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943: Peter Wilken – Unveiling the Power of Brand DNA

In this episode of The Self-Employed Life, I had the pleasure of speaking with Peter Wilkin, a branding expert, about the importance of understanding personal brand DNA. Peter shared valuable insights on the components of brand DNA, including role, beliefs, promise, benefits, spirit, and icons. He emphasized the significance of brand DNA as a compass that guides individuals through turbulent times in their self-employed businesses. Peter's concept of brand DNA as a life jacket in rough seas resonated with me, highlighting the importance of anchoring oneself in personal values and beliefs. Overall, the episode provided a compelling perspective on the role of brand DNA in navigating the complexities of personal branding and business success.


Peter, a veteran of the advertising golden era, led agencies for Ogilvy, Leo Burnett, and BBDO across global hubs. As Head of BBDO Asia Pacific, he oversaw 14 markets, shaping iconic brands like Coca-Cola and IBM. Now, through Dolphin Brand Strategy, he guides clients in brand and strategic planning, sharing insights from his book "Dim Sum Strategy" and speaking on unleashing creative thinking for impactful change. A family man based in Vancouver, Peter enjoys globetrotting, sports, and wildlife, especially otters, tigers, and, of course, dolphins.


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Everything you need can all be found at 


Peter Wilken, thank you so much for being here!

Remember, you might be in business FOR yourself but you are not in business BY yourself.

Be your best self. Be proud and keep changing the world.

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Contact Jeffrey –

Valuable Resources–

  • The Self-Employed Business Institute You know you're really good at what you do. You're talented, you have a skill set. The problem is you're probably in a field where there is no business education. This is common amongst self-employed people! And, there's no business education out there for us! You also know that being self-employed is unique and you need better strategies, coaching, support, and accountability. The Self-Employed Business Institute, a five-month online education is exactly what you need. Check it out!

  • Take The Self-Employed Assessment! Ever feel like you're all over the place? Or frustrated it seems like you have everything you need for your business success but it's somehow not coming together? Take this short quiz to discover the biggest hidden gap that’s keeping you from having a thriving Self-Employed Ecosystem. You’ll find out what part of your business needs attention and you'll also get a few laser-focused insights to help you start closing that gap.

  • Have Your Website Brand Message Reviewed! Is your website speaking the right LINGO of your ideal customers? Having reviewed hundreds of websites, I can tell you 98% of websites are not. Fill out the simple LINGO Review application and I'll take a look at your website. I'll email you a few suggestions to improve your brand message to attract more of your ideal customers. Fill out the application today and let's get your business speaking the right LINGO!

Host Jeffrey Shaw is a Small Business Consultant, Brand Management Consultant, Business Coach for Entrepreneurs, Keynote Speaker, TEDx Speaker and author of LINGO and The Self Employed Life (May 2021). Supporting self-employed business owners with business and personal development strategies they need to create sustainable success.


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