Everyone’s existence, regardless of whether it can be considered “genuine” or not, is made up of an image or a brand someone makes for themselves. This can be said for personal individuals, communal groups, and even companies and beyond.
Having a solid personal brand allows you to not just appear but to actually be more driven and confident in your capabilities, knowledge, and self, an advantage we will expand on later. The first notion of personal branding was coined by a man named Tom Peters in the late nineties. Peters proclaimed that we all are CEOs of our own brands and now it rings truer than ever.
Personal branding takes lots of effort and a resilient attitude towards making mistakes and still continuing. If you cannot commit to making big changes and continuing after failure, this may not be a characteristic you can reach due to the difficulty of maintaining that image.
What is a personal brand?
A personal brand is equivalent to an image you want to achieve and external influences to perceive. This personal brand all comes down to adding value to you as an individual in the eyes of others and has become extremely important when pursuing candidatures, especially when you visit Lensa to use as a tool for finding a job or other such portals.
With the internet being everywhere, personal brands take on a second identity which can be found online. Cultivating a likable brand in the eyes of recruiters and companies may just land you that job you’ve been eyeing.
Why focus on your personal brand?
Developing a brand as an individual who works as a professional in any field, be that in an executive position or less, means you will have to become an expert in your field to back up your output to the world, which will allow you to become increasingly better-known.
For online personal branding, the main step is to follow similar strategies to content marketing since that is all you can do on these platforms. This means your knowledge will be outputted online in the form of content whilst creating an image around your presence.
Having a personal brand isn’t based on arrogance but rather an insight into what you deliver and what others can expect from you. This reputation will make you a great candidate in the eyes of recruiters since they know what to expect and are aware of your capabilities.
This can also set you onto having your own company one day since it gives validity to your being and can also land you new jobs, especially if you are looking to switch careers and don’t have many connections yet.
How to develop your personal brand
The most important thing about your personal brand is to articulate it clearly for recruiters and others to see and to make it genuine since you won’t be able to hold up an ingenuine persona for long.
Locate your passions
As mentioned earlier, you need to start creating your personal brand in something you truly enjoy since it is a long journey that won’t be achieved if you dislike your path. Start by reflecting on your passions and your skills and characteristics. Think about what you could achieve using those skills and what options you may have when taking them into account.
Once you’re certain of the above-mentioned things, start marketing yourself in that way on your platforms.
Create yourself a presence
Start transforming your online profiles into something that is representative of the goal you are trying to achieve. There are many different ways to do this depending on what career you are going for, but below, you can find a few named methods.
A solid way to start creating a presence is by sharing articles you write as well as ideologies and values that put you in a positive light. It is important to also share struggles and to be humble no matter whether you’re on this journey from the employer or employee side. You could even share your journey so far to sound more personal and driven.
Focus on your business profile
Recruiters nowadays almost exclusively use AI-driven recruitment softwares and ability tests for recruitment to find the right candidates online, and candidates search online for company profiles and reviews. Making a strong online presence is crucial in achieving a personal brand that is trustworthy and sought after, similar to how influencers do it but on a more professional level.
Pay attention to the information on your profiles matching your resume and vice versa since these are the profiles recruiters will first lay their eyes on. Personal brands count as first impressions and countless studies have discovered that first impressions tend to be more lasting than we’d presume, especially in business environments and recruitment.
Create a plan
Corporations constantly make plans to sell by using data, countless marketing teams, and conducting research. You should make a development path to follow which will look similar to a plan to commercialize yourself.
The development will include your goals, your current competency, your needed competency for your goal, by when you wish to achieve this, and so on. You will essentially be answering the five W’s of the English language.
The levels of visibility you can achieve
There are usually five forms of visibility that you can achieve with your personal brand, starting with local experts.
Local experts are individuals who have developed a solid personal brand exclusively in their circles, which include their place within their geographical location as well as their clientele. They tend to have little to no visibility outside of this circle which may be due to their career residing in a niche sector or simply out of luck or choice.
Local heroes tend to be firms or individuals who are active within their communities, be that the business community or the general one. Publishing articles, holding seminars, and hosting events are all characteristics of a local hero that can be achieved by having visibility outside of your clientele or business circle.
Risers in the industry
People who are rising within their industry have the regional reach, meaning they are known by many within their region thanks to speaking about the industry they are in often and publishing about their expertise in the field. Individuals falling into this category also get to charge higher fees and tend to have limited schedules due to their expert personal brand.
This level becomes the premium sector of the individual’s field. Industry leaders are nationally known and have some say in important issues pertaining to their fields. They also are seen as innovative and are able to charge higher fees to a more exclusive clientele.
Lastly, there are global leaders who are individuals that are globally known and are some of the most sought-after individuals in their field. They’ve achieved this level through a lifetime of research and perfecting their work. International firms seek them out, or extremely exclusive clients for personal reasons.