Gone are the days where you can blend in with the millions and get things done! In this age of social media and megabytes of data joisting for people’s short attention span, you need to stand out for people to notice you. How can you ensure that you’re the choice they make everywhere you bid on projects as a small business owner? The simple answer is a Personal Brand! A personal brand showcases your caliber and abilities to employees and clients. It includes your social media pages, blogs, and every single thing that showcases who you are to the world. Do you want to create a personal brand? We have taken the time to explain what is a personal brand, how it helps you, and how to create one. You would find this information useful, no matter the career path you have chosen.
Let’s get right to it!
What is a Personal Brand?
A personal brand is a total package of who you are and what that comprises presented in an easy to decipher way. It’s what makes it easy for people to know what to expect at an Oprah Winfrey show vs a talk by Bill Gates. They have both built their brand and fans expect them to act accordingly.
It’s basically what people make of you. That’s why whether you choose to cultivate a personal brand or not, you become known for something and your brand becomes acknowledged.
Therefore, it is essential to take charge of your destiny and personal brand. You don’t want others to determine how your organization or anyone else for that matter sees you. you.
You take charge of your life by creating and sustaining your brand. It doesn’t mean lying or false packaging. A personal brand is just taking those virtues and abilities you already have and presenting them in the best light!
Most people think personal branding started with the social media age. Therefore, thinking it’s false and mere packaging. The truth is far from that!
Join us as we take a trip through history to discover the origins of personal branding!
Is It a New Concept?
Personal branding is not a new concept. It had been long before the social media age. It dates back as long as man has been social.
However, the first recorded notable thing about this concept was in the 1950s, more than half a century ago. Certain social scientists were studying why individuals are each unique. In their research, they found that people use signs, possessions, symbols, brands, and products in expressing their uniqueness.
According to their findings, humans generally displayed select characteristics and elements based on the feedback of others. It was in 1959 that Erving Hoffman coined the term “self-presentation” for it.
Goffman compared social interactions to stage performances. Actors also show things that would convince the audience to believe their roles. Like these actors, Goodman proposed that man acts based on the audience or situation. We, like actors, want the applause so we play the role that gets it for us!
In 1997, Tom Peter published “A Brand Called You” in Fast Company. This piece has since then been a key part of any discussion on personal branding. In it, Peter asks us to imagine ourselves as a company.
“We are CEOs of our own companies: Me Inc. To be in business today, our most important job is to be head marketer for the brand called YOU”
This piece’s introduction says it all. YOU are a brand! You need to advertise your brand well if you want anyone to buy or do business with your brand. It’s that simple!
Now, let’s look at how this concept can help in your career!
How Does a Personal Brand Help Your Career?
A personal brand can help you accelerate your career. It puts you in positions that might take you longer to attain. Other than making people want to employ you, it also shows your value to the team after getting the job.
So, you never want to lose sight of your brand for the corporate brand. Here are some more of the reasons why;
It Builds Trust
People can easily out their faith in you when they understand your full capabilities. Building a well-known personal brand ensures that everyone that comes in contact with you can trust you to deliver on things assigned to you.
This trust would invariably mean more tasks would be committed to you. More tasks mean more opportunities to rise to the peak of your career!
It Increases Your Credibility
Personal branding not only increases your employers’ trust in you. It also increases your credibility with other organizations, businesses, and clients. Even people that don’t know you personally but have seen your brand strength can easily trust you to do the job.
A personal brand can get you connections even outside your sphere of influence. You would get more opportunities to talk to people and make leads.
It Boosts Your Confidence
More than what a personal brand can do to the people around you, it can also influence you. Personal branding gives you a fuller picture of what you can do, making it easier for you to believe in yourself.
You begin to see your level of competence as you build your brand. It would also boost your confidence to see that you have something to offer for the good of society. A good personal brand shows your strength and where you apply them.
It Makes You Look More Legitimate
In a world full of scams in every sector, any factor that makes you look more legitimate cannot be pushed aside. A personal brand lends credence to your work and shows you off as a reliable person. Due to the work that goes into building a brand, many people acknowledge it to be as good as a certificate.
A legitimate outlook would help you beat competitors. It helps you sell more and win the hearts of your clients and customers. You generally look better which is a definite plus for your career.
You Become More Visible
The creation of a personal brand involves improving your reputation. You would need to get more out there if you want a better reputation. Therefore, in the course of building a personal brand, you become more visible to people in and outside your sphere. You can reach heights and demand things that you normally won’t dare with better visibility in your career.
Personal branding is always a plus in any career. Your employers and clients alike would benefit from it. You also stand to gain more confidence in your abilities.
Conclusion – Build Your Brand!
Now you know what a personal brand is and how it helps your career, you can start working on your brand. Remember, you are the CEO of Me Inc.! If you find it hard to create your personal brand, you can ask for help. Some people can help you build a personal brand for your career. A personal brand is always a worthy investment, even if you don’t see the rewards immediately!