Thinking about your personal brand?
Branding is an integral part of business life but in recent times, there has been an increased level of focus on personal branding. If you are keen to progress your career and be recognised as a relevant figure in your industry, you will find that launching a personal brand plan is essential.
Personal branding works in the same way that a business would develop their brand:
You have to know who your audience is
You have to know how you want to present yourself
You have to know what your assets are with respect to your brand
You have to know what your liabilities are with respect to your brand
You have to know what you can control or impact on
This means that there is a lot of work involved with developing a personal brand plan, so why would people do it?
One major reason is that as consumers become jaded and over-exposed to advertisements and corporate brands, they are placing more trust and faith in individuals. People are looking towards people, not businesses, to do business with and they are looking to develop a connection and follow people based on reputation and identity.
Consumers are looking to take advice and buy from personal brands as opposed to companies, which means that businesses should be encouraging employees to develop their own branding and identity. This is an instance where an individual taking the lead and showing initiative with respect to their own business identity can actually have a positive impact on the business as well.
Personal branding helps opportunities find you
Personal branding has brought great success to individuals that believe in it One advocate of personal branding, Leonard Kim, knows the importance of writing and being seen. Amongst the many well-regarded sites and publications he provides content for is Inc. It is all a far cry from his situation of just a few years ago when he had failed in business and was forced to start all over again. This would be a daunting prospect for anyone but Kim had learned one strong lesson from his earlier failures and this was the importance of developing a personal brand.
When you create a personal brand, every single thing you do plays a part in developing a body of work and an identity that clients or potential employers can find. When you develop a personal brand, you create a demonstrable track record, indicating your value and merit. In an era where recommendations and testimonials are so important, developing a personal brand will give people an immediate appraisal of what you can deliver.
What you’d need to do to build your brand
If you are looking to develop your own personal brand, here are the steps you should follow:
Work out what your area of expertise in and begin operating within this niche
Write and publish – let people see what you know
Make sure your social media profiles are consistent and informative
Speak as industry or subject experts and present as much as you can
Develop a portfolio of relevant case studies
Widen your network, at various levels of organisations
This is a simplistic overview, but it is a pattern and plan that can be followed in any industry by anyone, of any age. In the modern digital era, it has never been simpler to create a blog and share your thoughts with the world. By being consistent and offering great insight into your industry, while aligning this content with a desire to connect and develop your ideas, you will find that you can create a personal brand that increases awareness of what you have to offer.