Building A Personal Brand
Some people think that personal branding is only for high-flying professionals like Bill Gates. This notion is myopic as each and every one of us is a brand. Personal branding is the process by which we market ourselves to others and like high-flyers or corporate brands, we can apply certain strategies to make ourselves more appealing to others. Here are 3 steps that you can take to enhance your personal brand:
Invest in self-discovery. Learn about yourself i.e. your passion, values, personal mission and unique qualities. Start by asking yourself what you want to be known for especially in terms of your niche whilst keeping your strengths in mind. Have you ever been called diligent or charismatic by your peers or coworkers? This description should be incorporated into your personal brand if you feel that it is an accurate depiction of who you are. Set aside some time to conduct some online research. With this new-found knowledge, write down your mission, vision and personal brand statement - position yourself in the marketplace.
Create a personal branding toolkit to highlight your brand in a consistent manner and enable others to easily view what you are about. This may consist of:
- Business Card: The card should contain your photograph, your personal brand statement (e.g. U.K. Strategic Brand Consultant), preferred contact information and company logo.
- Resume/Cover Letter: Customize the information on each document to fit a job that you wish to target.
- Portfolio: Compile work that you have done in the past as this would help convince others of your ability to have similar accomplishments in the future.
- Social network profiles: Create profiles on networks like Facebook and Twitter. These are great for advertising what you do, to search for jobs or just to network but brand yourself properly. Be sure to use appropriate language and photographs and take necessary precautions like the turning on of privacy options to prevent others from tagging you in undesirable photographs or videos.
- Distinctive wardrobe: This can be a way of differentiating yourself – select clothes that convey your personal style and bring out the best in you.
Communicate your brand by networking via social media and in the real world. Engage with others in the same field especially social influencers who are well-connected and anyone else who could spread the word about your expertise. Now that you have updated and accurately represented the brand “you”, you may also wish to monitor online feeds to ensure that your online image is positive.
Personal branding is an ongoing process that takes time and dedication. If you have not started, you could perhaps start with ROHEI’s Build Your Personal Brand workshop. Learn how to project a professional image, craft your own elevator pitch as well as improve your communication and networking skills.