If you think branding is just for businesses, think again…
Personal branding is a great way to create a positive representation of your skills, interests, and career goals. Whether you use it to find a new job, grow your business, or simply expand your professional network – it’s become an essential part of building your professional reputation.
Not sure what it’s all about? Here’s everything you need to know about personal branding:
What is personal branding?
Personal branding is the ongoing process of marketing your attributes, personality and skills.
It represents who you are as an individual, and helps you to build a positive reputation for yourself – both personally and professionally.
Anyone can build a personal brand, and how you’re perceived is based on everything from what you post on social media, websites or any other online medium, to how you communicate with others and how you present yourself.
Where is my personal brand shown?
Your personal brand is prevalent in almost everything you do, whether it’s online or in person. Here are a few areas you could be making an impression:
- Social media
- Your CV and cover letter
- Endorsements or product promotions
- Conferences or events
Who sees my personal brand?
In short, everyone.
Whether its clients, employers, recruiters, or even just colleagues, family, or friends – your personal brand is visible to everyone you interact with.
Why do I need a personal brand?
Not only could a positive personal brand make you stand out to recruiters, it could also improve your prospects when it comes to establishing your own business, attracting potential clients, or simply gaining new contacts within your field.
Whether it’s through blogging about industry insights or connecting with the right people on social media, you’ll be demonstrating both knowledge and dedication to your chosen field. Not to mention build a sense of trust and dependency in your skills.
And with 43% of recruiters admitting to checking digital profiles often, creating an attractive personal brand has never been more important.
What should my personal brand incorporate?
In order to start building an effective personal brand, it’s vital to decide on the impression you want to give, what you’d like to achieve, and most importantly – what you have to offer.
Firstly, think about who you’d like to target, what kind of content they’re interested in, and how to connect with them most effectively.
Secondly, consider what you want your brand to say about you.
Here are a few elements you should cover:
- Your passions and interests
- Your education and work experience
- Your personality
- Your goals and aspirations
- Your values
- Your strengths and skills
Using the above, you’ll be able to craft a message that tells your audience who you are, what you do, and what makes you different. Not only should you include this message on your professional profiles, you should also incorporate it into everything you do.
Top tips for building a personal brand
Personal branding isn’t always easy, especially if you’re starting from scratch.
Here are a few top tips to help you get started:
- Keep learning. You need to make sure you’re continuously building on your knowledge – whether it’s through taking courses, listening to webinars, or even just regular reading.That way, you’ll be able to ensure the content you create, share, and interact with is relevant, helpful, and informative.
- Review your online presence. To make sure your online presence isn’t painting you in the wrong light, give your social media profiles frequent audits – removing or hiding any potentially inappropriate photos or posts. Googling yourself is also a great way to figure out how you’re appearing to others
- Get a personal website. Having your own website is an ideal way to condense all elements of your personal brand into one place. All you need is a short bio, along with links to your CV and social platforms. You can also keep any portfolio work or blog posts here.
- Be strategic. It’s important to develop an effective strategy for upholding your personal brand. Figure out how you want to be perceived, and use it to inform the nature of every status update, video, photo, or anything else you post online.
- Build your network. By making solid associations with your company, university, and colleagues, you’ll be able to boost your reputation – and open yourself up to opportunities within your network.
- Stay active. Aside from providing value with everything you share, it’s also key to maintain a consistent online presence. Creating your own blog posts that are relevant to your industry is great, but you can also share relevant articles from other sources. Just make sure you have enough to keep people coming back.
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