Today Veteran News Anchor Bbale Francis died in the morning and on reading the news I couldn’t help but think about the many ways he created his personal brand. Up to this day no News Anchor has come close to his level of branding.
Bbale Francis was and still is the Golola Moses of News Anchoring. He created a brand that is undisputed in that when you mention his name, News Anchoring comes to your mind and when you mention News Anchoring Bbale Francis comes to your mind.
So I have come up with 8 branding strategies that we can learn from him and add into our own personal career branding strategies.
The first one is;
Seek to be yourself: Whether it is in the way you speak or the way you dress or the way you groom yourself, seek to be your natural self an original version of yourself. In that when people look for your product, hire you or buy your books, they are able to tell the difference of your product from other products.
Let your name define your career: Many News Anchors have come after Bbale Francis, some of them more handsome than him and some with more connections than him but none of them could and can come close to competing with Bbale Francis’s white hair and diction.
None of them is that memorable like Bbale Francis, in fact in the public domain it’s hard to refer to him as Bbale or Francis. His name is combined it’s either Bbale Francis or nothing. If you called him Bbale then the people you address lose translation of who you are talking about and they cannot attach him to the legendary Bbale Francis the News Anchor.
Show up: Half the time we switched on T.V (of course by then Uganda Television was the only Television station in Uganda) Bbale Francis was there at 8pm and 10pm doing his job.
In personal branding, showing up for all brand promotions and brand building is key to make people think about you in terms of that brand and also to relate to you and associate you with that brand therefore show up all the time.
Be true to your brand: Even when he stopped doing full time News Anchoring, Bbale Francis never tried presenting a T.V program or do something that was contrary to his brand (not that I know of) he instead became the News Editor at former UTV now UBC.
So if you are looking at creating a brand you have to remember you cannot sell yourself short just to make a few bucks. Stick to your brand and don’t let money influence your brand decisions.
Learn how to leverage brand association: In branding there is something called brand association, this can be a place you work at or a product you represent. Now in order for Bbale Francis to grow his brand and keep it in the minds of people, he remained at the same T.V station for 25 years. All he did was grow up in the ranks from News Anchor to News Editor.
That might have partly been because he knew that as a brand he was directly associated to UBC television station.
It is never too earlier to look old: When I was young I would bet Bbale Francis was some old guy who read the News on UTV but as I grew older the old Guy of UTV didn’t look any older than he was when I was still young.
In fact I realized he was dyeing his hair, so whatever area of your life you want to improve on in terms of maturity be it your hair, your mind or business go ahead and polish it up because it is never too early to grow old.
It is never too early to expand your brand in terms of business, distribution channels and production levels. It is never too early to hire employees and for some to get married and have children if the family guy is the kind of brand you are going for.
Protect your brand: Make sure that you are not in the tabloids for the wrong reasons. Up until today I had never seen Bbale Francis on an entertainment website but today the reason was because he is dead and nothing more.
I don’t know him personally to talk about his ethics and all that but what I know is I have never seen him in the news for the wrong reasons. So to grow your brand avoid being in the media for the wrong reasons.
Lastly be of service to your Country and to others.
Rest in Peace Bbale Francis, you’ll forever be remembered.