It’s just not enough to be brilliant. People must know and remember that you are. Let’s face it, walking around feeling complacent and entitled because you know you’re brilliant is not a viable strategy, right?  So if you want to be known, remembered and recognized, it’s critical you build a brand that not only positions you as brilliant – but as irresistible and indispensable, too. How do you do that? You create a potent brand.

Potency defined

OK. Let’s start with a definition of potency here just to get us all on the same page. The word ‘potent’ means (i) power; authority, (ii) efficacy; effectiveness; strength; and (iii) the capacity to be, become, or develop; one’s potentiality; and  (iv) a person or thing exerting power or influence.

In other words, the more potent your brand, the more powerful, authoritative, effective, strong and influential you are. The best part? A potent brand makes it easier for your world, so to speak, find you, get to know you and then, want to engage with you (work with you, employ you, salute you, etc.) You get the idea.

So how do you start building a potent brand? The world is moving at a staggeringly fast pace. It’s never been more important to get a grip on your brand’s core values, what it stands for and why it’s meaningful.

It starts with asking questions. Take a look at the six clues below plus questions. See how willing you are to give your brand a leg up, as they say. It’s likely to turbo charge your thinking. It’ll then, hopefully get you moving forward  – and building a brand with potency.

Moving forward with six clues

Be Chief Influential Officer of your Brand

• Are you poised to become the Go-To-Resource within your area of expertise Y/N?

• How willing are you when it comes to getting out of your comfort zone Y/N?

• Are you ready to stake out your territory in a more authoritative way Y/N?

• Is your Brand Pulse showing strong, pumping and vital signs? (the last time you checked?) Y/N?

• Would you describe your brand as robust and hardy Y/N?

• Is the world around you noticing you’re becoming a center of influence Y/N?

2º Set the Right Tone for your Brand

• Are you clear about the intention behind your brand Y/N?

• Are you really communicating you are who you say you are Y/N?

• Is your brand’s voice clear, authentic and aligned Y/N?

• Are you regularly minding your brand’s behavior Y/N?

• Is your brand’s attitude welcoming, empathetic and transparent Y/N?

3º Start Seeing your Brand as your Platform

• How committed  are you to showing up in your brand Y/N?

• Would you give yourself a high score when it comes to inspiring your world Y/N?

• Do you actually think about changing the world Y/N?

• Are you at ease speaking confidently from your brand platform Y/N?

4º Pay Close Attention to your Brand’s Emotional IQ

• Would you say your brand lands a high score when it comes to empathy Y/N?

• Are you aware the world around you has feelings about you and your brand Y/N?

• Do you think you might be keeping your world at arm’s length Y/N?

• Do you focus on actually creating strong emotional connections in your communication Y/N?

5º Focus on Being 120% Authentic

• Are you spending much effort on creating a consistent brand Y/N?

• Do you know exactly what a congruent brand looks like (let alone feels like?) Y/N?

• Would the world around you give you a high score as an authentic brand builder Y/N?

• Do you know that feeling when your brand is out of alignment Y/N?

(You always know when the wheels of your car are out of alignment, right?)

6º Face Facts: The Money’s in the Brand

Note:  Potent brands are profitable. The definition of business, after all, is about profit, purchases, commerce and volume of trade.

• So are you paying enough attention to what your world really needs the most Y/N?

• Does your brand consistently deliver what your world is craving Y/N?

• Are you willing to let your brand go to work for you Y/N?

OK. How potent is your brand feeling right now? P.S. Don’t ever forget that building your brand is always a work in progress. (That’s the good news Y/N?)


Mary van de Wiel is best known for her global expertise when it comes to coaxing out the real power in brands to dramatically increase sales. Van is founder and Creative Director of She is the author of soon-to-be-published Dead Brand Walking: A Brand Therapist’s Viewpoint. Follow her on Twitter