We’re used to thinking about brands in relationship to companies and products – like Nike, Apple or McDonald’s. But nowadays, individuals are winning big by branding themselves. An easy way to define personal branding is educating people (your target employers or customers) about the unique value you have to offer them.
What might surprise you is that you already have a brand. Your brand is essentially your reputation – the beliefs or opinions that are generally held about someone. And if you’re not particularly pleased with it, the good news is that you can create and manage (NOT MANIPULATE) your personal brand for your own benefit.
Why should you build a personal brand?
Personal brands help establish credibility, increase your online influence, secure work and grow your career, generate sales, attract potential partnership conversations, attract employment opportunities and expand your professional network (Mikesaunders.com, 2018). Building a personal brand will help set you on a path for personal development, as it challenges you to find focus and drive your ability to take steps towards your vision of success.
Social media has been amazingly effective for personal branding. If you aspire to grow your influence, impact and event monetize it, building your personal branding online is a simple and successful way to do so.
Case in point: Gary Vaynerchuck
Not only did Gary leverage content creation on social media for his personal brand, but it was the seed which would grow his organisation of service brands with an ever-expanding variety of offerings.
Why I’m building my personal brand online
With a background in digital marketing, working online is my speciality. And as a service-based entrepreneur, it can be difficult to show the tangible value and benefits of my offering (speaking/training/teaching, consulting, creating and managing digital campaigns). I am my business – from networking to sales calls. Clients’ experience of my business is through my interaction with them. Personal branding is how I influence their perceptions and delight my clients.
Here are some foundation blocks to building your personal brand online
- Why you need a personal brand – Watch the video summary here
- Who you are is more important than what you have or do – Watch the short video with industry examples
- Brand yourself or be branded – Get clear on your interests and expertise
- Be yourself, everyone else is already taken – The world needs that special gift that only you have
- Attract and connect with your audience – Watch the video summary here
- Getting clear on your brand points you in the direction of who your audience is
- Your brand is created for your audience and to meet their needs
- Create an avatar (a fictional character of your ideal audience) to know where to find them and how to speak to them
- Free tools to build your brand online – Watch the video summary here
- I use www.about.me/wmwaniki to create an online business card and use it in my email signature
- Create a seamless profile on all your social media accounts with the same profile picture and a tagline to be easily recognised.
- I use www.canva.com to create free beautiful images for my social media posts
- Stick to one social media platform until you’re comfortable before moving to another. Start with the one you enjoy. Use social media insights to see what content is getting engagement.
- Leverage social media to build your brand online – Watch the video summary here
Who is it for – influential millennials and budding solopreneurs
How it works:
- Clean out your social media feed From GIGO to VIVO – Value in to value out
- Get clarity on which social media platform to use based on your goal and audience and how to use the platform as it is intended.
- How to build your social media currency (Know, Like & Trust factor) by creating content that connects and collects
- How to create a month’s worth of content in 1 day