You may not be aware, but you are a brand in your own self. Personal branding exists for everyone, whether they realise it or not. Whether you are a business owner, a community manager, social media specialist or an individual who wants to build up a recognisable CV, you can, and you have to build a personal brand – or it will build you (*ominous music plays).
So what exactly is a personal brand? A unique combination of skills, interests and experiences makes you who you are. The way you dress, speak, and the things you like to talk about and take an interest in are what make you, you. It’s the impact you have and how people feel and talk about you when you leave the room.
If you are a business owner, it’s essential to examine your personal brand. In a time anyone can look at anything on the internet, you need to create a positive impression. Rise above the noise by presenting a personal brand that stands out and creates an authentic connection with your target audience. This will set you apart in the long run. One of the easiest ways to do this is by identifying your positioning statement. This is where you recognise who you personally serve, what you do, how you do it and what impact you have on the people you do it for (or your why). This can then inform who you should be as a personal brand.
Why it’s important to have a personal brand
It establishes a way for people to find out about your business. If you think about it, having a personal brand will draw your target audience to you. If you have an interesting story, that’s how you get people to care about your business!
Take Richard Branson as an example. Undoubtedly, he is one of the most famous and successful men alive. Whether he’s literally out of this world exploring space through Virgin Galactic or pulling off a publicity stunt wearing a wedding dress, you will always see a brilliant man who was not afraid to stand out and poke a little fun at himself along the way.
He wasn’t just another stern-looking CEO who was always behind the scenes; he put himself out there. As a result, Virgin has become a giant in the business world. It’s easily one of the most recognisable brands on the planet, but a lot would say that Richard Branson is more recognisable than the huge portfolio of brands he owns. His face gives awareness to every single one of them!
You become an authority in your field. Some brands only ask customers to try out their products by sharing their features and benefits. Sure, this is a good approach, but that’s only scratching the surface. Whereas if you create your personal brand and share your expertise, that’s an excellent way for you to gather trust and credibility.
As a marketing guru, Neil does a fantastic job teaching people to market online by modelling his teachings. Neil is well-known as the king of blogging about online marketing. He even has a self-named YouTube channel! As the front man in his companies, he uses these platforms to provide in-depth, well-researched posts usually backed by his own experience. He uses his personal status and knowledge to build the businesses he has created.
Builds opportunities for networking. When you’ve established your personal brand firmly, it paves the way to building a solid network. Having a network increases awareness of your brand, so not only will you draw customers in, but you also attract people who are business professionals and thought leaders that are in the same space as you are. And that will lead to business growth and the opportunity to expand your horizons further. It’s a gift that keeps on giving.
There are many ways your business can grow through networking, but a notable approach would be using social media. Take your pick based on whom you’d like to reach: there’s Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn, to name a few. These platforms are easy to use, plus they’re free.
Having a personal brand requires a long-term commitment. It’s not something you build overnight, and the process may be challenging along the way. Developing it is a life-long project that continuously evolves. But as part of any hard work, you will always reap its benefits. When people start to know about you, you leave behind a strong impact and create meaningful relationships. The key to marketing is to become a brand people know, like and trust – That is a lot easier to achieve if you are a person people know, like and trust.
So you want to know where to start? Start with your purpose! Who are you serving, what, how, and why? Download our free “Personal Brand: Creating Your Positioning Statement” Workbook and start your personal branding journey today!
Need a hand? have questions? Shoot us a message, and let’s talk about it.