Our class was lucky enough to have Valentí Sanjuan visit and speak to us last week. Valentí Sanjuan is a self made athlete, journalist, and entrepreneur. Most importantly, he is his own brand. His first job was at Catalunya radio where he worked for many years, but eventually left the company. After leaving his work there, he decided it was time to do something new. Valentí Sanjuan thinks that the only thing you need to make a name for yourself is a camera and audience, and this is just what he did. He put his social networking skills to use and decided to create a company called Gorden Seen and Visto Visto. He is now the creative director of both companies.
In addition to his business, he also has accomplished much athletically. He decided to participate in the Ironman of Lanzarote 2 months before the competition with no prior training.
He also participated in the marathon of Sables, crossed the desert in 7 days, and completed a total of 5 ironman competitions.
I describe Valentí Sanjuan as a dreamer. He had a bold idea and followed his heart. He held onto what he believed and took a leap of faith. He said to our class that he wanted to be one of the “best storytellers on youtube”. At first, he only had a few hundred viewers. He started social media platforms on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Google+ and Youtube. Despite his initial slow start, he continued to stick with his idea. Valiantí Sanjuan focused on interacting with youth in his show, and was able to capture this audience in a variety of brilliant ways. First, he asked questions in ways that wouldn’t be found on any other show. Also, he used language that some might find offensive, but helped him to connect to the younger generation. He also provides his listeners with sharable and valuable content which keeps them coming back to listen to him. Now, he has 2 million followers and has thousands of people tuning into his show weekly.
Another important topic we discussed in class is that Valentí Sanjuan is his own brand. He runs his own company, and gets to choose what he talks about. He has sponsors that he listens to (Sony, Estrella Beer, Nestle, Kit-Kat and Powerade to name a few) but essentially he has created his own brand and has become his own boss. When an individual is the brand instead of a company, social media plays a key factor in promoting it. An important aspect of personal branding is “Self packaging”, which not determined by the individual’s skills, but how they market themselves online. If someone is successful in creating an image for themselves on social media, then they are more likely to have more followers and create a greater impact on society.
Overall, Valentí Sanjuan is a perfect example of how determination and successful self branding can open many opportunities. This message is specifically important to share with youth who are finding their place in the world and thinking about their lifelong goals and how to put this into action.