Thursday, 11 April 2013

Even Margaret Thatcher has a Personal Brand

When Facebook has a group with nearly 40,000 ‘Likes’ whose sole purpose is to track your death, you know that you’re not in the running for a popularity contest. The Facebook group: ‘Is Margaret Thatcher Dead Yet?’ was created in 2010, and only changed its profile picture on April 8th from ‘NOT YET’ to ‘YES, Margaret Thatcher is Dead’. According to comments on the group, there were people that checked the page daily to see if she had passed.

Lady Thatcher, who also goes by a number of names including Iron Lady, Tin Ear, and other colorful names that I will not repeat in this blog, continues to have such a controversial presence. Margaret Thatcher’s 15 second elevator speech would consist of a few facts including being Britain’s first female Prime Minister, and then being re-elected twice to the position. Her ‘personal brand’ is quite a unique one. She has truly left her mark on history.

Some love her, some hate her. Those who love her seem to be the winning side of her reforms, while her enemies are amongst those whom she showed little remorse for as she steamed rolled through her terms.

Personal branding and how we portray our personal brand is very important, especially if you are in a communications based role such as Marketing, Advertising and Politics. In the Internal Marketing Unit of the Masters of Marketing program, we focused on personal branding, particularly what it is, how to develop it, and it’s importance. It still surprises me how many people are not on LinkedIn, especially those who I would have thought surely would have invested enough time to create an on-line professional presence.

Even Margaret Thatcher is on LinkedIn. Her profile might not be very strong, but she still has a personal profile as well as a number of groups about her. And she’s on Facebook as well. Isn’t it time that you spend the time to create or update your on-line personal brand? Hopefully you too won’t have a Facebook group following your death, but rather your on-line presence will lead to positive things.

Mina D'Souza
Current student in the Master of Marketing program at the University of Sydney Business School

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