Personal branding is the practice of people marketing themselves and their careers as brands. Creating your personal brand is an opportunity to identify what makes you unique and relevant in an expansive job market. With increased globalisation, social networking and other technological advances, it has become extremely important that you can clearly communicate what sets you apart from the rest of the crowd.
Benefits of Personal Branding
- Improves your own self-awareness and helps you identify your strengths.
- You will find it easier to identify your goals and work towards them.
- It helps you create a strong visibility in your chosen field.
- Separates you from your peers and increases your chances of getting hired for a job.
How to Create a Strong Brand
According to Dan Schawbel – author of Me 2.0: Build a Powerful Brand to Achieve Career Success – with a rise in social technology, branding has become more personal and within reach. He recommends using tools like a business card, blog, website, Facebook profile, Twitter account etc. to highlight your brand so people can easily see what you’re about.
Here are a few ideas on how you can create your personal brand
1. Be yourself
Who you are is intrinsically important in creating your brand. Think about your strengths, your preferences and passions, as these define what you have to offer in a job. The more authentic you are, the more likely it is that you will find opportunities that are aligned to your goals.
2. Create a professional profile
LinkedIn is one of the most useful resources available to professionals and businesses today. It combines parts of your cover letter, work experience, educational qualifications, references, hobbies etc. to create a wholesome picture of you. It is also a great way to build your network.
3. Write a blog
A blog that features your name will easily show on a search engine like Google or Bing if someone is looking for you. Blogs also allow you to showcase your knowledge about your chosen industry. You can write articles, reviews and much more about topics that you find interesting. This is a great way to connect with like-minded people and other professionals in your industry.
4. Email address
Most people use email to communicate and connect with each other. Even when you interact with someone on Facebook or Twitter or LinkedIn you can get email notifications. Make sure that your email address is professional and representative of who you are.
Pay attention to how you come across to others and how you want to be perceived by them when working on creating your personal brand.
Apart from all the online tools that are available to you, your personal style is also important for example ensure you use professional images of yourself on social media platforms.
A strong personal brand will help you go a long way towards achieving your professional goals.