, puppy guy…”. The young girls at the resort started to flock to Charlie. They were petting, feeding, holding the puppies. Marketing Genius! I told him as much. Once he sold a bunch of rings and started walking down the strand, I screamed Charlie!!! He came over and we exchanged hugs since it has been about 8 months since I saw him last. I asked him about the puppies. He said he found their pregnant mother and took care of her and the puppies ever since. He uses some of the proceeds from his ring sales to buy them food. I asked him if he was aware of his genius. He chuckled and said of course.
Personal Branding is just that…personal! You do not have to be a marketing genius to personally brand yourself. It is as simple as not following the status quo and creating something different that separates you from the millions of others that do what you do. Here are some tips to help you create your personal brand:
Be uniquely you. Embrace who you are and what makes you different. Challenge yourself to step outside of the imaginary box the world creates for you.
Hustle! Charlie has to hustle for food to put on his table. He is out on 7-mile beach every day, rain or shine. You have to put yourself out there and start creating a presence for yourself. You have to attract people to you and what you have to offer.
Be Creative! Charlie does not have any educational background. He was a boxer in Jamaica in his early days and a ring maker today. Yet, he is a marketing genius. He uncovered a different way to better bring his customers to him, rather than wait for them to find him.
Be like Charlie. Stop doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different result. Challenge the status quo and create something awesome for yourself.