Personal branding requires you to find a signature image, a unique voice, and a recognizable standard that your clients or future employers can recognize.
Wikipedia describes a brand as a name, term, design or other feature that distinguishes one seller’s product from those of another.
A logo often represents a specific brand, as do many trade names. Brand owners manage their brands carefully to create shareholder value and customer recognition. What do you think of when you see the golden arches or a swoosh?
Branding on a business-level is common, but today companies and organizations aren’t alone in the need for solid branding. The art of building a unique brand around yourself as an individual is just as important.
Just as with a company brand, personal branding requires you to find a signature image, a unique voice, and a recognizable standard that your readers, clients, or future employers can recognize.
What do you wish for people to associate with you when they think of your name? Creating your personal brand is about making your mark by being yourself — your best self. Think of your personal brand as your calling card — your unique promise of value. It’s what you’re known for and how people experience you.
Once you understand how you wish your brand to be perceived, you can start to be much more strategic about your personal brand.
A strong personal brand can yield tremendous ROI whether you are working with an organization or leading one.
Audit Your Online Presence
You can’t mold perception without first understanding the current status. Google yourself and set up alerts for your name on a regular basis.
Have a fairly common name? Consider using your middle initial or middle name to differentiate.
You’ll also need to audit your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vine or any other social media networks to clean up those party pics from college.
Once it’s online, it’s hard to get rid of, but using a program like SimpleWash help you clean up those posts and pics that no longer fit your personal brand.
Create a Personal Website
Having a personal website for yourself is one of the best ways to rank for your name on the search engines. The domain name should be your full name. But it doesn’t need to be robust.
Using a website like About Me will provide a simple page with your resume, links to your social platforms, and a brief bio. You can always expand on the website with time. Or create a more robust version using WordPress.
LinkedIn, LinkedIn, LinkedIn
You just have to have it. Not only is it necessary to have a LinkedIn profile, but it’s also a great blogging tool to share personal knowledge about your area of expertise. If you’re a newbie, start with something simple like sharing links, congratulating people when they get new jobs or liking a comment or post made by someone else in your network.
Find ways to add value to your audience by creating or curating content that’s in line with your brand. We just talked about getting a personal website and LinkedIn. But those things can’t just sit there.
Start blogging on a weekly basis. Get a Twitter so you’ll have a tool to share your blog posts, retweet other ideas and bring people back to your website and LinkedIn profile. This way, you’ll start establishing yourself as an authority.
Associate with Other Strong Brands
Your personal brand is strengthened or weakened by your connection to other brands. Instead of posting party pics, leverage your social media to connect with others.
Follow companies, colleagues, former classmates and reputable friends. Consider submitting a guest post to the company blog or look at other digital assets you can connect to your brand.
A strong personal brand is dependent on a strong narrative. In other words, what’s your story? Take a second to think of well-known folks you know who have a strong personal brand. Mark Cuban, Arianna Huffington, Sheryl Sandberg – they all have a very clear story and a consistent brand. If you have multiple passions or areas of interest, a narrative becomes even more crucial so there can be
Mark Cuban, Arianna Huffington, Sheryl Sandberg — they all have a very clear story and a consistent brand. If you have multiple passions or areas of interest, a narrative becomes even more crucial so there can be
If you have multiple passions or areas of interest, a narrative becomes even more crucial so there can be a unified theme.
Most importantly, remember that a strong personal brand should be ubiquitous and ever-evolving.
To help get your personal brand on the right track, download our free handy checklist.