In today’s social media landscape, the concept of building a personal brand has become vital in nearly every industry. Even though it may seem intimidating, it is not that different from corporate branding except that you are the brand.
Thought leaders, consultants, and influencers are all looking to develop their personal brands in order to sell their services. Oprah Winfrey, Elon Musk, and Cristiano Ronaldo are just a few whose names are easily recognizable in their respective fields because of the personal brand they have built for themselves.
What is your personal brand and why do you need it?
In today’s rapidly evolving job market, just being another face in the crowd won’t land you your dream job. You have to separate yourself from the crowd. Your personal brand represents what you stand for – your unique characteristics, capabilities, and style.
Even when you aren’t consciously projecting your brand, people are perceiving you as an amalgamation of all the facets of your personality. This perception of you should align with your personal brand, which will signal to your next employer whether you are the right fit for the role or not.
While it seems daunting, building your personal brand isn’t rocket science. We at Simplified have organized the process for you!
Step 1: What’s your personal brand vision?
Where do you see yourself in the next 10, 20, or even 50 years? Are you working at your dream company or are you an executive at your current company? Choose the direction you want your life to go, and there you will find your personal brand vision.
Your personal brand’s vision should speak to your values, priorities, and passions!
Step 2: Find your target audience
Your personal brand’s aim is to sell to your target audience. If you’re looking for a job, you’re selling to an employer. If you’re starting a small business, you’re selling to your clients.
Your network is your net worth. While building your target audience it is important to also build a community of supporters and advocates with whom you can share and discuss your ideas.
Here are three types of people who you should focus on while building your target audience:
- People who will pay you.
- People who influence those who pay you.
- Your community of supporters.
Take some time to research what motivates each of these groups, and then create a game plan to engage with them and seize opportunities.
Step 3: Building online and offline assets
As with any brand, your personal brand’s worth is based on the quality of your ‘assets’. Your assets communicate your brand’s message and are the most important tool for self-branding. The most commonly used assets today are online: website, social media profiles, podcasts, and events you attend.
To build your portfolio of assets:
- You must identify which social platform works best for you; LinkedIn is a great place to start for any professional.
- Build a professional website showcasing your work. The first step here is to secure your domain name.
- Set up your website: About page, Project page, Contact page, SEO, etc.
- Develop a content marketing plan.
A great example is Charlie Marie’s website. They have a well-structured navigation flow and the landing page talks about who they are and what they can help you with.
Step 4: Connect with mentors
The key to growing your personal brand is continuing to learn from those around you. Mentors are a great learning asset. You can learn what strategies worked for them and what didn’t. Your mentors can be your colleagues, your boss, or even someone from your extended network.
When reaching out to someone and asking them to be mentor, remember the following:
- Research them well!
- Explain the reason you’re reaching out to them.
- Share your vision, intentions, and desires!
- Discuss your goals and what you want to work on.
With this guide, you will be well on your way to curating a unique personal brand. Remember, the most important part of any campaign is driving results. Don’t forget to monitor the growth and perception of your personal brand, to ensure that your message is being received properly. Good luck!