Book Summaries

Unlabel: Selling You Without Selling Out by Marc Ecko.

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In Unlabel: Selling You Without Selling Out, Entrepreneur Marc Ecko shares a blueprint for finding one’s authentic voice and the courage to defy conventional thinking. Marc writes about his numerous mistakes, triumphs and lessons learned on his path to building the urban fashion brand Eckō Unltd. and complex media.

You are a Brand

I am a brand, but I am not a label. My brand is Marc Eckō. You too are a brand. Whether you know it or not. Whether you like it or not. A brand is not skin-deep. Labels are skin-deep, but a brand—a true, authentic brand—is made of blood and bones, skin and organs. A brand has a heartbeat. The anatomy of a brand, in turn, is defined by its authenticity. And just like a doctor can’t describe the wonders of the human body in a pithy one-line description, a brand’s authenticity can’t be clearly defined in a Twitteresque 140 characters. Hard work is required to understand, grow, and nurture the anatomy of a brand. You can’t do it on the surface. You can’t slap on a “Brand Band-Aid.”

Brand. Create. Not mutually exclusive

Brands are often thought of negatively as the domain of advertising, but a personal brand can be a powerful tool. In times of success, it keeps you grounded. In times of crisis, it keeps you confident. In heightened moments of critical decision making, it hones your improvisational skills. But it doesn’t come easy. It takes real effort, imagination, and follow-through to create your authentic personal brand.

Unlabel is about resolving that tension. This requires a fundamental change in your assumptions. You must move from the mind-set of “I am a consumer and I want X” to “I am a producer and I create Y.” Create can be anything; you don’t have to be an artist or musician or inventor. Maybe you create code or create ads; or if you’re a dental hygienist, you create clean teeth. 

When you unlabel and create an authentic personal brand, you will broadcast yourself differently to the world. You will think of yourself more actively, not passively. You won’t just use the social network, you’ll become the social network. When you have a rock-solid sense of your own authentic personal brand, everything else—the graffiti you’re tagging, the mix tape you’re hawking, the company you’re launching, the next $1 billion platform you’re stewarding—will flow externally from the inside out; from your guts to the skin.

All the best in your quest to get better. Don’t Settle: Live with Passion.

Lifelong Learner | Entrepreneur | Digital Strategist at Reputiva LLC | Marathoner | Bibliophile |

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