In today’s world, you can no longer separate who you are from what you do. It is all tied together. Your personal brand and the brand of your business are connected. So, it is important to spend some time thinking about who you are and how you are perceived by others.
You may think you don’t have a personal “brand” - but you do. It is simply what others think when they hear your name. And everything you post on social media contributes to this perception. This may sound daunting, but the reality is that you have the power to shape those perceptions. By being aware of what a personal brand is and how you can make yours stronger, you can control what your reputation is and, ultimately, build your business. And while developing your personal brand isn’t hard or even all that time consuming, it is so hugely important for everything that you do from this point forward.
Your personal brand is your story. And once you have crafted the keypoints of your story, knowing what to post on social media becomes easy!
Why is personal branding important?
People are attracted to people. We like people who are like us, who inspire us, who we learn from or share similar values with. This is especially true in social media - human interaction is the driving force behind the phenomenon. We enjoy doing business and spending time with genuine people who share our values. But we don’t know what those values are unless they are communicated to us, which is where personal branding comes in.
Let’s take, for example, your hairdresser. You have two options. Both are centrally located, skilled (cut your hair like you like), and charge the same amount. But one of them is into yoga and the Whole30, like you are, and the other is not. The former shares recipes and inspires you to stay on your wellness journey when you go to him or her and you feel motivated when you leave. Which one are you going to go to?
This is how personal branding can help your business. When you know what is important to you and share those values with your clients and potential clients (whether through conversations or what you post on social media) you will draw likeminded people to you. This is called the law of attraction (one of my other favorite topics that we will dive more into later!).
Not only does having a strong personal brand attract the RIGHT kind of customers and clients, but it makes doing business more fun. Don’t you enjoy working with people that you like and are similar to? But in order to attract like-minded people, you need to be sure that your personality and values (i.e. personal brand) are being clearly communicated.
How to develop your personal brand
We know that personal branding is important, but how do you build yours? You already have a personal brand – you just need to uncover it and share it! Here is how to do just that!
- Make a list of what is most important to you.
What defines you? What are your core values? What are your passions – both personal and professional? What makes you uniquely you and also separates you from others? If you don’t know, ask others around you who know you well and whose opinion you trust. Write down as many words as you want. Here are a few to get you started: family, wellness, travel, golf, technology, service.
- Prioritize your list.
The top five that are most important to you are your personal brand values. These are the things you should be posting about on social media!
Once you’ve chosen those magic five, focus on them. Posting about them consistently will help others get to know you and what is important to you. They will start to know your personal brand! When I first did this, I was afraid that I would be limited by focusing on only five things, but I quickly found that I was naturally posting about them anyways. That’s the beautiful thing about personal branding - it isn’t hard to do, because it is really just sharing with the world who you are - but doing it consistently!
This should go without saying but remember that your personal brand must be genuine. If it is not an accurate portrayal of who you are, it will be completely ineffective. For example, if you don’t enjoy exercising, don’t make fitness a part of your personal brand. It will come off as disingenuine and will end up annoying people instead of attracting them.
Personal branding is an important concept, especially in today’s increasingly digital and competitive world. We all have a personal brand, whether we are aware of it or not. Once we know our brand values and focus on consistently sharing our unique story with others, we can strengthen our brand, attract the right clients and build our business. This also makes social media marketing more fun and takes the guess work out of posting! I’d also love to hear your brand values. Once you uncover them, leave them in the comments!
Prefer video? Check out my Facebook Live video on this topic!