What is personal branding?
Personal branding is the practice of people marketing themselves and their careers as brands. You are your business. You are your company. You are your organization. You are your product. You are your service. You are the brand. As an entrepreneur and business owner, you are a walking billboard for your business or company. No one can represent your business as good as you can. You are the most accurate representation of your business that there is. It doesn’t get any more accurate than you. No one can explain your vision the way that you can.
We all have unique characteristics, gifts, skills, personality traits, passions, and interests. Personal branding is about taking all of those ingredients, mixing them up and creating a product/service that can benefit others by solving problems, providing information, convenience, and value. Personal branding is about packaging YOU in a certain way and presenting yourself to your audience and the world.
Why is personal branding so important?
Personal branding is so important because whether you like it nor not, you have a brand. Everyone does. The danger is not being conscious of that brand and what it’s saying about you to the world. For example, do you know someone who always is pessimistic about everything, and never has anything positive or uplifting to say? They see the glass as half empty instead of half full. That’s their brand. When they come around, you already know what to expect.
Do you know someone who is always loud and boisterous? That’s their brand. What about someone who’s a hard worker and takes care of their family? That’s their brand. All of those are unique characteristics that create a reputation for those people. My question to is this: what reputation is your brand creating for you with or without your knowledge? Being purposeful about guiding and cultivating your personal brand is so important because personal branding is one of those things that you can’t stop from happening, but can control what it does to your image and for your image.
How do you create a personal brand?
When you consistently present and market yourself as something, people will automatically associate you with that thing. When they think of you, they think of the service or product you offer. So, when you think of Mike, you think of milkshakes. Why? Because Mike always talks about milkshakes; it’s his favorite dessert and he posts pictures of milkshakes on his Pinterest and Instagram.
But, this is how you know you’ve become a personal brand: when people associate that thing with you. So, when people think of milkshakes, they think of Mike. Why? Because Mike has marketed himself and the milkshake expert. He has a YouTube channel of milkshake videos. He educates people on how to create different flavor milkshakes. He knows the exact ingredients. Mike has a milkshake cafe where he sells milkshakes. Mike has a recipe book full of milkshake recipes, and he also has a milkshake starter kit. All of this creates brand dominance for Mike. Do you see why you automatically think of Mike when you think of and hear the word milkshake? It’s consistent personal branding. You can make people believe anything about you if you say it and tell them long enough. Anything people hear long enough, they start to believe. But, there comes a point in time when you have to back it up with the physical proof. Videos, providing the service, live events, photos, etc.
How can it help you grow professionally?
When you create a personal brand for yourself, you carve out space in the market that makes you an expert, therefore people will buy from you and work for you and with you. People do business with those they know, trust, and like. Consistent personal branding provides knowledge of who you are and what you do. It embodies trustworthiness because if you’ve been repairing cars for 30 years, I’m more likely to trust you with my vehicle when it breaks down. And, finally if you are genuine and unique, people will like you. Not everyone, but there will be a group of people who are drawn to you. I believe that we all have a specific group of people that we are called to reach, and personal branding will definitely help you reach those people. However, it doesn’t happen automatically. It takes work, thought, and cultivation in order for you to grow professionally, financially, and personally. And, that’s what I do- I help people cultivate their personal brand.
How can I help you?
Let’s talk and figure out the next step for your personal brand. If you haven’t taken the time to guide and cultivate the personal brand that you do have, then let me help you do that. Use the form below to schedule an in-depth brand consultation.