Personal branding is something that will position you in the minds of your audience and help you achieve personal and professional success .
In this article we see what it is, why it is important and how to create your own personal branding.
1. What is personal Branding (and what it is not)
To fully understand why it is so important to structure a solid and credible personal branding, it is necessary to take a small step back and ask ourselves: What is a Brand? The Brand is what is commonly defined as a "brand", that is, all those characteristics and values that identify a brand or company, differentiating it from all the others.
When You see this symbol:
You can match every the logo to the name of a company, a product or a message, that is the payoff ( Just do it ).
This is exactly what branding is.
What about personal branding? Personal branding is something very similar but instead of referring to a company, we refer to a person.
Jeff Bezos has created an even shorter and more incisive definition: "Branding is what people say about you when you're not in the room". Personal branding is therefore everything about our reputation, what characterizes our person, our values and our belief system that create our personal brand and differentiate us from our competitors. But not only that: it is also the ability to transmit these values and to promote oneself on the market.
2. What is not Personal Branding
Personal branding is not the way we convey our values. Personal branding therefore does not mean having a blog nor an account on a social network. Personal branding does not even mean creating a character very different from our person as we risk being artificial and not credible. Finally, having a personal branding does not automatically mean being an influencer, even if the two concepts somehow go hand in hand. If personal branding is done flawlessly, that's obvious.
3. Why it is important to develop solid Personal Branding
Through branding You can share your values, your vision and your mission, naturally attracting all those who embrace your same ideals.
You can create relationships, generate empathy and trust, differentiate yourself from others (especially from your competitors) and make people become attached in some way to your figure and your message. And that's all that will lead you to rise as authoritative in a certain niche, will help you find a better job, more authoritative contacts and will lead potential customers and collaborators to want you as a partner, choosing you and your services among hundreds of others competitor.
4. Brand Positioning
Once you have created Your Personal Branding, you and your products or services will occupy a precise position within the minds of your users. This is exactly what we mean when we talk about Brand Positioning. Having great personal branding means being at the top of the mental scale of your audience. Not second, not third: First.
An example that struck me a lot about this topic is the one made by Al Ries and Jack Trout in their famous bestseller Positioning. The battle for your mind and that I want to propose again.
What is the name of the first person who walked on the moon? That's right, Neil Armstrong. Now tell me: what is the name of the second person who walked on the moon? Think now of the highest mountain in the world. Ok, it was easy: Everest. And what is the second highest mountain in the world? This works exactly the same in business as well.
Once a brand has positioned itself in the first position in the minds of consumers, it is very difficult to unseat it. Think energy drinks and you will think of RedBull. Think of fast food and you will think of Mc Donald's. This is because their brand positioning is specific, clear and - above all - distinctive from all their competitors. Always keep this in mind when creating Your Personal Branding.
5. How to create and develop Your Personal Branding
Creating your own personal branding is not something you can do at the table, overnight. What you can do today is to establish the strategy that will lead you to develop your personal branding over time.
Establish who You Are
The first step to building a solid and credible personal branding is precisely to stop and think about ourselves for a moment.
Stop and think hard about these questions. Who I am? What is my story? What results do I want to achieve and why? Who are the people who inspire me? Who is my audience? Who do I want to contact? What are the values I am advocating for? What is my mission? What are my passions? How will I get my message across? What are the channels I will use?
Don't underestimate what Google reports about you either. Do a little search on the search engine looking for your first and last name, look at the results, images and correlates and make sure there is nothing that could compromise your image and your credibility.
Create or strengthen Your Community
Choosing Your niche and creating a community that identifies with your ideals is a fundamental step so that your personal branding can be best expressed. The first thing to do when choosing your audience is to carefully evaluate whether the niche is really growing. This is because there is little point in investing in a niche that is going to disappear, don't you think?
A very simple way to see if the topic you want to bring forward has an interest over time or not is to do a search on Google Trends. Type in the word or keywords of your personal branding and check if in recent years it is a topic that is searched many times or not. Obviously this is definitely not the litmus test, but without a doubt it is a good start to understand if we are moving in the right direction and to understand if we have chosen the right market niche. Once you've established your niche, it's time to build Your Community. Also because if you don't have your fans, who follow you and believe what you believe in, your personal branding will have no influence.
And it will be thanks to your community that you will be able to create relationships with other people, transmit your values and increase your trust, in order to strengthen your brand at the same time.
Establish Your Content Marketing Strategy
Once you have all the elements, it's time to finally become a spokesperson for our message! To do this, it is essential to establish your content marketing strategy in advance. But where to start? If you have followed the points I have recommended, you now have an entire dossier in your hand that talks about your history, your vision, your ideals, your values, your mission. But not only that: you also know for sure the results you want to achieve. And that's where you need to start! Remember that, especially when it comes to personal branding, storytelling is something that shouldn't be missing from your strategy. Show who you are, where you are going, and show that you are really competent at what you say. Choose 2 or 3 channels, such as a blog and 2 social networks, decide the format you want to give to your communication and start producing content. And don't ask before you've given. Help your community, offer value and sincere skills. Only then will you be ready to reap all that you have sown.
Get your hands dirty
Lastly, the most important tip of all: to develop great personal branding you will really have to roll up your sleeves and get involved. Don't look for shortcuts, subterfuges, or ways to speed the growth of your personal branding. Your personal branding is given by what others think of you. If they notice that you are manipulating them, if you play dirty or are not sincere, they will notice and turn their backs on you. Don't forget that once your audience loses trust in you, regaining it will be very difficult if not impossible. Lincoln once said, "You can fool everyone for some time and someone forever, but you can't fool everyone forever." It was 1858 and, after almost 200 years, his words are still a great truth.
We have come to the end of this article on personal branding. We have explained what it is, how it is created and why building solid personal branding is really essential to boost your business. I really hope I have clarified your doubts and questions and - why not? - maybe I have given you some useful ideas to create or improve your personal branding even more! But now I pass the ball to you. Do you already have personal branding? How did you develop it? What is your mission? Tell me your experience in the comments!
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