How to Build a Personal Brand with Dani Evans

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Even before she won Cycle 6 of America’s Next Top Model and embarked on a now 15-year modeling career, Dani Evans always knew her future was in the modeling industry. When she sat down for a discussion on the Ghidotti Podcast, she described seeing her first runway show at age 12 and how she instantly started working from that point to establish and build a personal brand. 

“I was completely enamored by the art of it all,” Evans said. “I really studied the culture of models back then and that was when I truly fell in love with and identified with wanting to become a model.” 

Born and raised in Little Rock, Evans believed her best chance to reach her dream was by getting outside of Arkansas and in front of agents in bigger markets such as Atlanta or New York City. After graduating from Little Rock Central High School, Evans got the opportunity she was looking for with America’s Next Top Model, but it wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows. 

“It was very stressful and there were moments where I was thinking what am I doing and what have I gotten myself into,” said Evans. “I knew if I left, they would portray me as the girl that left in the middle of the night and I didn’t want that. So, I stayed and ended up winning, which I never thought would happen going into it.” 

Growing a Personal Brand Takes Hard Work

To those on the outside looking in, winning America’s Next Top Model was seemingly Evans’ golden ticket to a long and successful career as a model. However, even with the boost in fame and recognition, the Little Rock native still had to do the hard work to grow a personal brand and earn new opportunities within the industry. 

“Winning opened the door for me to get to New York City, but it definitely didn’t launch my career like most people think,” she said. “There was still a lot of me having to prove myself because reality TV and the modeling industry are two polar opposite ends. It’s a story filled with resilience and a lot of teary nights.” 

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Through her resiliency, Evans has been able to chart her own path in the Big Apple, achieving success in print work, on the runway and in commercials. She’s been featured in ELLE and Cover Magazine, walked the runway during New York Fashion Week and appeared in commercials for Covergirl and Target. 

“I definitely have longevity and that’s something that I always said I wanted, even before I became a professional model,” Evans said. “I feel like it’s played out differently than what I wanted, but I’m now starting to gain agency over my own career as opposed to being told what I can and cannot do.” 

Taking Control and Defining Your Brand Identity

For Evans, a key component of defining her personal brand identity and taking control of her own career was the launch of her company Monrowe, a unisex line of ready-to-wear hats. Named after her jazz musician grandfather, the brims blend trends from Jazz Era styles with classic Western shapes and contemporary elements for a fresh interpretation of a past vibe. 

“I often say Monrowe is my love child,” said Evans. “I eventually want to expand into other niche home items, but most importantly I want Monrowe to just reflect me as an individual, what I feel like my authentic code is and what I love.” 

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While it may seem that Evans has reached the pinnacle of modeling with nothing left to prove, she claims she’s just getting started. With a new phase of her life on the horizon, Evans is pushing forward with the same priorities of building a personal brand and navigating her own journey. 

“There’s a large road ahead of me and I feel like I’m literally standing in the doorway to it,” she said. “Anytime you leave your safety net or your comfort zone, you feel a lot of uncertainty and you begin to question yourself, but I know in my spirit that I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be.” 

To hear more of Dani Evans’ story and learn from other leaders, thinkers and innovators from across the country, subscribe to The Ghidotti Podcast and stay tuned for more stories, strategies and new ideas to set your organization apart.  

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We’d love to start a conversation with you about how we can create results for you. First step? Request your very own Guide to Ghidotti to learn more about our public relations and content marketing firm. This is a look inside our agency and will give you a good feel for who we are, what we do and how we partner with our clients to move the needle.

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Are You the Next Rock Star on the Ghidotti Team?

The Ghidotti Team is overflowing with full-fledged rock stars. Sure – we’re looking for the best, brightest, most creative, most organized. You get the picture. But what we REALLY want is someone who we can laugh with, depend on, learn from and do great work together. Learn more about who we’re looking for and what you can expect.

The Account Executive position involves growing and working independently with an emphasis on project management, client relations, media relations, digital/marketing, and/or lead generation among other skills.

Main Responsibilities:

  • Write client and internal correspondence effectively and with limited supervision.
  • Successfully plan and execute client activities such as media tours, digital and social campaigns, business missions and/or other special events.
  • Proactively identify story ideas and work with supervisor to develop.
  • Develop relevant blogs, e-newsletters and website content effectively and with limited supervision.
  • Effectively place client messages and spokespeople in target media outlets.
  • Successfully manage independently the execution of all client content calendars, which can include media relations pitch calendars, blogs, social content and paid media campaigns.
  • Exhibit competency and efficiency in drafting copy for client marketing materials and/or campaigns, such as website content, e-newsletters, collateral materials, paid media campaigns, etc.
  • As it relates to social/digital media, regularly suggest ideas, manage the planning, and comfortably execute campaigns on behalf of clients.
  • Assist in the management of interns, when applicable.
  • Develop an advanced level of design skills for InDesign or Photoshop, largely managing design-oriented tasks related to digital programs independently (depending on position/department).
  • Be proficient in WordPress.
  • Easily navigate agency platforms such as Cision, TVEyes, Sprout Social, Sprinklr.
  • Depending on the needs of the service area, responsibilities may extend beyond the items above as skillsets, client contracts and other extenuating circumstances dictate.

Experience in public relations, content marketing, digital media and influencer marketing is a must, but here is what we really want in a fellow Rock Star. Don’t let it scare ya – we just have high standards!

  • You anticipate every move of our clients and us.
  • You dream of ways to crack the Instagram gold mine in your sleep.
  • You are resourceful.
  • You are humble.
  • You know what needs to be done because it just comes naturally.
  • You are accurate. Every. Single. Time.
  • You take our vague guidance and get it done.
  • You are fast, yet error-free and awesome.
  • You care about every single, tiny, little detail.
  • You follow instructions.
  • You know you are extraawesome, and totally own that.
  • You meet deadlines even when you only have minutes to do it.
  • You can handle your own drama. Better yet, you don’t have any.
  • You have a life outside of work that you love and nurture.
  • You loathe micromanagers and don’t need one.
  • You love learning new things.
  • You sing karaoke and have “that song” when you really need to bring it.
  • You ask questions when appropriate. (Basically, you don’t ask us how to spell someone’s name because you know how to Google as if your life depends on it).
  • You treat our clients and your team members with respect.
  • You are funny.
  • You are caring.
  • You are a good friend and co-worker.
  • You are creative and think of winning marketing ideas in your sleep.
  • You love writing award entries. Like it’s your job!
  • You are resourceful. It’s so important that we’re mentioning it again.

Rock Star Environment

We strive to create a fun, engaging atmosphere where high fives, chicken minis, and celebrations are commonplace. We lift one another up, honor achievements and reward hard work.

  1. Professional Enrichment

    Whether instructor-led, web-based or sharing during Fireside Friday, we are always learning more!

  2. Community Engagement

    We love the state of Arkansas. Our team enjoys outings to locally-owned businesses and pride ourselves on community involvement. In addition, employees are often offered free tickets to community events to get out and enjoy life with friends and family.

  3. Team Building

    Quarterly adventures for the team!

  4. Winter Recess

    We shut this place down at the holidays so we can all rest, relax and reinvigorate for the new year.

  5. Summer Fridays

    We get an early jump on the weekend every Friday during the summer.

  6. Volunteer Time Off (VTO)

    Along with your PTO, you also get VTO to use to support your favorite charity or organization.

Does this describe you?

Apply for one of our open positions or just send us an email letting us know why you should be part of this Rock Star team. Email bethany@ghidotti.com.