How to build a Brand – BRND 102


Having dealt with personal branding just a week ago, this episode will bring to light 5 Ideal steps to building a brand (BRND 102). It will provide a step by step and a proven approach to guide and direct whoever is willing and determined to build a successful brand. One key factor in branding is that, even if you are selling a product/service, the one selling is not separated from whatever she/he sells–You can’t simply alienate the seller from the product. For these strategic reasons, the following points are worthy of consideration in the process of building a brand.

Firstly, there is the need to identity strengths and weaknesses. This is at most the best opportunity to exploit if you are to break into any competitive field and succeed. Identifying your strengths and weaknesses helps you to know the methods to employ to improve upon yourself and also the areas that must be improved. In building a brand, it is very keen to know who you really are and be definitive as possible because unless you are inventing something, there certainly would exist prototypes of what ever service you are going to offer.

Also, know your product. Apart from identifying your industrial strengths and weaknesses, it now dons on you to label what ever product you are selling. By so doing, you get the exact description, value and worth of your product or service which would be presentable in the eyes of your clients or who ever may be in need of your service. If you know your product/service very well, you will know how exactly you can sell to even the ‘hardcore’ client with little of no  bargains.

Thirdly, you must know who your competitors are.
This is the most important part and the very reason for which branding is a necessity. Whatever service you are offering, believe it or not, you are not going to operate in isolation. Even if you operate as a monopolist in your field, for how long would you continue to build a great wall to bar competitors? Knowing your competitors as well as their, customers and the products/service they offer will not only make you a spies but will also provide you with options to act either in accordance with or contrary to the principles and strategies your competitors are operating. This must be done to capitalize on both strengths and weaknesses of your competitors and to be able to situate your brand and to stay at par if not above your competitors.

In addition, you must “Dare” to be different. What is the essence of identifying your strengths and weaknesses, knowing your product/service and finally knowing your competitors if not for the quest to be different? The first 3 points will quickly reveal the features and characteristics of ‘ the seller (yourself)’ , the product and the environment in which one operates. The trio , well harnessed will be an incredible tool to penetrate a highly competitive market. At this stage , you are well versed with the basic information and the only tool available to employ is a tool to be different. Be different in appearance, human/customer relations and product delivery as well as other competitive advantages you may have identified during the process of identifying yourself, product and competitors.

Finally, embrace changing trends.
Throughout the history of man, change and progress are best explained as ubiquitous. Therefore a 21st century man that fails to see change and embrace it is better off living in the prehistoric era. Changes and alterations in the conventional principles of doing business are being spearheaded by technology which is changing virtually everything changeable and even at a pace faster than Michael Jackson changed the shape of his nose. There is the need to plan and prepare adequately to embrace the changes brought forth by technology and other agents of change so that in the event that type-writers become less relevant, you will comfortably migrate and adopt to the current trend.

To a very substantial extent, I believe these points will equip one with the necessary skills to be in business and also survive in a very competitive environment. There may be other subsidiary points such as knowing your ‘target market’ (buyers). However, I considered this point subsidiary to the aforementioned 5 because, in the process of knowing your competitors, you are more likely to come into contact with their buyers and you study them as well.

What’s next after building a brand for yourself? Sustainability! Your guess is as good as mine. Hopefully, I will come your way another time with the final episode which will emphasize on ‘How to sustain a brand’ (BRND 103)

Until then, you can leave a comment or provide suggestions right under this post.


Personal Branding – BRND 101

I was fascinated to have come across a satiric question challenging one of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’sfavorite quotes “The heights by great men reached and kept were not attained by sudden flight, but they, while their companions slept, were toiling upward in the night.”

The satiric question was ‘ why do people choose to toil at night while they can perform the same task during the day?

Branding has been resonating in my eardrum since my exposure to that question and I think this piece will answer why Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and others who believe in that timeless quote would continue to toil at night whilst our companions sleep.

What at all is Branding and why it is becoming increasingly pertinent to build oneself a brand in our days? Well, maybe you may not be as branded as Toyota or as the lyrical entertainer – Sarkodie is in modern times but if you ever dream of setting yourself apart and on top of your game, then branding is a prerequisite. Red, blue, green, gray , black and white are collectively called ‘colours’ but branding is what makes them easily to be identified individually.

Personal branding is the gateway to staying atop of your field and be as definite as possible in your group.
What you do and say across time, becomes who you are and by definition, becomes a brand in the eyes of the people around you.

Branding is necessary because we are all ordinary until someone does the very thing we all do in a different (extra-ordinary) way to command a higher prize/price, patronage, acceptance and recognition.

Before the dominance of the social media titan – Facebook, there were several medium for communication and social interactions but these platforms did not kill the zeal of Mark Elliot Zuckerberg to make a difference – which really has paid off.

A personal brand is the real and distinctive feature of oneself and what one does. It’s what comes to mind when your name/company/field is zoomed. Space exploration has long been linked with Neil Armstrong not only because he was among those who have been to space before but also , and most importantly, for breaking the jinx of being confined to earth and leaving a mark elsewhere in outer space. In the “Biography of Neil Armstrong”, NASA TV in August 2012 reported ‘Armstrong gained the distinction of being the first man to land a craft on the moon and first to step on its surface.’ This is an affirmation of an identity he created for himself before his departure and for which he would forever be remembered for.

Branding is the distinction between two or more players in the same industry and notably with branding, you do the same thing in a different way.

There is less doubt about the fact that the compelling nature of the 21st century business requires one to be competitive lest be kicked out of the game. To be competitive is to understand the volatile nature of modern day interactions and as well accept that, the changing phase of modern times requires one to build a unique brand that could make them standout and be recognized. If you are a student, musician, writer, Lecturer or whatever your status maybe, try to be different, innovative and creative to capitalize on originality and pride yourself with the leading name in your field.

Now on the question which instigated this piece, it’s only in the womb where others spend more or less time than others but once on earth, 24 hours is a day for everyone — we all have equal opportunities in terms of day and night but what makes us different is that hurdle we overcome to go the extra mile. For instance, when we need to prepare for four hours in a day, those like Henry Wadsworth will do the (ordinary) 4 hours that everyone does in a day and do an additional (extra) hours in the night all alone. In the end, he is more likely to become skillful and efficient at what he prepared for. He has branded himself to do the ordinary things in the extraordinary way.

To excel is to be different and when everyone is standing, you can stand out. Indeed branding can be very expensive looking at the sacrifices involved but the long run implication is that, branding pays the cost in excess of higher returns, profits, recognition and above all, a branded name.

Hope I’ve been able to expose the hidden motive on why people choose to go the extra mile and do the ordinary thing the extraordinary way. Embracing yourself with the various features in your field that only a hand full of people can have put you on a higher pedestal. It’s time to build a brand and it’s time to set yourself apart.

In the preceding episode, we will walk thoroughly through the 5 most proven ways to building a successful brand.

Until then , watchout!

Branding 101 Intro…

In the coming days, I will come your way with one of the most  cherished attributes of succeeding on one’s field.

I call it branding. Some see it as an added advantage. Others  see it as a requirement whereas others also see it as a competitive tool. Irrespective of ones purview , It stretches  beyond the number of years of operation to the very unique identity one has caved for him/herself or organization.

This series will focus on 3 thematic episodes of branding which are:

Personal branding – BRDN 101,

How to build a brand – BRDN 102


How to Sustain a brand BRDN 103.

All these will provide an insight on building and  sustaining a brand across time.

I personally believe also that it will  the bases for individuals to learn and update themselves with the rubrics of branding.

Enjoy soon…

The bitter bile to heal the Black wound – Piesie Godfred

The terminology ‘Shithole’ has all of a sudden gained global attention courtesy a ‘non-Shitholer.’ First of all, let’s walk through the lexical meaning of a ‘Shithole’. A googled meaning of the term is ‘an extremely dirty, shabby, or otherwise unpleasant place.’ If the meaning is anything to go by, then ‘shithole’ is such a huge derogatory statement to be used on a particular class of the Human race.

I’m not in any way going to justify Trump’s statement on Africans , people of colour and less developed nations of the world. Inasmuch as the victims of his statement would condemn and as well want him to apologize, let’s take a look at the angle from which he tagged Africans and the likes as ‘shitholes’ to know if the demanded apology is a necessary call on the ‘powerful’ president.

Before his journey to the White House, the then business tycoon (now president) of the United States, Donald Trump has made a lot of Controversial statements about the African continent and the Black race which has not gone so well with the African people. His recent comment in which he is believed to have referred to Africans as ‘shitholes’ seems to add more dirt to the skin of the African. Frankly speaking, President Trump has been blunt, Frank and straightforward when projecting the ills of the ‘Black Continent.’

Before we put his head on the chopping board, let we as Africans assess ourselves to know whether or not we deserve the ‘bitter-truths’ he has been spewing against us over the years.

Ghana like any other African nation is no different from what Trump calls a ‘Shithole.’ Foreign aid dependency is like a norm to us. In African, common sense that has been abused overtime has become a norm and whoever speaks against it is an Anti-African.
Won’t we be called a ‘shithole’ if we think higher education and quality healthcare is best provided abroad ?

Won’t we be called a ‘Shithole’ if we award contract to foreign agencies for our basic infrastructural developments to the detriment of our locally trained experts?

Why aren’t we shithole if we continually educate our people to become unemployed graduates and employees instead of entrepreneurs and innovators?

Now, assuming that Trump should apologize, that tag of a Sithole will not be far from our necks for obvious reasons.
If Trump should apologize,
By the next day, a ‘shithole’ will sell on the pavement waiting for a city guard (abaayei) to come and compel him/her to do the right thing.

By the next day, we will continue to think that everything African is the worst and the best comes from the west.

By the next day, politicians of ‘shithole’ nations will draft a budget and seek for fundings else than within.

It is kind of heartbreaking how the African leaders have over the years failed our generation and most likely the next. On the grounds of corruption, our leaders show little or no sign of patriotism and are very eager to sell the good fortunes and blessings of the African continent for nothing but a meager dollar. This coupled with other unkept acts has left a big scar on the dignity of the African and commands little respect for the entire continent.

Trump is not the first to pinpoint the woes of Africans to the face. PLO Lumumba has been talking about the tragedies of Africa for decades and we seem not to have paid heed to his plea.

Ask yourself why former president Jerry John Rawlings recently said ‘I wish I could rule again for at least a year.’ Maybe to clean up a heap of mess in the country yet again.

There are zillions of reasons for the ‘shithole’ comments from Trump. If Trump has a problem, then maybe we also have a problem. I once asked a very learned father of mine a question and his answer was enough to suspend my next question to him. I asked, ‘Dad, what’s the greatest problem of we Africans? ‘ After a deep breath, he calmly said, ‘Kwaku, our problem is, we don’t know our problem and that’s our problem. ”

Trump’s statement may be a good call to Africans to develop her own if we hate to be treated like people from unpleasant place. It’s about time Africans come together to realize development in unity. Our reputation outside has been indelibly soiled.

For as long as we don’t change the way we think, our selfishness and greed and even how we identify ourselves, we will continue to be seen as a ‘shithole’ in the lense of the powerful.

With the above being stated, I leave the conclusion to the rational Ghanaian and the victims of the ‘shithole’ comment across the globe to decipher whether or not Trump’s statement is justifiable and if indeed, an apology is necessary after all.

Glimpse of Tomorrow

The future is long buried in a casket of hope. Brought fourth by the passing turbulent winds of determination, dedication, commitments & sacrifices of today.

This brings the nakedness of  Success to the full glare of those who see beyond the focal length of the eye

Smiles of victory & triumphs in  tranquility ignite the passion to fasten our belts for more toils

Like a telephone pole, tomorrow stands atop of today, motionless like there is no parallax

I seek and yarn to be where I dream of

Until my good is better and my better best, I will only give up when I’m taking the apex in return.


Just like yesterday

Photo credit : Salman Mohammed

Photo credit : Salman Mohammed

Just like yesterday, I sat at my usual comfort zone thinking. Reminiscing and making plans for tomorrow. Tomorrow will I become what I dream of

Tomorrow will I see the beauty of what I have

And again, tomorrow will I forgive you for inflicting that pain on me.

Seconds accumulated to minutes to hours and all too soon, yesterday was wasted as I planned for today.

Precious time were used to plan for years, but winds of execution was not close to my ears.

For planning , I’m potent like a pro! I always wanted to execute my plans tomorrow – for today, I’m planning.

It is today, here in my comfort zone again. I fold my arms and lie on my pillow, I stare the contours of the ceiling up there and a simple cognitive thought struck my skull .

So I asked myself, am I going to waste precious and non-renewable time planning instead of executing the many plans I have just like yesterday?