Personal Brand

Personal Branding: When You Google Your Name, What Comes Up?

Are you looking to advance your career? Then you definitely want your potential employee to associate your personal brand with something that he/she needs in their team.

Are  you looking to grow sales for your company? Then you want prospects to associate your personal brand with a feeling of trust, long-term success, and satisfaction.

How To build your personal Brand?

Step 1. Tell Your Story

In the future, the most successful people will be those who understand the importance of telling their story as they want it to be told. Long gone are the days when you could afford to leave your brand to chance. As recruiters increasingly depend on Google to study job applicants, there has never been a better time to give your brand the attention it deserves. To tell your story, ask yourself these questions:

  • What do I want to be known for?
  • What are my unique traits?
  • What are my core values?
  • What will help me stand out from the crowd?
  • What are my personal skills and strengths?

To get really clear about you story, consider using the ‘elevator-pitch’ formulae e.g, I do x for people so that they can y. Most importantly, you can have this information always displayed on your personal website such that it is always available for prospects and recruiters round the clock.

Step 2. Audit Your Presence Online

When you Google your name, what comes up?  To know the gap between your ideal personal and the brand your presently have, consider having an honest and frank discussion with friends and colleagues about your online presence. Then, create a plan for resolving those discrepancies by:

  • creating new content (blog posts on your personal website related to your work experience or passion)
  • Deleting some content e.g (embarrassing photos, professionally damaging assertions)
  • Updating old profiles ( to reflect current jobs and your optimal online persona)
  • Make other content private ( e.g off-brand your Facebook posts)
  • Open new accounts ( e.g open a contributors account with a popular blog that you like)

 Step 3. Create or Review your LinkedIn Profile

Although there are several social networks out there that you can join, LinkedIn is the one you need to focus on when building your personal brand. Here some quick tips for optimizing your LinkedIn profile:

  • Get a professional photo
  • Write a clear summary
  • Customize your headline
  • Describe each of your past and current positions
  • Get recommendations from past employers
  • Add your best skills
  • Include your contacts including your personal website URL.

Step 4. Claim your Space in The Digital Sphere

Although there are rumors that Twitter may be going down, you can still make the most of it today. Not only will it help you stay on top of the latest news, but tweeting links that lead to your blog, may also be a great way to establish yourself as an expert in your field while driving recruiters and prospects back to your personal website.

Step 5. Create a personal Website

When you have a personal website for your brand, you achieve the following goals;

  • Establish yourself as an expert
  • Build your network of influence
  • Demonstrate your credibility and build trust
  • Drive leads from your personal network

Having a personal website simply puts you out there in the best light. Plus, it doesn’t have to be anything fancy, just a few pages with your bio, C.V, contact details and links to your social media accounts. You can try WordPress, Wix, or Weebly for free websites or you can hire professionals like Legibra Solutions to develop and design your personal website. (Check out what Legibra did for Mwalimu Rachel’s personal brand here http://mwalimurachel.com/ .)

Step 6. Get a professional Email Address

Your email address is crucial to your personal branding. It is your first impression. Having an inappropriate email address like shiksmsupa@email.com or yulefisi@zahoo.com is the same as walking to an interview in your pajamas- so unprofessional. Having a professional email shows that you are committed to your passion. At the minimum, you should have a Gmail account. Better yet, you could secure your own domain name e.g mercy@myskill.co.ke

Step 7. Produce valuable content

It’s nice to have a presence on relevant social media platforms but if you stop there how are people going to find you? You can start by commenting on and sharing other people’s content. Then, if you enjoy writing, you can add a blog to your personal website or if you enjoy talking, you can add a podcast. All in all, you need to be the one telling your story and not the other way round.

Dear reader, this is the digital age, there is no room for being another face in the crowd. You have to stand out from the competition. You can only achieve this by creating a recognizable personal brand.

Are you in control of your brand? What tools have you used to establish your personal brand? Please share in the comment sections below.

 

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