With the chance that you will have more than one career over your lifetime and your education and qualifications counting for far less than they used to, a personal brand is a great way to show people what you are about, tying in all the experiences you’ve had, and promote yourself to potential employers and customers.
But where do you start? Here are 5 steps to help you to identify what your personal brand should be about:
1. Identify your Area of Expertise
Finding your area of expertise can be a difficult operation, so an easy way to get started is to ask yourself some questions:
- What do people say that you are good at?
- What do you enjoy in your professional and personal life?
- What do you read about most often online? What do you like learning about and sharing with others?
- Will you still be interested in this particular area six months or a year from now?
You can then hone in on what you enjoy and develop a name and a niche for yourself. For example, enjoying your day to day job as an HR manager is not enough, but you could focus on your ability to nurture new talent, create team leaders within organisations or sharing with others how you break into the role and what day-to-day life is like for school leavers.
2. What are your Objectives?
Why are you building a personal brand? What do you hope to achieve when people search for your name? What do you want them to see? Some reasons may include:
Differentiating Yourself From Competitors
With 118 applicants for every full-time position, you might want your personal brand to be tip top so you are more likely to receive job opportunities through social media sites such as LinkedIn.
You might want to use your personal brand to help clients find out about you and what your company does so that they can buy your services.
You might want more consumers to find out about you so you can sell more of your products.
3. Who are Your Audience?
Knowing your audience means that you can tailor your message to suit them and their needs. Think about:
- Your customer’s age and what language they use
- What kind of voice you want to build (formal, informative, personal, chatty etc).
- What your competitors are doing - what you like about them and what you are going to do differently
- What are you trying to achieve and what are you doing (digital marketer, HR specialist, selling personalised stationery to freelancers etc).
- Who is your target market? Who are you going to benefit from most?
4. Develop Your Core Message
Create a brief mission statement that identifies who you are, what you do and what you stand for. Take some time to study other people with similar messages online and try to find your own unique view on your area of expertise.