Way back in the day, being a successful executive meant taking on your company’s brand as your own. Execs wore company baseball caps and handed out company pens. They made sure to be more or less invisible. Right up until they got the gold watch and the goodbye lunch. But in today’s workplace, surviving means not blending in but standing out. If you’re an executive in 2021, you’re in charge of creating a brand that is separate from the company. You are also in competition with millions of other Google searches and LinkedIn profiles and whatever new platform is coming next. To be effective with your executive branding, you need to distinguish yourself from the crowd, and that’s where personal branding comes in.
What Is Executive Branding In 2021?
According to an excellent article in Forbes, differentiating yourself is a major factor that allows you to build trust with prospective clients and partners. People who want to do business with your company will look for the executive of the company online. Therefore, one of your first actions in establishing your brand is to do a basic Google search on your name. What comes up? Hopefully nothing negative! But you can’t be sure until you check. For better or worse, the ‘you’ that people see online is the real you as far as most of the world is concerned. So keep an eye out.
The next step in developing your personal brand is making sure your information is consistent across social platforms. You’d be shocked how many people just leave expired information for the world to find. It does not inspire confidence in potential customers to realize that you’re essentially ignoring yourself.
Creativity In Personal Branding
What about the creative part of personal branding — the fun part?
“A personal brand is the unique combination of skills and experiences that make you who you are,” notes Forbes. “It is how you present yourself to the world.”
If you’re Richard Branson, the world knows that you’re a genius self-promoter whose zest for adventure resonates across all his enterprises. With his blond hair and dark goatee and enormous grin, Branson makes us believe that everything he touches will be smart, cutting-edge, and always fun.
Rihanna has lit up the style world with her Fenty line, extending her personal glamour to women of all skin tones. Rihanna’s brand is not just beauty but a great personality and a willingness to be fair.
Then there’s Oprah. We all know about Oprah!
Creating Your Brand
What if you’re not a world-famous beauty or a skydiving high roller or a media mogul? What’s your personal brand? Believe me, you have what it takes to become a compelling brand. It’s just that most of us don’t truly realize how unique and valuable we are.
Branding is a marathon, a commitment to curating your image and keeping it fresh. You establish a big component of your brand when you post pictures and videos on social media. What you’re doing, how you’re looking, whom you’re with. All those clues add up to a rich impression of you.
You can always post content that will enhance your brand. (LinkedIn is a great place for this.) If you’re an attorney, you might post a news story about a case your firm won. Or a piece about an upcoming change in your state’s laws that could affect your online community.
Tools For Your Executive Branding
Remember, it’s not just one tool — it’s a combination. You can take advantage of powerful strategies across media platforms to help tell your brand story. In fact, designing and packaging all the elements of a comprehensive brand statement is one of the things we love to do at Creative Allies. We can help you with logo design, simple websites, blog writing, video production, and social media management. The whole nine yards. We love helping leaders with executive branding!
What’s your reward for all this branding effort? When you have the elements of your personal brand in place, you’ll know your selling points. You’ll be more confident and you’ll be known and respected before you have your first call. Brilliant: that’s your brand!