Edwin Dearborn suggests that each of us should create a personal brand because “branding” is crucial in today’s business world. And, this personal branding requires a well-crafted effort on your part.
Your brand must reflect what is genuinely characteristic about you, and clearly distinguishes you from others. Being associated with you should represent value. This term is frequently abused by marketers, but the essence of any value is the importance people place on something or someone. How important you become to the lives of others is directly proportional to your value.
Brands are often defined by a logo or slogan such as American Express – “Don’t leave home without it.” Edwin says that “well known brands are not only distinctive, but they also generate a level of indispensability that is envious to any competitor, entrepreneur or start-up”.
Here are a few techniques to enhance your personal brand.
Your Unique Selling Proposition – Your (USP) or “elevator pitch” must be genuine and align with your core purpose and ethos. A fake USP will be sniffed out. Even good brands get attacked, but do not let them attack you for being disingenuous. Make your branding efforts as visible as possible on YouTube videos, LinkedIn, Instagram and other appropriate social media.
Establish Your Target Audience – Determine which audience(s) you want to influence, covert into long-term customers and committed fans. Identify and validate their ages, trusted media, geographic location, hobbies and interests. These factors will help to determine how to appeal to them, as well as how to best reach them.
Secure Your Name For Your Blog & Social Media – This is a priority so that when people search for your brand they find you, not another person that shares your same name. Securing your own name is a vital step in how you create a personal brand.
Set Up Your Blog – You need more than just a website. You need to establish and manage your own “Media Center.” As with a media company, establish yourself as a reputable, distinctive and indispensable brand that publishes valuable, insightful, relevant content and news. Your blog is a great tool for this.
Connect With The Right People – You can do this online as well as in person. By connecting with an ever growing audience of the right people, your message and branding will gain proper attention and traction. To help your branding and content to go viral, make and nurture great connections. Use email, social media, webinars, writing eBooks, putting on seminars, attend events, make influential friends and alliances. Don’t forget to ask others to share you content with their connections.
One thing that I believe that we can agree on is that, nothing speaks louder or more effectively than demonstrated results and competence. Publicize those accomplishments in a thoughtful and tasteful way.
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