9 Practical Tips For Building Your Personal Brand
Do you consider yourself a branding nerd? Well, you are not alone.
The concept of developing and refining your personal brand is something that many people aren’t aware of, but it’s an essential component in the business world.
Without it, you’re just another faceless entity among thousands out there vying for attention and recognition.
With it, you become your own unique voice in the marketplace with all the potential to make huge waves – or at least garner enough notice so as not to be overlooked.
What is a Personal Brand?
A personal brand is a culmination of your values, personality traits, goals and aspirations that people can identify with.
It helps you to stand out from the crowd by setting yourself apart as an individual who has something worthwhile to say or sell.
If done correctly, it gives you instant credibility in your niche. Let’s face it – if someone doesn’t know who you are, they’re not going to take the time to find out. But if they hear your name and immediately know what you stand for, they’re more likely to be interested in what you have to offer.
When it comes to building a brand strategy, there are quite a factors to focus on. Just like in corporate branding or marketing, it’s important to define your goals from the beginning. This way, you can easily figure out which print or digital mediums to utilize and reach out to the target audience effectively.
How Do I Develop My Personal Brand?
There’s no one-size-fits-all answer when it comes to developing your personal brand, but there are a few essential steps that you can take to get started:
1. Understand Who You Really Are
Look, we all have different facets to our personality and it’s important to understand which ones are the most dominant. What are your core values, what motivates you, what do you enjoy doing most?
Once you have a good understanding of who you are, it becomes much easier to communicate that through your branding efforts.
It can also help you highlight your strengths or weaknesses so that you can identify your niche and establish your brand slowly.
Once people are able to connect with it and recognize the name, you can expand or explore other subjects as well. The key is to get an idea of what you can work with initially as that can help you gain trust and establish credibility.
2. Know Your Audience
This is one of the most important things that you can do to ensure business success with your personal branding efforts.
One thing you need to know is that people are different and they expect something different from the brands they choose to support.
You need to know exactly who you’re targeting so as not waste time trying to appeal to a demographic outside of your core audience or miss out on opportunities because you didn’t reach out in just the right way.
Once you are familiar with who you want to focus on, it also becomes easier to locate them. So for example, your audience mainly consists of a younger demographic between 18 to 35 years of age.
When you have an insight into their preferences or interests, you can narrow down ways of communicating with them. While it might be a good idea to get the attention of your target audience on social media channels such as Instagram or Twitter, you can also create a Youtube channel or start a blog.
Take the example of Chiara Ferragni who began her career with a fashion blog called, The Blonde Salad. Over time, she became a recognized name in the industry and grew her brand on Instagram and Facebook. Presently, Ferragni has a following of millions as well as a physical store in Milan.
3. Make Your Brand Stand Out
There is no shortage of competitors in any given niche, which means that if yours isn’t unique enough (or at least interesting enough), chances are good that someone else will take up all of the attention.
Make sure that you’re doing something that no one else is so that you can be the stand-out brand. Always send out quality and valuable content to your audience, and ensure your branding elements stick out from the noise.
For instance, if you are an accountant, make sure your official colors, icons, and logo reflect who you are. In such instances an accountant logo generator tool ensures you get the best design for your brand.
It’s also important to make sure that you are offering value to people. Otherwise, you may not be able hold their attention for a long time.
Take the example of Neil Patel or Brian Dean here. Both of them have managed to become recognized names in the field of digital marketing in a short span. In fact, Patel is also the face of his agency and has quite a large following.
By sharing his personal experiences and solid facts, he has established his credibility in various sectors of online marketing such as social media and optimization.
4. Be Consistent
Once you’ve put in the time and effort to develop a personal brand, it’s important that you stick with it. Be consistent with your branding across all channels – from your website and social media profiles to the way you dress and speak.
This will ensure that people always know what to expect from you and they’ll be more likely to come back for more. Consistency in branding can also increase visibility and make it easier for people to recall or remember the name.
According to a study, those brands which have clear guidelines and maintain it over a span of time are likely to be three to four times more visible than others.
So, by being consistent with your tone of voice, imagery and content, you can gain recognition quickly and create a positive perception about the brand as well.
5. Be Authentic
One of the biggest mistakes people make when it comes to branding is trying to be someone they’re not.
The key elements of a successful business is being true to yourself and your unique voice. Its okay to emulate other successful brands, but make sure that the essence of who you are shines through in everything you do.
Figure out what it is that helps you stand out from others and focus on highlighting the particular trait.
Being authentic is the most important thing when it comes to developing your personal brand. You don’t want people to see you as a two-faced phony, so try not to be afraid of what others might think about how you present yourself.
It’s okay if they disagree with parts of your image or message. Just make sure that you’re putting out something that is true and genuine first and foremost in order for them to respect it.
Given the rising number of content creators or influencers, it has become even more important for people to stand out in the crowd.
You need to make sure that your personal brand is relatable and gives the audience an insight into your life and personality. This is why authenticity is critically important and can help gain the trust of followers quickly.
Take the example of Gary Vaynerchuk, the entrepreneur and social media personality. He has built a recognizable personal brand and become a bestselling author by sharing being authentic across all channels.
In his Youtube videos, he engages people by sharing his personal experiences and background. Vaynerchuk is known for being real with his responses and maintaining transparency in communication.
6. Research The Niche Or Industry
This is a highly useful tip that can help you achieve success in your industry or niche and explore different ones as well. Before you start building your brand or putting out content, it is a good idea to conduct extensive research on what people are looking for. Look for experts or leaders who are established within the niche and browse through their blogs or social media accounts.
You would figure out how to effectively connect with the audience and make an impact in a short span of time.
Sometimes, people get inspiration from known personalities in the industry and utilize them to build their personal brand. While you don’t have to follow or imitate somebody else, it certainly helps to know the popular trend or subjects at any given time.
7. Start Networking
Now, this might be a bit challenging in the early days but it can help you gain visibility and followers too. Engage with people in your field and reach out to them for advice or guidance. It is important to build connections from the beginning as that can help increase your influence and establish authority in a particular niche. You can start building a network by participating in community events, webinars or engaging with people on social media networks.
Make sure that your content has value and unique as people usually promote content or share those blogs and videos that are engaging and have a strong message. Other than that, you can also look for mentors in the niche and gain from their expertise. Try to build lasting relationships which boost your credibility and help your personal brand become more visible.
8. Leverage Social Media Platforms
If you are not focusing on your social media presence, it could create a few challenges later on. In this age, it is the easiest way to reach out to the audience and attract followers.
Once you are aware of where your audience is, create a strategy that gets the attention of people there. If you want to focus on Instagram, post short videos or high quality visuals that convey your brand values.
If your niche is in finance, you can leverage Twitter or LinkedIn to share valuable insights with the audience.
Social media platforms also allow you to engage or respond to people quickly and answer any questions they might have. You could also promote your blogs on platforms such as Facebook and create awareness.
9. Get Feedback
It’s important to get feedback from others on how well your personal brand is resonating with them. Seek out honest opinions from people you trust and make changes accordingly. This is an ongoing process that should be tweaked and adjusted as you go along.
Gathering feedback is a great. It helps you determine whether your personal brand is heading in the right direction or not. It also gives you an opportunity to make changes and adjustments as needed before it’s too late. While you can always reach out to your followers for honest feedback, it good to start with friends and family. Their insight may help you help you improve your content in the beginning before putting it out for your followers.
Developing a personal brand can be a lot of work, but it’s definitely worth it in the end. It can help you become more successful in your career and life overall. By applying some of the great tips mentioned above, you can gain recognition and establish a name within your industry. So take the time to do it right and you’ll be glad you did!