It seems that there’s a lot of talk about personal branding in today’s world. There’s so much advice and so many statistics about what tactics deliver the best results that it can be overwhelming at times. But don’t let all the chatter prevent you from creating your best possible brand. Forget all the details and focus on the three fundamentals of professional personal branding laid out by Global Writes: authenticity, visibility, and an online presence.
1. Begin with an accurate and authentic foundation
In their recent article, Global Writes stresses the importance of authenticity in your personal brand. A brand with an inauthentic founding will not succeed – everyone will see through it. A brand has to capture your personality and values in order to work – that’s its point. Whether you already have created a brand or are just beginning, take the time to reassess the foundation of your professional personal brand.
A great way to seek out authenticity for your brand is to gain another perspective through personal assessments. StrengthsFinder is a very well-known and popular assessment that focuses on your best strengths, rather than weaknesses, and how these can work to your advantage in working with others. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator narrows your personality down into one of sixteen varieties and shows you your tendencies and how you best work. Additionally, the DiSC assessment reveals your communication and personality within a group setting and teamwork.
Having trouble defining your personal brand? Global Writes suggests you try reaching out to those around you that know your character and work habits. Sometimes others can have better insight on ourselves than we do. Ask someone how they might describe you to others, their impression of you, and how they perceive your strengths. Combine these with your own ideals to put your brand into focus.
2. Visibility is everything
You need an audience in order to be recognized, so let the world know about your brand! Networking, as always, is essential to your professional wellbeing, says Global Writes. Building relationships based on trust and your reputation is how you craft your brand. Make an effort to add networking regularly into your schedule. Networking events are common and popular, plus everyone in attendance wants a mutually beneficial connection too. As a professional, staying active in your field is equally as important as networking. Attend conferences, follow influencers, and stay involved in the conversation to stay relevant and visible in the community.
Another key to visibility is consistency. Staying consistent across social media platforms is essential to staying visible and maintaining your brand. While it’s good to show your personality with personal posts, make sure they don’t stray too far from your brand. Don’t post something on Facebook for friends and family that you wouldn’t want to be sharing on Twitter or Instagram with your followers. Ensure that your blog posts are relevant and on-topic to your brand. Keep your LinkedIn profile polished up to date, but don’t let your images on other sites diminish your professional appearance. Keep handles and usernames as similar as possible, or in the best possible scenario, the same. Post badges and links to these on your website or email signature to ensure that your connections are as connected as possible.
3. Lay your groundwork online
If you’re not online, then where are you? It’s true that your brand needs to be fully represented in person through the work you do, how you interact with others, and how you present yourself to the world. But the internet also provides limitless potential for branding your image in other ways as well. Because there are so many ways to promote your brand online, Global Writes stresses that you plan out your personal branding strategy. As Duct Tape Marketing so precisely puts it, “To wade into various social networks without intention is to almost guarantee wasted time and effort.”
So what does that mean when it comes to personal branding professionals? It means producing quality content over a large quantity of posts. It also means engaging and expanding your networks on social media. Target your content to fill a niche, reach out to your audience, and stay focused by infusing your brand’s fundamental values.
Another essential to a professional’s personal branding endeavors online is to utilize a personal website as a landing base to your online activity. Because 93% of website visits begin with a search engine, you want to put the best possible content out there at the top page of the search results. After all, only one out of four internet users make it past the first page of search results, according to Search Engine Journal.
That’s where your website comes in. Because you can completely customize and cater your website to showcase your brand, a personal website is the best investment you can make right now. If you don’t have one yet, give Squarespace a try. This platform makes it easy to create a website that looks professionally made. Plus, it has award-winning support services and design and is mobile-friendly. Squarespace will allow you to tell the story of your brand, expand on your experiences, and provide work samples or a portfolio. Most importantly, a Squarespace website will let you take control into your own hands to get your name front and center on a search results page. People are looking online, so give them something worth looking for!
Did we forget any personal branding fundamentals for professionals? Let us know and leave a comment below.