Discover Personal Branding–Like Susan Boyle

More than 4,500 athletes, the Queen of England and 40,000 fans will all gather for tonight’s opening ceremony of the 20th Commonwealth Games in Glasgow city’s Celtic Park where Britain’s Got Talent‘s Susan Boyle will be one of the performers.

NOTE: this blog originally posted July 23, 2014

Remember when Susan’s audition shocked the world in 2009? As of today 154,079,130 people have viewed the youtube video of her amazing performance. I’ve personally watched it a number of times. In fact, I often use the video to illustrate the powerful affect of first impressions and the importance of branding your personal image. Susan had a dream to become known like Elaine Paige; now her fame exceeds her greatest expectations. When she walked onto that first stage the audience rolled their eyes and laughed at her; no one expected her to sing well at all. Now we all anticipate her performance with high expectations.

After her angelic voice was discovered, many image consultants wanted to give Susan a makeover. Why?

Because her appearance did not represent her well.

It was not that the girl was a mess–well, her hair and eyebrows needed some professional attention–but she was presentable. She was dressed up, wearing high heals and makeup. The problem was that she was out of character; she presented herself as a Romantic/Classic below the neck, and a Natural from the necklace up. Yet she is a Gamine. If this is confusing to you, it should be. I’ll put it another way: Susan’s branding was confused. She came across as a carefree, casual woman who was dressed like a sweet and sensitive, yet prim and proper beauty who spoke (and swung her hips) with boldness and courage (like a Gamine). No wonder no one had any confidence in her–she came across as a foolish phony simply because her image gave a mixed message.

No, we shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover.

But we do.

Right or wrong, quick judgment is a fact of life and if we want to make a good first impression we should stop trying to insist it shouldn’t happen. When you Know Who You Are, it’s easy to make sure the image you portray represents you well. Following the guidelines for your personal Img.ID is a vital part of personal branding and giving others confidence in you.


Catrina Welch is an inspirational author and speaker whose personal experience with overcoming rejection, betrayal and loss–as well as her expertise as a cosmetologist, image consultant and Biblical life-coach–is empowering women to BE and LET BE.

Her latest book, CONFIDENT BEAUTY: Reflecting the One Who Made You, with the Images in your Mirror and in your Soul, is now available in your favorite bookstores. Autographed copies of all her books are available on her website at



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