With the advent of social media and online news, the influence of your personal brand can either accelerate your career or negatively impact it. That’s why it’s critical to take your personal brand seriously if you want others to take you seriously. To better enable you to create a personal brand that assists your career growth, here are tips to help. Learn the value of personal branding, how to define your own personal brand, and ways to market your brand for greater career success.
The Value of Personal Branding
Your personal brand can help you:
Your personal brand is your reputation
Similar to a lasting first impression, your personal brand is essentially the way others see you. If you’re like most people, you may be switching jobs and employers regularly. However, your personal brand is an asset you can take with you wherever you go. Keep your LinkedIn profile updated and evaluate your public social media profiles from the perspective of a potential employer, business partner, or client. Remember that everyone goes online nowadays to research other people. That’s why presenting your best self online is how you create a stellar personal brand that attracts great opportunities.
Chart your own direction
Your brand will help you to establish goals, priorities and action plans. Even while taking care of daily obligations, you’ll have a bigger picture in mind. I recommend creating a personal mission statement, to help you feel more fulfilled, while using your talents and skills to serve others. As an example, my personal mission is to inspire and empower people (and women, in particular). Whether I’m writing articles, consulting with business owners, or creating digital content for my audience, I think about how my actions reflect my mission statement.
Self promotion can go too far, so it’s easy to think that branding is somehow vain or self-absorbed. Don’t be “that” person who tags everyone in your own self-promotion posts on social media (that’s like the equivalent of spammy emails). But, instead, focus on ways you can provide value to other people through your online content. This will draw them to you more, rather than constantly being in their face. In reality, your personal brand shows the positive impact you can have on other people and the world around you.
Define Your Own Personal Brand
These tips will help you create an outstanding personal brand:
Take an inventory
Take a good look at yourself. Write out your strengths and weaknesses. Identify your passions. Think about what you’re good at and what you like to do. While creating your personal brand, ask yourself what characteristics would you want others to know about you? Are you funny? Are you a go-getter and goal-oriented? Are you passionate about motivating people or improving their lives? Whatever is authentic to you should be evident to others when they discover your personal brand.
Distinguish yourself from your colleagues
There are plenty of talented and dependable people in every field. Pinpoint your unique selling point. Maybe you’re a fashion boutique owner who loves giving styling advice to customers. This is an added-value that sets you apart from other shop owners.
Talk about benefits. Let your target audience know what you can do for them
Explain how you can serve others. For example, maybe your services can help clients boost profits by increasing sales or saving money? Or perhaps you’ll save them time or enhance their lives in some way?
Summarize your mission in 10 seconds or less
Be prepared to capture people’s attention quickly. Let them know what you do in 15 words or less. You can tell you’re on the right track when they ask for more details. Similar to an elevator pitch, getting clear about your mission statement and being able to communicate it succinctly will help others understand you better, faster, and easier.
Ask for feedback
Survey your family, friends, customers and colleagues to find out what they think of you and your abilities. Show your appreciation for constructive criticism so they’ll keep sharing it with you. The people who know us best can probably give us a list of pro’s and con’s about our character, personality, and behaviors. That’s why their feedback can be very valuable, since it can help you identify your strengths (while working on improving your weaknesses).
Review your personal mission statement every six months. Make new action plans so you’re always getting closer to your goals. Also, be sure to monitor any online content that is associated with your personal brand. For example, perhaps you posted a photo on Facebook years ago that made you look like a party animal. Well, if a prospective employer sees that now, it might influence their decision to hire you. That’s why evaluating, analyzing, and updating your social media profiles and online content is important to do.
Market Your Personal Brand
Use these strategies to expand your reach:
Increase your visibility
Post fresh content on your website or blog regularly. Stay active in social media. Look for opportunities to teach classes, give presentations, or write articles in your field. However, you can get your name out there (in a good way) can help to raise your personal brand. It also shows your expertise, talents, and adds credibility to your name.
Collect samples of positive feedback you get in the workplace. Assemble testimonials from happy clients and encourage them to make referrals. Word of mouth is often more effective and certainly cheaper than paid advertising.
Tell your success stories
Craft brief anecdotes about your accomplishments that showcase your skills and make you proud. Rehearse telling them so you sound natural.
Monetize your contribution
Numbers sound convincing. Try to quantify the value you can deliver. For example, if you’re pitching your IT services to a small business owner, discuss how much money they can save by signing up with you for monthly maintenance visits that reduce the risk of expensive repairs and downtime.
Put together a dream team
It’s difficult to go it alone. Cultivate your network. Help others to market their brand and they’re more likely to do the same for you. Team up with complementary partners. Exchange services like cooking meals for a friend who cuts your hair.
Branding used to be for cattle and big corporations, but now everyone is in on the act. Take charge of your personal brand to achieve more career success and guide your life in a direction that is meaningful for you.
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