Personal Brand Identity | Going solo? How to make your one-man-brand a huge success
Personal Brand Identity | If you don’t think you have a brand, you’re severely mistaken. It doesn’t matter if you’re Barack Obama, Barry O’Connor or Oprah Winfrey. You have a brand that’s talked about, judged, tested, measured and documented every single day. Every tweet you publish, every photo you post on Instagram or Facebook, and even the brands you associate yourselves with are a direct reflection of your own brand. In a digital age, it’s more important than ever that you have a clear sense of your own personal brand and that you make sure you’re putting your best self out there.
Personal branding is an important part of differentiating yourself from the pack and showcasing the unique insights, expertise, and experience that identify you as an expert in your niche. Great leadership requires a deep understanding of self. In business, as well as in personal life, the talents and characteristics that make you unique are often your greatest strengths. So, how do you get started with personal branding, and how do you continue to build it?
Define who you are | Personal Brand Identity
The unique talents and characteristics you’ve developed throughout your career are an asset you shouldn’t let go to waste. Think about not only what you’re good at, but also about the activities and experiences you enjoy most and build your brand around them. Your core values are the set of personal, ethical, and ideological guidelines that set the standard for the way you conduct your business and live your life. Identify the qualities and beliefs that are most important to you and use them as the compass that guides your actions and decision-making process.
Audit your online identity | Personal Brand Identity
To do this, make a list of all the social media platforms you use, compare them side by side, and look for consistency and discrepancies. And it might be a longer list than you think, because it should include everything, even those less common social media tools like Foursquare, Pinterest, Flickr, Yelp, Quora, TripAdvisor… and, yes, even Myspace.
On the internet, a picture really is worth a thousand words. This is why using a professional photo makes a great first impression. Invest in a high-quality image and use it across all of your online profiles. You want people to always have a consistent professional image of you and this one headshot will be your visual calling card across the internet.
It’s also important to be consistent with your username and personalized URLs whenever possible. In the case your name is pretty common like Joe Smith, come up with something semi-unique to you and own it.
Whatever you do, do it with passion | Personal Brand Identity
People gravitate toward passion. If you aren’t passionate about the work you do – or if you try to fake it – those you lead will pick up on it immediately. What is your niche and what value are you adding to your industry? We are all collectors and curators of content, but how we share and disseminate it to the world is what differentiates us. To truly inspire others and establish yourself as an expert, you have to love what you do. The drive to be the best is fueled by passion – without it, you may tend to view your work or activities as something you have to do, rather than something you get to do.
Be consistent | Personal Brand Identity
When it comes to your brand identity, consistency is key. If you are making claims in your ‘personal brand communication,’ but not following it through in real life, you are going to get found out. You should live by your brand values; history is full of companies whose failed products did not live up to their brand values, so don’t fall into their trap.
Perfect your craft | Personal Brand Identity
In today’s tech-savvy world, we are able to access information on any topic, from anywhere in the world. So, there’s no excuse not to stay on top of your game and up to date with the most recent and innovative trends. There’s always something new to learn, no matter how diverse your resume may be. Your personal brand should be a dynamic one, always looking to learn and try new things. If you want to stay on the leading edge, your quest for knowledge should be insatiable.