In today’s world, creating a unique and interesting personal brand is vital to your career success. Yes, your resume and cover letter are still important – but companies are gradually placing higher importance on who you are as a person, opposed to what you have done in the past. With that being said, start thinking of yourself as a brand. What do you want people to think of when they hear your name? What do people associate with your name? Once you begin to think of yourself as a brand you can determine what you need to do to cultivate and polish your personal brand.
A great first step in perfecting your personal brand is to develop your own personal website or blog. Use this website as a freedom of expression – your website doesn’t necessarily have to be career-focused. You could develop a food blog, fashion website, or anything in between. What matters is that through this website or blog someone can see who you are – your personality, your strengths, and your values. Cleaning up your social media accounts is also extremely important. Your personal brand is affected by what you portray on your social media, so make sure that your social media and personal brand coexist and compliment one another.
Your personal brand should also show that you are continuously growing and improving. Become an expert in your field – take classes, get unique certifications, and promote your accomplishments. People will notice that you are striving to be the best version of yourself that you can be, which will work to your advantage when others speak of you. Nothing is more powerful in building your personal brand than what your network of contacts say about you and your set of skills, education, and accomplishments.
What may be the most important element when developing a personal brand is differentiation. In order to stand out, you must differentiate yourself. What do you do better than your competitors? What do you do that is valuable and unique? What are you most proud of? If you’re going to have a personal brand, you have to become relentlessly focused on what you do better than your competitors, what adds value, and what you are most proud of.
Lastly, make sure you promote yourself! If you have an amazing personal brand, make sure people know about it. Link your personal website to your LinkedIn, Facebook, and other social media accounts. As the old saying goes, “If you got it, flaunt it!” Having a unique personal brand is essential for your success, so tell people about it. Once you have mastered your personal brand, check out our website and see what opportunities await!