What do you want to be famous for?

“What do you want to be famous for?” a question I have asked (and been asked) 5 times in the last 4 days. It tends to stump people at first, with a lot of umming and erring. Ultimately we are talking about your reputation – what you want to be known for and that is of particular interest if you are looking for clients as a business owner or if you are applying for a new job or are wanting to take the next step up the ladder.

What do you want to be famous for?

What do you want to be famous for? (I am really asking you). If you are really struggling on this, consider what you are really good at. Still struggling? Think about what you wish you were good at as that often tells us what we are already good at (though we might not see it). Then come up with a really concise phrase/tagline. Ideally align it with your character, values and strengths so it’s coherent. Let me give you an example:

My brother asked me what I wanted to be known for whilst we were at the park with our kids on a family day out. He is an expert in marketing and we were talking shop. I floundered around to begin with – giving all sorts of statements from “I want to help people” (- too vague) to “I want people to feel safe and empowered and conf-” he cut me off (- too long). He said to me “Tell me in less than three words”. I barely hesitated before I said: “I want to be a lighthouse”. Ok, so not less than three words but concise and confident.

We explored what that might look like, I came up with what it meant to me:

  • To provide a light to those people who are confused, lost or in the dark
  • To provide a safe environment for people to continue their journey
  • Being a beacon in all weathers, day or night (metaphorically, not literally – there need to be boundaries too!)
  • To exist to serve people, not to judge them for the mistakes they may have made
  • To stand alone, an expert in shining my light

How are you getting your message across?

Once you have your contribution to the world – how can you make more of it? How will people know that’s what you’re doing? So for me:

  • How can I shine my light brighter so it can be seen for miles and miles?
  • How can I guide more people?
  • How can I make people feel safe?
  • How can I get people to tell others about visiting the lighthouse?

So I set about telling people – writing this blog, putting it out on Facebook and LinkedIn and actually telling people. My brother encouraged me to consider whether each post I make supports my message. Marketing 101 – but not when you don’t know right? It’s easy to overlook the obvious when you’re learning as you go.

How can you incorporate it?

Remember whether you are marketing yourself  – as an individual transitioning through your career or as a business – it’s all marketing – consciously and subconsciously. Your reputation precedes you and people will judge you on it both positively and negatively. Think about it, we all know one person who can’t keep a secret and do you know what, eventually they are kept out of the loop. Equally, we all know one person who is like a vault – you can tell them anything and they keep your secrets safe.

Once you know what you want to be famous for, tell people at every opportunity, put it into your personal/business brand and be clear and consistent on your message. You will need to consider your values, actions and behaviours too (since the theme this month is trademark behaviours!) and this is what will attract people to you and get people talking.

What footprint do you want to be known for? (It’s) the legacy and journey that you are on. Trust in yourself. Trust in the passion you have (inside) yourself – Drew Waters

If you are feeling lost, confused or are trying to navigate a difficult transition – get in touch and let me shine a light to help you find your way.

Leave a comment