It feels like the age of #NextGenBusinessGrowth
A time where we embrace Brand Networking in return for a healthy sales funnel, increased brand equity and new people & brands to collaborate and co-create with.
It occurs to me, that as we deepen the quality of our brand networking, we spin a more meaningful ecosystem with which our brand can co-exist with those who compliment our mission, vision, products and ethos.
And that means we bring a new dimension of value to the audience we serve.
If I had to sketch out a formula that would underpin the philosophy that is #NextGenBusinessGrowth, it would be this:
Brand Networking is a term I made up for this last week
I stumbled across it as I was sifting through my own materials on the brand journey from brand awareness to brand recognition, to brand preference to brand loyalty.
It (the term Brand Networking) just kind of shimmied into my mind's eye - and as I examined its meaning across the usual brand journey - I realised the brand journey holds true - and - it wants innovating into the next iteration.
So I added Inner Circle as the final stop on the brand journey and drew a picture for your reference...
As for the meaningful eco-system I am on about...
...it is simply a curated community that contains:
The brands, (partners, vendors, industry research firms, industry associations that all have a desire to serve your ideal audience, too!)
Your audience - why not invite members of your ideal audience to join in on the conversation (see #criticalthoughtleadership) that seeks to innovate an industry,
And finally media platforms, industry meet ups and similar for those conversations to take place on.
As for Critical Thought Leadership
I'd like to suggest Critical Thought Leadership that is infused with the intention of contributing to the evolution and innovation of an industry. A tall order, I am well aware.
What is inherent in this idea of Critical Thought Leadership, is that it insists on individuals bringing their personal best. A situation that is not right for everyone, at any given point in time, (sure) but it is one worthy of pursuing.
Thought Leadership and Personal Branding emerged with a vengeance circa 2015 (it was around way before then, but 2015 was a paradigm shift that you could touch).
2015 was the year the world went from head only business, to head & heart business. See my (somewhat embarrassing) bit of research on the Conscious Economy Rising - the synthesis of a consumption economy with a conscious economy where I undertook a bit of research to better understand what I was seeing and experiencing 7 years ago in 2015.
And the flood gates opened way back when; we all took to our respective blogs to document, share and write about what was important to us at the time.
It served its purpose, it shifted industry, it innovated the world as we know it and now... the time has come for us to do better.
Critical Thought Leadership encapsulates an idea of mine that is simply this:
Do not read anything without the intention of adding your genius to it.
Standing on the shoulders of giants and all that - it is an idea that when applied, means we view the person behind the content we are perusing with respect and care, we are present, we are hearing and listening simultaneously, and we are wanting to add value to raise the bar for us all. Many of you are doing this now - my hat is off to you. I continue to practice parts of this daily.
I'll end with this - #NextGenBusinessGrowth
(yes - another term I made up - inspiration hit me hard the other week) is a philosophy that I have given this name and this particular context to, - AND - it is how many people operate like today, by nature.
It has always been - in all sorts of wonderful forms - you, and people you know, probably recognise this approach as something you already do today, but maybe never articulated it in this way before.
My point is this - it has always been, because it plays into the fundamentals of being human.
The human desire for expansion; expanding a network, expanding influence, expanding income - and it also plays into our inherent need to be social, to reciprocate - all while paying homage to that gem of an African Proverb
If you want to go fast, go alone.
If you want to go far, go together.
Special mention and gratitude goes to the late great Barbara Marx Hubbard - a woman who has inspired my purpose, my way of doing business and my writing.
And the late great Joe Guthrie - my dear friend from Galway - who challenged me to speak up, show up and dance with punches that came from doing just that. He led his life by example - and I think of him and our conversations often.
And finally Leo Cullen - who has been in more conflict and friction-full conversations with me than anyone else, as we punched holes in my ideologies and wrestled through my resistance to changing a business approach that I have been nurturing over a life time, into something that also wanted (needed)... evolution and innovation. Meh!
Such is life.