If you’re new to personal branding, looking to recreate your image, or hoping to launch your career, the entire concept can be overwhelming. Yet personal branding is essential to all professionals. To get started, you’ll need to first reassess yourself. American Intercontinental University recently drafted a set of personal branding questions to ask yourself and to begin carving out your brand. Check them out and see what you think!
Defining your brand
Who are you and what do you do? Think of how you want others to see you, what stories you want to share, and where you’ve been. The key here is authenticity. Your brand should be a realistic representation of you. Next, narrow down your desired field. What do you do, or what do you desire to do? Keep this part simple, but then go further with your niche. Identify and develop a specific specialty area to hone in on.
Once you’ve narrowed down your story and what you do, focus on what makes you stand out. Why should people hire you? Why should people respect you? Remember you? What makes you different and what can you offer others? These personal branding questions should be answered with your skills and unique qualities. Don’t hesitate to tie in your background here. You’ll also want to market yourself in a way that makes others enviable. What can you offer others that others can’t? Whether it’s your consistency, your quality of work, or your reliability, play up whatever quality you feel defines you and your brand. Lastly, American Intercontinental University advises you strive to break the stereotypes of professionals in your field. By standing out against the expected, you’ll increase you memorability and strengthen your brand.
Creating the brand
Once you’ve got the blueprints to your brand, the next step is to establish it. In a recent interview, The Creative Group’s executive Director Diane Domeyer broke personal branding down into three steps.
First, make your brand visible and digitally present. Throughout your various mediums and platforms, keep your brand and image consistent. Use your full name on each profile and site to make yourself easily identified. Keep your content and image as consistent as possible to manifest your brand.
Secondly, display your work or snippets of what you’ve done. Domeyer suggests providing around eight samples. Make sure to provide a good variety to demonstrate your versatility as well. To showcase your portfolio in the best way possible, create a clean and easy-to-navigate layout. This can easily be done on your own personal website, which you should design to showcase your personality and style as well. Squarespace provides great templates for displaying your work online and offers streamlined websites. You can even customize your domain for maximum visibility and traffic.
The last suggestion Domeyer provides for personal branding is to establish yourself throughout the many mediums of social media. While sites such as LinkedIn are more professional, the lines are more blurred when it comes to Facebook and Twitter. Infusing your profiles with personal updates are alright, though Domeyer advises keeping an overarching theme of professionalism. The other key to social media is to update it regularly. For those of us without an abundance of time on our hands, remember quality over quantity when it comes to updating. Put some thought into your posts to keep them engaging and relevant.
Whether you’re just starting out or revamping your career, ask yourself these personal branding questions and see where you’re at. Reassessing yourself and your career will help you to narrow your focus, optimize your efforts, and strengthen your brand. Let us know what you think of these branding ideas. Start the conversation below!