Each month we undertake training on a myriad of topics to keep us ahead of the game. One of our recent (and ongoing) training modules is on Personal Branding. And it’s proving so popular even some of our friends and clients are also doing our programme. But what does personal branding actually mean?
You’ll see the term "personal brand" occurs in conversations across both business and social spectrums. The topic is almost unavoidable; you see professional journals, self-help magazines and blogs, all talk about creating a personal brand. The talk about personal brand is intended to draw attention to how you present yourself to the outside world – but why all the attention and buzz? For those who haven’t quite bought into the hype, let's start with the basics by answering the question, what is a brand?
Most people will answer the question what is a brand with a reference to some sort of commercial product – a brand name. If you did the same, next ask yourself what comes to mind when you think of that brand? Likely you will answer with descriptions, quality attributes, feelings, memories, etc. A brand is the combination of how the product describes itself and what YOU think about it.
What is most memorable, however, are the stories people tell each other about that brand. The owner of the brand has very little control over how you tell the story. The brand owner may have built the product and work to create an impression about that product, but ultimately, it's up to you to share a positive or negative brand story. Now let’s transition from a product brand to your personal brand. The very same analogy applies. Your personal brand is generally what people believe about you when you’re not in the room. So, how can you influence that story in a way that brings out the qualities and attributes for which you want to be known?
One of the key takeouts from our training that we recommend you do to start your journey of personal branding, is a tip from Jill Hauwiller, Leadership Refinery.
“Google Yourself To See What People Can Already Learn About You”. It's so important to know what clients and potential clients find when they look you up online. Google your own name and company and assess what comes up. From there, you can make a plan for what you need to do to increase your visibility, and where you need to spend your time and energy. Being intentional about this is a great way to get the interest and attention of your target audience.
The programme we are working through and developing has four keys sections to work through:
- Identify – What’s Your Story
- Build – Develop Your Story
- Market – Tell Your Story
- Nurture – Keep Your Story Fresh and Relevant
If you want us to send out workbook when it is finalised next month, contact us today.
In the world of social media, creating a personal brand isn’t easy. It requires a lot of thought and research to do successfully. It is not about what you look like or where you live, it’s about what you stand for and what people should expect when they see you’ve posted a new piece of content. Think long-term and remember to take note of what’s working and not working and adjust as necessary.
We’d love to hear how you approach your personal branding. Drop us an email today.