Published on April 22, 2019, at 4:01 p.m.
by Cassidy Anderson.
“I haven’t been watching TV lately unless it’s sports.”
“That’s so on-brand for you.”
This was an actual conversation I had the other day, and it got me thinking: What makes something “on-brand” for anyone?
One of the most important things in our world today is personal branding, and that is showcased on social media. People, like Ellie Schnitt who now works for Barstool Sports as the star of her own podcast series, have even started their careers by having a strong presence on Twitter or Instagram. In Schnitt’s case, crying has become “on-brand” for her. The podcast’s Instagram page even has “crying but thriving” in its bio.
While contemplating my own personal brand, I remembered the words of fellow Platform writer Anna Jones: “Becoming self-aware is one of the most important aspects of a personal brand.”
In my opinion, the things you love can contribute to your personal brand. Professional athletes base their personal brands on the sport they love, and many times they use their social media presence and other platforms to give back to their communities.
Regarded as one of the best left-handed pitchers to ever play the game of baseball, Clayton Kershaw also uses his success to help fund the operation of a charity called Kershaw’s Challenge. The mission of this charity is to encourage others to give back to people in need and has donated over $6 million to communities in need. It operates in the United States, the Dominican Republic and Africa. Kershaw’s Challenge even has its own Twitter and Instagram pages in conjunction with the personal accounts of Clayton Kershaw himself.
One of the things Kershaw loves (baseball) is part of his brand and allows him to give back to the community. Therefore, baseball and philanthropy are “on-brand” for him.
In the case of Yasiel Puig, his energy on and off the baseball field has branded him as baseball’s wild horse. Though some see him as a selfish player and toxic clubhouse presence, Puig has used his platform to create the Wild Horse Children’s Foundation. Its work has remained “on-brand” with Puig himself by using baseball to inspire “children and families in underserved communities” to live healthier lives.
The branding of the Wild Horse Children’s Foundation remains “on-brand” with Puig in its promotion as well. The Instagram page that represents the organization features the baseball player showing off his outrageous personality in the game and in support of the children.
But, what if you’re not famous? Can there still be something that is “on-brand” for you? I say yes. In life and in your career, it’s important to distinguish what you love that can help enhance your personal brand; it may even give you a platform for bigger things.