Brand You: Like the Ultimate Box of Chocolates

Updated: Jan 18


Branding, it’s not just for boxes of chocolate anymore. Branding has become a way for individuals to differentiate themselves from their peers, to increase their professional opportunities, to develop their network and gain greater visibility for their creative work. The ease of creating a personal brand through the tool that is social media is clear. If you are interested in knowing more about personal branding, then keep reading. We’ll be exploring the what, the why and the how of personal branding in this post.

Personal Branding - What is it?

Your personality and your aesthetic Personal branding is your personality and aesthetic. It’s as much about your way of thinking feeling and acting as it is about attitude and your opinions. It’s not only what you say but how you say it. It’s how you interact with the world around you and the people in it. Secondly, it’s your aesthetic, the way you present yourself. The colours, symbols, imagery that you surround yourself with and display when you’re online.

Example:

Our brand personality is = Global – Unbounded – Inclusive

Our aesthetic is = Tropical – Summer All Year Round – Beach – Nature

Your vision and your mission

Personal branding is also your vision and mission. It’s your interests and goals and how you choose to pursue them. Your personal brand should be able to clearly communicate your passions in a way that speaks to your audience and makes them what to know more. It should clearly communicate what you stand for and against. It should give an indication to your audience that you care about them and their support for your work.

What you bring to the table

Personal branding is also being able to communicate your educational qualifications, your work and life experience and what you bring to the table. It should make clear what you have expertise in and how you can use that expertise to benefit others. It should clearly communicate the type of people who inspire you and associate with. After all, you are whom you spend the most time with

. Why is it important?

It helps you know yourself

It’s confidence building to know who you are, what experiences built you and what matters to you. When outside influence and expectations are stripped away, it’s knowing who you are as a person. It doesn’t come from your job title, marital status or stage of life. It’s something else entirely.

It gives you more focus

It’s having the awareness that you know what and why you are working on developing certain skills. It’s knowing what you need to do to achieve your goals. It’s having a greater plan for your future endevours and knowing you aren’t directionless.

It helps you to help others

Knowing yourself better means you know what you can offer to others. It means you know how you can make promises and deliver on those promises. You know you add value and you do the work necessary to add it whenever possible. No excuses.

How do you make sure your brand is rock solid?

You have a personal branding statement

The way to develop a personal branding statement is by: 1) Define whom your marketing yourself to 2) Define how you want to be perceived 3) Define what you bring to the table 4) Give your audience reasons to believe you

You have a strong aesthetic

Your aesthetic can be any and all of these elements: 1) Colours – black and white, monochromatic, colourful, etc. 2) Imagery – macro, landscape, using specific filters, etc. 3) Theme – tropical, boho, punk, retro, organic, etc. 4) Logo – brand mark, abstract mark, mascot, wordmark, lettermark, letterform, combination mark, emblem logo or dynamic mark.

You are consistent

Whether it’s how you are on the phone, in an email, your online comments, and tweets or the content you produce it needs to have the same tone. Whether it’s the people you follow, collaborate with or associate with you need to be consistent. Your words whether they are written or spoken need to be consistent with what you present online. You also need to be present even on days you’re not really in the mood. Maintaining an online presence is what will ensure that you build trust and loyalty in your audience.

Need some help with your digital marketing or social media management? Talk to us.

References: Dalla-Camina, M. 2016, ‘What Do You Want To Be Known For?’, Huffington Post, viewed 25 October 2016, http://www. huffingtonpost.com/megan-dallacamina/what-doyou-want-to-be-known-for_b_12112598.html

Petrucă, I. 2016, ‘Personal Branding Through Social Media’, International Journal of Communication Research, vol. 6, iss. 4, pp. 389-392, viewed 02 April 2019, https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.lib.swin.edu.au/docview/1907275450?accountid=14205

What you say, do, like, share and comment on says something about you. What you associate with says something about you. You’re aim should be trying to be all things to all people. Why? Because it’s exhausting and not sustainable. Your personal brand should enrich not diminish your opportunities, your work, your potential for collaboration. Social media should be a tool that helps you to increase visibility and develop a positive reputation. If not maybe your personal brand need some attending to.

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