Whether you are aware of it or not, you own a personal brand. When you tend to Google yourself for no or some reason, what actually pops up? These results are basically the first and more over the everlasting impression people have of you. Is it a good or bad one? Does the information you have shared across Facebook, LinkedIn and other social media sites are consistent? Doesn’t matter if it is a job interview or something about making friends, higher chances are that these people will want to explore and learn more about who you are. A million dollar question is, do you allow your online reputation to take a life on its own or are you willing to control the narrative? In real, with the propagation of gig economy and social media, it has now become crucial for individuals to embrace branding yourself or personal branding.
Some career coaches find student branding, a result to specialize. Well, telling them this is a woefully misguided advice. Students studying abroad know that being specific might be useful to find a stay with a good job, but won’t advance too far. Here it is reflected that personal branding will be diminutive, limiting the growth and restricting you to explore new idea. So get out of the box with effective career consultation.
Redefine yourself in this 2020 as
“One who can excel at just about anything”
Thinking Tank- What actually is branding yourself/personal branding??
Personal branding refers to enhancing your skills, understanding your passion and narrowing your focus. It merely doesn’t indicate about an individual being better than their competition, but to the prospect to select one as the only solution to the problem. That’s completely possible if you have an edge that nobody else has, that is absolutely unique to be enticing to others. Branding yourself influence other’s perspectives and decision about your character, intelligence and ability, helping then determine if they want to make a business relation with you. Well-presentation and appropriate action leave a remarkable impact on people both in professional and social environment. If your personal brand isn’t attractive, cohesive or professional then it’s guaranteed that you will be passed over. To stay in the game, influence others and be more successful in developing yourself in every aspect – no wonder you’ll create a well-thought-out personal brand.
Do you agree that before selling your own product or service, you must need to sell yourself first? Well, this somehow shifts the balance of power in your favor. Branding yourself precisely, increase your demand. Your brand is what people talk about you when you aren’t present in the room. Earlier branding used to be earmarked for business, but with the advent of gig economy and social sites, the notion of personal branding has become fundamental. It is the matchless combination of experiences and skills that make a person in real, also effective branding will eventually allow you to build trust with employers and prospective clients.
Why branding yourself is more important than ever
Today cultivating a personal brand has become crucial, whether you’re an entrepreneur or employee. The main reason is that recruiters are using social media during interview process. In 2018, a CareerBuilder Survey investigated that 43% of employers check on current employee through social media, and 70% employers in the hiring process screen candidates through social media. So, from employer’s perspective, personal branding is important
Another reason that makes personal branding valuable is the gig economy which is not going away anytime soon. An ordinary person changes job every few years and it’s expected that by 2020, the contact workers and freelancer will make a huge proportion of workforce. Adding to the fact, people know that there is no job security anymore which brings awareness to them that they need to work differently if they aim to create any kind of stability for themselves. This results in dire need of workers to clearly communicate where they stand and who they are to prospective employers and clients. Ineffective management of branding yourself might risk on losing the business.
Examples of personal branding masters
Creating a personal brand doesn’t happen overnight; in fact it takes ample of time to communicate your vision and mission in a genuine way to target audience. Few of the famous people who have built incredible personal brands are Oprah Winfrey, Richard Branson, Mary Forleo, Gary Vaynerchuk etc. It has been possible through their long-term focus, consistency and handwork.
Oprah Winfrey: Oprah is unquestionably the personal branding queen. She has constantly stood to her core competency which is challenging millions of viewers to possibly live the best lives by understanding their prospective. Being true to herself, she has encouraged and inspired millions to be their best selves.
Richard Branson: He has persistently remained true to his core values, including risk-taking and adventure. He says, “Too many companies want their brands to reflect some idealized, perfected image of themselves. As a consequence, their brands acquire no texture, no character and no public trust.”
Marie Forleo: She is an inspiring writer, philanthropist, entrepreneur and teacher. Sharing impactful content in engaging and humorous manner, she has followers in 195 countries. She has managed to challenge her fans to change their way of living in order to easily change the word. Her website highlights her personal branding expert, passion and authenticity to help others.
Gary Vaynerchuk: He started by hosting a video blog name as Wine Library TV on YouTube. Later signed a 10-book reportedly for $1 million and in 2009 released a book Crush It! Why Now is the Time to Cash in on your Passion. Now, he’s one of the most successful marketers in the world and has attracted a huge loyal following. He says, “Your personal brand is your reputation. And your reputation in perpetuity is the foundation of your career.”
Crucial rules for branding yourself
Personal branding is a lifelong project which consistently changes and evolves. Also, the experts who build the biggest brands in business don’t have any hard-set rules for efficiently creating a personal brand. Here some general golden guide might be effective in rebranding or branding.
Coming up with the right personal brand will not only give you recognition in your field or constantly land work but in fact it could clear the difference between ‘Thanks for being here’ and ‘Who you actually are’ in your career.
- Have a clear focus: People usually are unfocused and upon coverage they try to be ‘everything for everyone’. Either you undergo dramatic shift in term of job roles or career, keep your self-focused on one message that help create content around your brand and let other define you more precisely. The best personal brands are specific that keeps them memorable within the targeted community.
- Create a real story: If you brand doesn’t reflect a story, then it’s pretty visible that you lose half of the potential audience. The most popular personal branding strategy these days is to create a true narrative in order to engage audience.
- Examine the competition: A successful tip to create an effective brand image is to separate oneself from the competition. Check how consumers view your competition and understand competitor’s weakness and strengths. This will benefit you in term of learning on how to differentiate your brand from competition.
- Identify strengths: Being aware of competitors strength and weakness, now reflect on yours. Perform a market target analysis and take advantage from it. It is one useful tool that enables you to identify yours and business strengths, also what is important to engage customers while integrating them into brand campaign.
- Be your brand: Make sure to present yourself as how the brand is identified. It merely means to live up the brand in you in every aspect.
- Get ready to fail and rise: Failure seems tough and generally avoided by human nature. However, in order to rise above the rest, at least once you need to have failure that can make you aware of what can happen to you. The best brand comes from repeated failures and mistakes, trial and errors and not from prompt perfection.
- Become a great communicator: Studies shows that communication skills are the best determinant for professional mobility and upward social.
- Follow a successful example: Studying the trends and popular individuals on social media platform can help you get your brand viral through implementing the tactics they use. Establishing the next big trend and creatively dissecting social analytics can be within the grasp too if the concentration is paid across various social media platform rather than narrowing focus on one.
In real you don’t need to be a live example of Richard Branson or Oprah, to have a personal brand. To summarize, it’s all a matter of constantly curating and crafting your digital presence and notably, keeping it all real! Your authenticity, transparency and honesty are few that might differentiate you in long-run. Must realize that you never get a second chance to create your first lasting impression – so make the one that sets you apart and above, build trust and reflect on who you are. Does this all makes you overwhelmed? Studying abroad but facing challenges on branding yourself? Book a career consultation that might give you more on student branding and assist to brand you in an actual manner.