When entering into any professional field or career it’s important to have a firm understanding of who you are, what your story is, and what you have to offer people. These are all important aspects of your personal brand. “But what if I don’t have a personal brand?” We all have one, and if you think you don’t, it’s a more important time than ever to build your own.
1. What Makes You Uniquely You?
This is by far the most important step in building your personal brand. You need to take a look at yourself and figure out who you are, what you have to offer and what makes you uniquely you. This is not the time to use generic terms like hard-working, creative, determined, etc. Everyone can be those things or say they are those things. What makes you different from the person next to you? Why should someone hire you or promote you over someone else? What makes you special?
2. Clean Up Your Online Presence
No matter how good you look in person, or how well you present yourself on paper, if you don’t monitor your online presence, all of that will negate itself. You could be a very professional and well put-together person but if you have pictures that won’t represent yourself in a good way or don’t express the person you’re trying to come off as, that’s how you’ll be judged. Now, this isn’t to say don’t post ever again on social media. Just be aware that privacy settings are your friend. Use them.
3. Use Social Media to Your Advantage
While social media can be detrimental (as discussed above), it can also be a very big benefactor and helper in brand building. Once you’ve pulled your personal brand pulled together, now is the time to use social media to your advantage. Share your resume on all of your social media sites. Post about open jobs. Make sure you’re utilizing LinkedIn and ask friends to endorse your skills. Even if you’re not looking for a job, it’s important to use social media to your advantage because employers will monitor these sites while you’re employed so you always want to be improving on your brand.
4. What is Your Message?
It’s important to form your professional message no matter what environment you are in. Another what to think about this is as an elevator pitch. If you were on an elevator with the CEO of the company of your dream job, what would you say in that 60 seconds to represent yourself in the best possible light to try and score a job or interview? This premise works for any environment. If you’re looking for a promotion, pitching an idea to your boss, trying to get a job, and many more. Know you message, find the key points, condense it, and have it memorized so you can always make people aware of your worth.
5. Grow With Your Personal Brand
Proclaiming your personal brand now does not mean that is what you’re stuck with until you go through these steps again. Your personal brand is changing just like you are changing. It’s important to include into your plans where you want to be and the goals of how you want to get there. This will allow you to seamlessly grow with your brand without even thinking about it. As long as you are working towards goals, your brand will keep growing with you as you grow as a person.
Have you developed your personal brand? What sets you apart from others?