We all know that business branding is common practice but having your own personal brand is becoming more important than ever. Creating a solid personal brand can open up an array of professional opportunities. So what can you do to ensure that your personal brand makes you stand out from the rest of the crowd? Here are our tips for creating your own unique personal brand;
1. Determine your expertise
To build your own brand you must first determine your unique selling point or “USP”. What is it that makes you stand out from the crowd? To begin with try thinking about these points*;
- What three or four keywords describe your essential qualities quickly and clearly?
- What is your essence factor, the core of who you are? "I know I am in my element when __________."
- What is your authority factor, the knowledge that you hold and the skills that you possess? "People recognize my expertise in _________."
- What is your superstar factor, the qualities that set you apart? (This factor is how you get things done or what you're known for.) "People comment on my ability to ___________."
2. Find your target audience
In order to successfully build your personal brand, you need to define your target audience.
Ask yourself these two questions;
- Who will buy this product?
- Where do I want to sell this product?
Your personal brand won’t appeal to everyone so you need to ensure you are showcasing it to the right audience. For example if you are looking for a new job role then you need to be aiming for potential employers, or if you are employed and trying to build your brand within your current company then your target audience will be the people you work with.
3. Create a personal website
Not only is having your own website or blog is a great way to ensure that your name ranks on search engines but it also gives you a great platform to display your skills to potential employers. You can use sites such as GoDaddy.com to check if your name is available to purchase as a domain. If your name is quite common try adding your middle name or initial.
Platforms such as wordpress.com are great for creating websites or blogs and have a range of preset templates ready for you to use. You can also use sites such as About.me to use a central point of contact – make sure you include a link to your social platforms and a brief biography.
Networking is a great way of getting your personal brand out there in front of others and can help build lasting relationships with other ambitious and driven people that can help you grow professionally.
By regularly networking with others in your industry – whether it be a local business event or online in a LinkedIn group, you can help raise your profile among the local business community. Offering useful advice and tips will not only help strengthen your credibility but also help you stick in people’s minds.
5. Social Media
Whether you’re a fan of social media or not, it’s a vital tool in developing your personal brand. When your name is Googled chances are you will see your social media in your search results. If you find that you have a fairly common name try using your middle initial or middle name to make yourself stand out from the crowd.
Social networks such as LinkedIn and Twitter are great ways to stay in contact with other industry professionals. By regularly participating in LinkedIn groups and Twitter hash tag conversations you can engage with others in the business community and also gain more exposure within your industry.