Being a Brand – Why, When and How?

Tee itsestäsi brändi - Katleena Kortesuo, WSOYpro Oy

Tee itsestäsi brändi: Asiantuntijaviestintä livenä ja verkossa – Katleena Kortesuo

This book is available only in Finnish. For all the non-Finnish readers, I can suggest looking into personal branding blogs. I follow this one myself:

Personal branding has been a hot topic in the blogosphere for several years. It is nowadays seen as an important part of building wealth, career or success in life overall.

There are few recent books written about it in Finnish – this is one of them by Katleena (She also has a great blog, called “Ei oo totta”). The book is focused on how to communicate personal brand both live and in the Internet.

The book has 9 chapters, which I would roughly group under three major topics:

  1. How to brand yourself –How to define the brand, what is needed for it, how should it look like?
  2. Building your image – How to build the external signs of an expert, how to communicate your professionalism to others?
  3. Good advice needed for working as an expert – How to sell yourself, how to make presentations/speeches/etc, how to get published?

There were two points that especially caught my eye over the others.

In the beginning of the book about branding yourself: The book makes an interesting and very important point. I could/should have started building my own brand already when I was a student. Katleena emphasizes that it is never too early or too late to start doing personal branding. You don’t need to be a CEO, politician or a best selling author, before you can start building your own brand.

You will find suggestions how to start, even if you are just a student with no experience and nothing to show of yet.

I really loved this part of the book. It really shows you that hey, better now than never!

In the chapter seven about writing your own book: I have been playing with an idea of writing my own book about business. My original idea was to write the book and then to search publishers or publish it myself. According to Katleena, this is a mistake.

As it turns out, you should never write a full manuscript for a non-fiction book. Instead you should initially approach the publishers with and idea and few short drafts and take it from there step by step. Katleena offers you a 14-bullet point guide to make this process easier.

The one thing it left me to wonder – does this advice apply also for people with no previous publishing experience? As I have never written a book before, I could imagine that I would be seen as somewhat of a wild card.

While I think the book is certainly worth a re-read, I would have hoped more focus on how to identify and define your own brand. For me, this is the most difficult part of personal branding. I am interested in so many things; it is not easy to pick an area to concentrate on.

I am looking forward to read more of Katleena’s books in the future. Her book “Avaa tästä” with advice for consultants seems especially interesting.

The book “Tee itsestäsi brändi” is available for example from