Your Personal Brand Image FORMULA

Before becoming a visual artist and photographer, I ran a marketing agency for close to two decades. Making the shift from business owner to commercial artist meant that there was no longer a company acting as a buffer between me and the market. Now, it was all about me and my personal brand. Suddenly it mattered how I was representing myself.

As more people came into my studio for professional portraits, I realised that these individuals were on a similar journey. They were all CEOs, thought leaders  and celebrities who invested in their personal brand image to attract more good fortune into their lives.

Having worked with people who have cracked the code of their personal brand image, I wanted to share my Personal Brand Image FORMULA with you. By the end of this article, you will understand the process that will guarantee that you have the perfect mix of professional photos in your portfolio.

Vusi Thembekwayo is an example of an acclaimed business mogul and global speaker who has mastered the art of creating a personal brand image. A courageous businessman who tells it like it is and isn’t afraid of showing up to voice his opinions.

Answer These 3 Questions

To get to the crux of your personal brand image, answer these 3 questions before your next executive photoshoot:

• What 3 words would you use to describe yourself ?

• What 3 words would others use to describe you ?

• How would you like others to describe you this year ?

The key to building a personal brand image is to be authentic, and that means understanding how we see ourselves, how other people see us and how well those two views meet in the middle. Vusi says, "We need mirrors in our lives - people who are going to make sure we are honest and true to who we are."

Your Personal Brand Image FORMULA

Armed with this knowledge, your portfolio of professional photos should be a blend of :

40% how YOU see yourself + 40% how OTHERS see you + 20% DESIRED new image

Building a personal brand image is also about portraying whom we want to be seen as. The trick is to add just a dab (20%) of the new image you’d like others to notice about you. Swaying too far from what makes you yourself, will come across as a fake and your audience will spot this a mile away.

There’s nothing more attractive than simply being YOU in front of the camera 

Take J’Something from Micasa for example. The award-winning musician, chef, and entrepreneur’s personality & personal brand image are inseparable which makes him trustworthy, approachable, and memorable. His business is built around him as a person, which makes them inextricably linked - making his personal branding image his greatest asset.

By spending time understanding who we are, getting feedback on how others see us, and intentionally deciding about how we want to be perceived, we can lay the foundation of a powerful personal brand image.

Before you go to sleep tonight, take some time to answer the 3 questions about how you see yourself, how others see you, and how you'd like to be seen differently for 2021.

About Marc-Gregory

Marc-Gregory is a visual artist and portrait photographer, working with South African leaders, CEO's and celebrities helping them to create powerful personal brand images. Marc-Gregory is currently in production of the upcoming book, ‘In Good Company’, which celebrates South African culture through the lens of our country's top artists and leaders including AKA, Siba Mtongana, Vusi Thembekwayo, J'Something, Nadia Nakai and Maps Maponyane to name a few. Find out more at

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