Valuable by Association to in Demand Brand

LinkedInHottestStartupBrandsIn brief: when the real strategy is to capture the most value by association, in demand brands make a ton of sense as preferred choice

You are the company you keep, literally.

A company's brand on someone's resume is a shortcut to a conversation on value.

Little it matters (often) whether you may have had a bigger job with greater financial accountability and results in a firm with a less known name.

The more recognized and celebrated the brand, the higher attention you command from prospective employers, recruiters, publishers, and even conference organizers.

The mere symbols of known brands next to job titles lend a halo of respect and consideration to the person who lists them as experience.

Brand is an interesting asset, because it is seen as more valuable than flow.

If there is one thing social networks have taught us, it is that displaying certain terms and symbols in association with our name and likeness increase our opportunity to be in demand, or at least the perception of value.

We are constantly exposed to other "people like us" doing it. Even when admittedly we may know the line between talking about topics smartly and having actually done the deeds gets blurry by several degrees of magnitude.

Known brand = known quantity

It is therefore quite natural to want to be seen as associated with words and images that we (and our peers) perceive as image enhancers.

A simple example: job titles. Although in a more mobile work environment and flatter organizations titles should matter less than competence and results, make no mistake — titles are still strong signals.

Cool title nobody else has intrigues and (sometimes) confuses, yet is quite exciting when completed by a brand name like Apple, or Google# and less likely in a company by the name of Nestle where a more senior sounding marketing title is more impressive.

Simple title at a cool company like Cloudera, or Dropbox signals you are in for an exciting ride and a member of an elite group of engineers who likely will take off to a sky-high valuation.

Behavior follows motivation

Which is why when LinkedIn announced its most "in demand" startups# in Silicon Valley based upon search data from the queries millions of professionals enter in its system daily the results tells us that engineers are following the market closely to realize the value of their talent/skills:

  • it's about data and storage — customer and prospective customer data is solely responsible for the flurry of mergers and acquisitions we continue to see in the tech industry
  • products are on the rise — thanks to signals like Kickstarter, Indiegogo, the Makers movement, etc.
  • pre-IPO is better — it seems engineers are familiar with quantum physics and see reality as what they measure/observe it to be#

Search behavior therefore follows motivation. 

Same for the most in demand brands globally: put one of these signals on your resume and you lift your personal brand value by association.

Labels are signals, too

All this means that when on LinkedIn, professionals search for the brand names and job titles that can net them the most advantage. Tabulated as observed behavior and tracked on the site. LinkedIn is likely pulling from qualitative information to add to its users motivation layer

Setting aside the question# of whether professionals deem the information they find on sites like Glassdoor reliable, it would be interesting to cross tabulate company reviews# on that site with LinkedIn searches.

It's part of due diligence for serious pros, online — through search engine queries — or offline — through word of mouth. However, final decisions may be based more on perception used to interpret the data and information we get back.

Pick Google as an example: serious burnout is likely, would not recommend to a friend (a strong signal to marketers attuned to Net Promoter Scores) are qualitative comments in an otherwise highly-stellar review.

Of course, based on your own internal story, you may decide to discard the advice of the more detailed review by former employee and embrace those of current employees. He/she took the time, you have no time to lose before you start that coveted job.

Having said all that, I'd be curious to find out how you go about finding in demand jobs and how you'd define "in demand".



Valeria is an experienced listener. She is also frequent speaker at
conferences and companies on a variety of topics. To book her for a
speaking engagement click here.

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