Updated: Dec 17, 2020
It use to be that creating a personal brand meant you had a bunch of business cards and if you were really creative, you would hire a Graphic Designer to create a logo for you. But, with the development of Social Media and an increasingly individualized society, the brand you build around yourself is perhaps the single most important way you can stand out in your spheres of influence. So here are 10 ways you can use to build your personal brand.
1. Fully Update Your Social Media Accounts
When branding yourself the first thing one must do is decide on a few things, one of these are to decide which social media account(s) you are going to focus on, and while doing that you should also delete any old accounts that you are no longer using. For the networks you will be using, make sure all of your information is complete and accurate. This will help you to remove any potential “questionable” content from years past that doesn’t have a positive effect on your professional image.
2. Identify Your Area of Expertise
This is a very important aspect of building your brand, Everyone's an expert at something - whether it’s Graphic Design, Content Marketing or being the Life Coach that you have always wanted to be. When doing this ask yourself the following questions: Do you know all that you need to know to branch out and build a brand within your niche? What type of content have you created that your followers have responded to most? Can you replicate this with other similar content? The more unique and engaging content you create on your chosen topic of expertise, the more your followers will start to think of you as a leader in your chosen field.
3. Find & Join Groups
Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn and twitter all offer thousands of opportunities to join groups focused on specific industries or topics. Use the search bar on each network to find groups that are linked to your specific area of expertise, then you’ll be able to share your insights and build authority around your personal brand. Social Media Groups Can Help You:
Keep you accountable
Expand your skills
Test your knowledge
Develop leadership skills
Discover new opportunities
If you simply join a group and don’t participate, you won’t gain any of the benefits listed above. On the other hand, showing that you’re responsive will help you build your personal brand in larger communities beyond your own.
4. Keep Your Brand Voice, Image & Tone Consistent
Sticking to your defined persona is important. You must also remain consistent with your ideas and the ways in which you present them so that you’re memorable and trustworthy. choosing the tone of voice that works best for your brand may entail some trial and error, but there are ways to determine the best fit for you. You need to further develop your ideas to support your approach. Following your brand guidelines will help you to control people’s perceptions of you and your brand.
5. Study Influencers
Connecting with and collaborating with influences is a great way to get your brand known, but it does take some time. You have to spend time developing relationships with influencers before they’ll see you as an expert. Once you’ve found the top influencers in your area, analyze their networks, posting habits and content to determine what you could be doing better. Notice how their followers respond to what they post, and learn best practices from their personal branding strategies and execution.
6. Create a brand logo & tagline
When you think about how to build a brand, visuals probably come to mind first. This step may be the one where you need help with execution. The most exciting (and arguably the most important piece) of the brand building process, is to create a brand logo and tagline for your company. You may DIY this process or you can take an advanced route and hire a designer to ensure consistency for any future application of the logo and associated color palette. A strong brand style guide will include the following things:
Logo size and placement
Typography and fonts
7. Hone your uniqueness.
Maybe you can do something highly useful that very few people can do. Well, that’s your unique quality, and you should tell your audience about it, but perhaps there are plenty of people who do what you do, and you’ll be competing for the same audience. Being able to demonstrate a point of uniqueness is your key to success in a competitive market. The most obvious point of uniqueness is to be the best. There are many ways of being the best. Find out which way plays to your strengths.
8. Discover your opportunity.
Passion is not enough. You might have a passion for designing or for what you do. But having a passion does not automatically translate to recognition and success. Instead of focusing on your passions, study the needs of the people in your circles. What are they trying to achieve? What are they struggling with? What are their frustrations? Think about how you could best help these people. Identify what you can bring to the table. Evaluate not just the skills and experience you’ve acquired but also the values that guide and inform you. You’ve identified your opportunity when you’ve found a significant need that you can serve, in a way that sets you apart from the competition. 9. Deliver on your value consistently and get testimonials.
Don't be the only one talking about your value. Have other people do it too. You do this by consistently delivering, and going above and beyond. This is ultimately how you can build a loyal network of brand ambassadors and get people to refer you organically. 10. Increase your value through education. You have opportunities to learn in hands-on environments with online courses, colleagues, mentors and offsite work events. Are you taking advantage of these opportunities to keep being among the best in your industry? What do you want people to know you for? This is where your personal brand comes in and why it matters.
Creating a personal brand on social media isn’t easy. It requires a lot of thought and research to do successfully. It is not about what you look like or where you live, it’s about what you stand for and what people should expect when they see your content. Think long-term and remember to take note of what’s working and not working and adjust as necessary.