You couldn’t make it up

Brother Jie is a live-streaming star in China, who had 660,000 followers. He built his following by live-streaming himself handing out money to needy people – money which had been gained from virtual gifts sent by his followers.

He’d built a popular brand, and income, through his actions. The problem was, the actions he was showing people weren’t quite the full picture.

When further video emerged of him taking the money back from the needy people he’d been giving it to, his brand came crashing down around him. What had seemed a good news story actually turned out to be a con.

Building a brand by showing a veneer of what you think people will want to see can work, in the short term. People can be fooled by slick words and wilful deception. But only for a while.

In brother Jie’s case, the connectedness of the technology he used to build popularity became his downfall.

If you intend on shaping a brand that will last, then authenticity will always win out. Of course, you want to paint the best picture possible of what you do, but saying one thing and doing another thing entirely is going to end in tears.


Image © BBC



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