I admit it, I am a reality show junkie. Watching episodes of Survivor and Big Brother has become a part of my weekly routine. Many say that reality television rots the brain, and that may be true. However, I believe that successful reality T.V. stars can teach viewers some important lessons. I am referring to the people who don't leave you scratching your head wondering how they have a job. These are the people who you find yourself rooting for and relating to. They have portrayed themselves on the show in a way that positively reflects their personal brand. Their number of followers skyrockets and their faces are suddenly all over the media. These stars have crafted a successful social brand through a T.V. show.
Here are five lessons I have learned about how to brand yourself in a way that people will want to follow:
1. Find something that makes you unique
Discover something that makes you stand out. Anything that makes you memorable (in a good way). This could be a quirk, catchphrase, distinctive laugh, physical characteristic, hobby, or passion. On this past season of Big Brother, there were a few cast members who were known for certain things. Matt was known for his love of cereal and Josh was known for calling the houseguest meatballs. These are completely different characteristics but each thing made that person stand out in a house full of people.
2. People like vulnerability
In general, showing your vulnerable side to people can make someone feel closer to you. It can increase empathy, respect and comfort level. A famous Survivor contestant, Cirie Fields, knew how to do this well. She was a successful player on multiple seasons and a fan favorite because of her ability to relate to people, express her emotions in a raw way, and show her motherly side.
3. Genuine friendships are key
The show Catfish originally gained popularity because of its' unique content. However, I think this show maintains success because viewers enjoy watching Nev and Max go on adventures together. Their authentic friendship is easy to love and relate to. Viewers want to be their third wheel!
4. Embrace your sweet side
In general, people are drawn to those who are nice and pleasant to be around. Smiling is contagious. Amanda Stanton was a contestant on the Bachelor and two seasons of Bachelor in Paradise. She is a fan favorite because she embraced the persona the show created for her as the sweet, young mom. Her Instagram has over a million followers. Each of her daughters has over 31,000 followers on Instagram. Enough said.
5. Be consistent
When viewers tune into an episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians, they know what to expect. There will be high drama, fashion, and family. Although we know what each season will entail, each episode continues to get around 1.5 million views, according to Cosmopolitan.com. The Kardashians are consistent with what they offer, and viewers like that.
Interested in learning more about creating a personal brand? An article by Peter Gasca explains why having a personal brand is important and how to create it.