Personal Branding – be known for giving that little extra!

Have you ever had one of those days when everything that happened seemed to culminate into one big finale? Today I got an email from BNET, one of the business sites that I subscribe to that was promoting a new book called “212-the extra degree” by Sam Parker cofounder of Give More Media. The email came with a promotional video attachment that really caught my attention. You can view the video at The “212” concept is centered around the concept of how putting forth one-degree of additional effort can make a tremendous difference in everything we do. At 211 degrees, water is hot – At 212 degrees, it boils, and with boiling water comes steam, and with steam, you can power a train. It is truly a creative marketing concept. I wish I had thought of it. I fully intend to get the book and read it.

Back to my story. This evening I conducted a presentation in front of a room full of college marketing and engineering students. The students were members of both the UCF chapters of SMPS and ABC. My presentation was an overview on Marketing within the AEC environment. The message being carried throughout the presentation focused on the importance of “Thinking Outside the Box” and stepping up marketing efforts to make a statement. It was really on point…and the best part was that the students got the message.

When I was preparing my presentation I did not want to duplicate anything that other presenters before me had already covered. I figured that the other presenters had already covered the marketing side of the industry. SMPS was the organization that originally invited me to speak. Knowing that UCF had a student ABC chapter and knowing that the material I was presenting would benefit both organizations, I had them contact the ABC chapter and invite them as well. I decided to focus the presentation on four primary stages of marketing.

1.     Building the FOUNDATION – Knowing what you are marketing and whom you are marketing to, basically doing your Market and Product Research.

2.     Designing an efficient INFRASTRUCTURE – by making sure that systems are developed and in place along with team member buy in

3.     Developing a sturdy FOUNDATION – developing the tools necessary to promote and communicate the message

4.     Managing the CLOSE OUT – by not dropping the ball after the project win.

This overall presentation follows along with my book that I am currently writing titled “Building the AEC Industry – Beyond the “Build” Environment.”

When I was done with the presentation I had about 10 of the students come up wanting to thank me for presenting in a format that they could understand and make applicable to their own purposes. They stated that this was the first presentation that had given them a clear understanding of the AEC marketing process. Since the presentation I have received 4 separate emails from the students that I plan to include in my own marketing materials.

The lesson learned today is to not assume anything. Follow your gut. I figured that although others had presented before me on marketing within the industry, they had not covered the strategy or the processes for EFFECTIVE marketing. That and really enjoying my job came through in my presentation. The students picked up on it and were pumped. Several are now even thinking of considering the AEC environment as a career alternative.

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