Have you ever thought of yourself as a personal brand? When people hear your name, what do they think? Whatever it is that your name evokes in others is your personal brand.
Michael Jordan, Calvin Klein, Donna Karan, Tommy Hilfiger, Kate Spade, and Vera Wang are all people who have turned their names into recognizable brands. Donald Trump is another one. You may hate his naming buildings after himself, but he has definitely built his personal brand.
As Clark suggests, another word for branding is reputation. What do you want your reputation to be in the marketplace? Building your personal brand is one way that you build your credibility. When people see what you can do, they will learn to trust you more and more and your influence will grow. Here are my 12 best tips for maximizing your personal branding.
12 Tips for Personal Branding
- Have you thought about your brand attributes? If you haven’t, this is where to start. What is your niche? What is it that differentiates you from everyone else in your niche? What do you want people to think about when they think about your business? How do you want people to perceive you?
- Find out what your public persona is right now by googling yourself. Does your Google search lead with what you want to be known for? If not, create content that will shape your personal branding and put that content on your website and anywhere else you can on the internet.
- If you don’t have one yet, get a personal website. As you can see, I have a personal website and through it I communicate about the many different aspects of internet marketing. Your website will immediately expand your online presence. Your website will be a reflection of you, so make sure it has a professional appearance. Put your face on the front page so people know who they’re dealing with. This too is part of your branding.
- Include an About Me page on your personal website so people can get to know you better. Part of the work of your website is for people to know, like, and trust you. The more relevant information that you can provide as you tell your unique story, the better chance you have to get people to know, like, and trust you and to elevate your personal branding.
- If you haven’t done so, do a SWOT analysis. This is a survey of your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. For more on this, you can go here. Once you’ve identified your strengths, consider how you can build on them. Develop your strengths to strengthen your brand. This includes how you communicate your strengths.
- Build a following as you build your brand. Use social media to present yourself and use the opportunities that you are given to define yourself. By focusing on your strengths, putting your personality into your communication, and communicating the real you, you will develop a following of others who learn to like and trust you.
- Learn from others. How have others in your niche branded themselves? Learn from them, but don’t copy them. Your objective is to carve out your own place in your niche.
- Whatever your brand is, consistently deliver value in your own unique way. Don’t be a “me too” brand. Copycats generally don’t win, so be yourself, and put your best self out there.
- Offer value in everything you post. Whether it’s a blog post you’ve authored like this one, or something you grab from elsewhere, it all contributes to your personal branding. On your website, you control content and your content will create perceptions about you in the minds of others. So, make sure that everything you put on your personal website enhances your brand.
- The more venues that your name is seen, the faster your personal branding will expand. Tie social media to your branding efforts by using Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest, and other social media platforms to build your brand. Your pages and your comments on other pages can all contribute to your branding.
- Use thoughtful tweets, comments, and announcements to build a fan base for your brand. You can also build your brand through podcasts and videos. Any way that you can increase your online presence in a positive manner will grow your brand and your ability to monetize your brand.
- Make your email list your best tool in brand management. This could have been #1, but you’ve probably heard about this one before. A targeted. responsive email list can become the top asset for your business. Email your subscribers regularly, otherwise you will be quickly forgotten. Nurture your email list through providing valuable content.
Here’s a great infographic on personal branding from sestyle:
What would you add to my 12 tips or the infographic? I invite your comments and questions and your likes and shares.