You have probably heard of branding in relation to business branding. But what is personal branding and is it really necessary? Personal branding is all about you. It’s how you present yourself to the outside world and how the outside world perceives you. Your personal branding should showcase your skills and experience as well as your personality, which is the most unique thing about you. If done correctly, personal branding has the power to shine a positive spotlight over you. It can help you stand out from the crowd and give you the professional boost you need.
But why is personal branding important?
In today’s world, where everything is shared and discussed on social media, it’s more important than ever to mould your public persona in ways that work for you. Personal branding allows you to communicate exactly who you are and what it is that you do. Ignoring your personal branding may lead to you unnecessarily missing out on opportunities relating to employment, partnerships and/or even networking. According to CareerBuilder (link here), more than half of employers won’t hire potential candidates without some sort of online presence.
The good news about personal branding is that, for the most part, you can be in control of it. You have the ability to mould your image to whatever it is you are wanting to project to the public. It does take time and patience. Always remember that you are leaving an online footprint that might be tricky to get rid of in the future, so always be mindful of what you decide to share.
How to get started on your personal branding journey
Developing your personal brand is hard work but essential to your online presence. Luckily, due to the increase in social media platforms, it has never been easier to get started. Here are some important tips to remember when considering your personal branding journey.
The difference between branding a business and branding yourself as a person is that it is easier for people to build trust with actual human beings than with other businesses. This means it is easier for authentic relationships to be built via personal branding. By sharing stories, you can better build connections and allow others to create bonds through similarities they have or have experienced. Be authentic by always matching your actions to the way you are branding yourself, and most importantly, aim to provide others with some sort of value.
Have a plan
Note down what it is you aim to achieve. Now decide on how you plan to get there. Be aware of what your strengths are and use them to your advantage! Be proud of the skills and experience that set you apart from the rest and let this knowledge guide you. Believe in yourself but remember that it is equally important to be aware of your weaknesses to allow for further growth.
Consistency is key
Be sure to have a presence and to post consistently across all social media platforms. Keep the theme unified as this establishes your personal branding amongst a variety of audiences. You will likely find that different platforms will bring you different opportunities and have different benefits, so it’s important to be a part of them all.
Remember, it doesn’t happen overnight! So be patient and most importantly, have fun with it.