Branding Is Not Being Put In A Box, It's Breaking The Mold
December 3rd we'll see the musical "The Wiz Live!" come to life on NBC with a star-studded cast including "Orange is the New Balck" star Uzo Aduba, Stephanie Mills, Ne-Yo, Common, Mary J Blige, and Queen Latifah as the Wiz. You may also remember the equally star studded version from 1974 with Michael Jackson and Diana Ross. For a preview of the show, check out the trailer below.
From the shows cast I want to highlight Queen Latifah, a woman who's managed to have great success not only as an actress, but as a rapper, singer, Talk Show host, Cover Girl makeup spokesperson, you name it. The latest thing on her list of accomplishments is joining forces with Jermaine Dupree to executive produce a new series called "The Rap Game" where 5 young emerging hip-hop artists hope to be groomed into the next the next big rap star. The 8-episode series premiers on New Years day and will air Fridays at 10pm. Details on the contestants can be found on Billboard.com
Queen Latifah, aka Dana Owens, has managed to take a stage name, her moniker, and made it into a brand. She's done this while also managing to remain grounded, and I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that she never conformed to society but had a voice, something to say, and voiced it. Latifah's gained and maintained success by being nobody but herself.
When she decided to do the talk show, people drew the conclusion that she was trying to be like Oprah, but that didn't dissuade her. Regardless of what people had to say, she's always kept a positive frame of mind, even when after 2 seasons the show got canceled The Hollywood Reporter reveals.
Regardless of your passion and choice of career, you are branding yourself. Wether it's intentionally or not is entirely up to you. Branding yourself is not putting yourself in a box, quite the opposite actually. It's you telling the world who you are and what you stand for. Imagine if Nike's brand was limited to just shoes? Nike venturing into different markets hasn't diluted their brand one bit. It's still very clear what they stand for and what their message and story is. For a glimpse into Queen Latifah's story, check out the video below.
I hope this story encourages you that even if your first love is music, you are free to blossom into whomever and whatever it is that God has planned for you, because at the end of the day, you are your own brand, and only should define it.