In the digital age when everything from cars to cats has an Instagram account, a Facebook page and even a Twitter handle, it has become obvious that branding isn’t just for businesses anymore. Branding, it seems, is necessary for anyone (or anything) with a public presence.
Carefully cultivating your personal brand is important. It allows you to control your narrative both visually and verbally, which is critical in a time when first impressions are often in the form of a Google search. In fact, in a survey last year, it was found that a whopping 70 percent of employers use social media to screen candidates during the hiring process.
When you consider that big companies put a hefty amount of money and time behind establishing a brand, you may think you don’t have what it takes to create your own. But really, it’s a lot easier than you think. Simply put, your personal brand is what you do, how you do it and why. Which means, it’s nearly impossible to fake. And building your personal brand will do for you what it does for big businesses: make you stand out from the crowd.
We’ve rounded up a few easy steps that will assist you with establishing your personal brand and getting it up and running.
Push past your passions to dig a bit deeper. What are your strengths? Values? What is your expertise? But keep in mind that (ironically) building your personal brand isn’t actually all about you. Think about your friends, family and coworkers – all the individuals in your circle. What are their needs and wants? What frustrates them? More importantly, how can YOU help, and how is it different from anyone else?
Know Your Audience
From their jobs to what brings them joy, study your audience. Where are they located? What makes them happy? But even more, get to know what they value and the challenges they face.
Once you identify them, reach out to connect to further explore what makes them tick. Begin creating content that aligns with each of these points to capture their eyes. Perhaps it’s an article with valuable tips on how to save time or money. Or maybe it’s simply a tell-all about your personal approach to an issue (anything from a design challenge to a parenting problem).
Know Your Message
Make it short. Make it simple. Make it strong. These things will make it memorable.
Position yourself as a person familiar with your audience’s interests, tastes and outlooks. Transfer this message across all your profiles – personal and professional. Most importantly, embody it in nearly everything you do. Doing this will help your message gain momentum and further make your mission clear.
Stay on Mark
Now that you have these three pillars in place, make sure you stay consistent with both your content and your cadence. Doing this will not only help you retain your audience (while also attracting new followers), but it will also keep you sharp and skilled, ready for interactions – on and offline.
Want to learn how we can help you build an authentic and strong personal brand? Send us a note!