Personal branding is essential when starting your own company. A personal brand is what your company, and yourself, will be known for. It is what people think of when they hear your name or company’s name. While it may be difficult to establish your personal brand when first starting out, there are a few things you can do to make your personal brand more memorable and effective.
First, be strategic with what you post onlineOnce you know how you want to be perceived, you can use your social media to your advantage. Every picture, tweet, and status update can help you to create and grow your personal brand. For instance, it would be to a yoga instructor’s benefit to post yoga poses on their Instagram page and it would be helpful for a video game designer to post screenshots of game play online. Both of these occurrences are beneficial because they give the consumer an idea of what your brand is all about with just one glance online. However, it would not be helpful for either if they posted about cooking or knitting because these posts would only mislead the consumer’s interpretation of what the brand is really about. If you are posting a lot of irrelevant information, this can hurt your personal brand by confusing the audience on how they should perceive you. Overall, make sure what you post on the internet reflects your brand in a simple and effective way.
Secondly, do not try to ‘reinvent’ yourself in an attempt to please the consumer
Be confident in your current skill sets, personal opinions and choices; it’ll get too confusing and frustrating to constantly try to market yourself as something you are not. People will not want to work with someone who they perceive as ‘fake’, or trying too hard. Confidence is key in growing a brand. So, slow down and think about what you really believe in, and what are you are trying to present. Then explain that to your audience, it’ll be better perceived if it seems genuine and not like you’re playing a part.
Next, never stop learning.
You’re a personal trainer? Learn more about personal training. Computer analyst? Learn more about computers. You need to continue to learn about your own craft in order to grow your own knowledge about your brand and business. There is always room for improvement in some aspect of yourself and your brand. If you feel you know everything there is to know about what you are marketing, then work on your customer relationships, or your online presence. Make sure whatever it is you are telling clients, or posting on your website is accurate and up-to-date. The last thing you need is a client calling to correct your mistakes.
The last step to finalizing your personal brand is: delivery.
If your tag line is ‘Master of Excel’ make sure you really know everything there is to know about Excel. This step ties back into the previous statement of ‘never stop learning’. There needs to be a point to everything you say and do in order to successfully explain your brand to others. That being said, a tagline can really help to sell your brand. If you want to be known as the ‘Master of Excel’ put that tagline on your website, social media sites, business cards, etc. It’ll give people something to remember in relation to your brand.
Building a personal brand doesn’t have to be overwhelming, it can be a fairly easy process once you know how you want to be perceived and what you are marketing.
I am Courtney McGuane, I am an undergrad at Loras College studying media studies and creative writing. Most of my time is spent cooking, drinking coffee and hiking with my best friend. I really love traveling and I hope to go to every continent someday.