Former Gold FM breakfast presenter Jo Stanley spoke at RadioDays Europe about personal branding for radio personalities.
“In my early years at Fox FM the marketing department had one of those meetings and told me my personal brand was ‘pretty, witty, fashionista.’
“I had an ah-ha moment. How did those people get the idea that was me. It wasn’t me, but I didn’t take the trouble to define myself, so someone defined my brand for me… I learnt not to let that happen again.”
From that learning Jo developed a philosophy of personal branding that she shared with the RadioDays audience.
You need to “define your personal brand then step into it,” she advised. If you don’t define your brand someone else will do it for you.
She asked the audience to define the identity of their radio shows in three key words, then she asked them to define the brand attributes of their main competitor. In most cases the key brand attribute words were much the same.
“The reality is that we are all doing pretty much the same kind of thing, so the only thing that really sets the show apart is your personal brand.”
Some of Jo’s tips in defining personal brand include asking yourself, ‘what impact do I want to have?’
Another tip is to interview yourself, asking questions about an exciting moment in your life, the saddest moment in your life, a time when your life changed forever, your greatest regret and other key questions.
Once you have the answers to those questions, go deeper and understand why you got to that moment or why you felt that way. From going deep into yourself you can begin to define your brand.
“Once you have defined your brand, hold true to it and it will be your inspiration.”
For managers and program directors who manage talent she advised: “Help your talent define their personal brand and then let them use it. Don’t call them out for trivial things about their show, but call them out when they don’t stay true to their own personal brand.”
Jo was sacked twice in her radio career, once from Fox FM and more recently from Gold FM. It was the fact that she had already developed a strong personal brand that she was able to withstand the sackings.
Jo spoke to Steve Ahern after her presentation at RadioDays.