Branding is Not Just for Corporations and Can be Personal
How to Build Your Personal Branding That Matters
Personal branding is developing a unique professional identity and coherent message that sets you apart from others either in your company or in your industry. It helps you be memorable in your niche and target market. Without personal branding, it’s almost impossible to succeed in business. Having a personal brand is a leadership requirement. It enables you to be a better and more authentic leader to create greater overall impact in your community.
I’ve been involved in the marketing of over a dozen product launches and new business startups. These startups range from global enterprise companies to small local businesses and online businesses. I also provided marketing for many companies, post mergers & acquisitions for their rebranding, relaunching and other refocusing solutions. Many of these businesses shared one common ingredient for success – a clear and strong brand.
Although I was a marketing professional for all these companies and business owners from 2001 to 2015, as well as in The Art Party, I failed to focus on my own personal branding until recently! Please do not make the same mistake.
I had visibility issues. I finally got my logo created in 2016 and I’m focusing on building my personal branding as a Marketing Coach. That is why my path has taken so long and I started in the marketing profession in 2001!
The Secret to Personal Branding That Matters
What finally helped me along my personal and business development has been hiring coaches and mentors. They can see what you can’t see. They can help you avoid major mistakes and shorten your path to success.
Failure can be more powerful than success. If you learn nothing more than to focus on building your personal brand, then this post has delivered its most important message for business success.
I already had many years of experience in doing marketing for other companies and people, but could not become successful until focusing on my personal brand.
Your Specialty – First, ask yourself what you want to be known for. You may want to show a broad range of skills, but don’t try to be all things to all people. That’s like applying for 100 jobs which leads to nothing. So decide exactly who you want to be, then start your self-promoting. As soon as you’re able to explain your specialty, both online and in person, the right opportunities will start finding you.
Your Website –You should also have your own website—ideally at yourfullname.com is where you can best control your message and allow others to search for your name to easily find you. Your website should give visitors a snapshot of what you do best.
Your Logo – Personal branding is more than just a logo. It is what you share with the outside world. This includes way you dress, the way you speak to customers and the quality of your work to communicate what is unique and special about you. Also tell your stories of failures—both in business and in your personal life to help your audience relate.
Your Photo – A professional headshot “immediately warms up any situation and helps build a trusting relationship with your audience.
Blogging – Your blog post captures your personality, humor or humility is far more likely to connect with the customer, get shared and be remembered.
Social Media – Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin can reach your potential clients and let your brand shine. By sharing content you feel are important, or recommendations for products you believe in, you curate and build authority in your community and industry.
Ebook – An ebook such as this one is a great way to establish credibility for your subject. Your ebook can be a source of rich anecdotes and help customer relate to you.
Speaking – There are a number of ways to increase your visibility with speaking: Meetups, presentations, short video blog posts, podcasts and interviewing other experts or customers.
Why is Personal Branding Such a Challenge For Most of Us?
Fear of public speaking is one of the reasons personal branding is a challenge. It takes practice in front of a group of people live in-person or online. With the latest technology, we’re now able to broadcast to thousands of people around the world. It’s both powerful and intimidating.
If you’re new to public speaking, start by giving presentations to several colleagues or in small team meetings. As you develop your skills, and as your confidence grows, you can speak at bigger events.
Also consider joining a speaking group such as Toastmasters, so that you can practice your skills regularly. Toastmasters is a nonprofit educational organization that operates clubs worldwide to help members improve their communication, public speaking, and leadership skills.
You can use Zoom, a web and video conferencing system or you can use Facebook Live with your mobile device to go live on Facebook if you have an audience there. Get the instructions on how to use and set up these livecasts below.