Nowadays, everyone is talking about personal branding, wanting to build one. People around the world have understood the importance and advantages of personal branding. It is not just about companies becoming popular. An individual becoming a brand himself is way more important and pays off in the long run. Personal branding is about helping yourself and taking control of your life by giving it a clear direction. Remember the quote by Oscar Wilde, “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
What is Personal Branding?
The concept of personal branding has evolved from the self-improvement theory in which an individual is all focused on getting improved at a particular skill and making an impression on the other’s mind that he/she is great at it. It all refers to an individuals ongoing process of becoming an expert at something they are passionate about and spreading the word about, sharing their immense knowledge about the particular skill they have.
The term was first used and discussed in the 1997 in an article “A Brand Called You” by Tom Peters in Fast Magazine. In this article, Tom states, “Regardless of age, regardless of position, regardless of the business we happen to be in, all of us need to understand the importance of branding. We are CEOs of our own companies: Me Inc.”
Social media, guest blogging, and many contributing platforms are helping people build their personal brand online. But it’s not only restricted to online presence. Speaking at an event, meeting people offline and introducing yourself in a professional way add up to your personal branding journey.
Many people misunderstand the difference between personal branding and self-promotion to some extent. Personal branding may not be necessarily about self-promotion and boasting about yourself. Instead, a personal brand helps you define the type of person you want to be.
The Importance of Personal Branding
Personal branding takes years of hard work and patience. Below, I have listed six reasons why personal branding is important:
- Industry Recognition: Getting known in the industry you belong to is the best thing that ever could happen to you. You start attracting people that tend to think like you. At this point, your opinions matter a lot.
- Competitive Advantage: Personal branding gives you a competitive advantage over others in your field and helps you win. People tend to believe you more. You have better credibility.
- Being Yourself: Personal branding helps you be yourself and do what you love. You will also get paid for what you are excellent at, and this will further inspire you to do more of what you love.
- Reputation: Personal branding aids your reputation since people start noticing you because of your genuine expertise and respect you for helping them with your suggestions.
- Confidence: Personal branding gives you tremendous confidence in life. You don’t have to depend on your external job when you have a strong presence for yourself.
- A Great Support: Personal branding assists you with your entrepreneurial journey, and you can quickly gain initial traction for your product or service since you have that credibility and a good follower base already.
Tips on Creating Your Personal Brand
Becoming a brand that people recognize is not that easy. You need to know some important aspects while creating the brand called ‘you.’
- The first thing is to know yourself better and what interests you. Figure out what you are truly passionate about.
- Once you know what you are truly passionate about, take a step ahead and start hustling. Build expertise around your passion.
- Start connecting with influential people in your industry whose passion resonates with yours and follow them. Carefully observe what they do. Get to know some brilliant minds in your interest area and strike a conversation. Ask for suggestions.
- Join vibrant and relevant groups on social media platforms and share your opinion whenever you get an opportunity.
- Be present on all the possible social media platforms that matter to your industry and start sharing your valuable thoughts whenever necessary. The aim is to build a true follower base for yourself.
- Have a professional website of your own and start writing original and highly attractive articles that people would love to like and share. Promote your articles online.
- Be consistent and start approaching different publishing platforms to publish your articles. Try till you succeed. It will help you Increase your reach and audience.
- Small things matter. Join platforms like Quora and start helping others who are in need through your suggestions/answers. This will help you climb the self-branding ladder.
Creating a personal brand requires a lot of hard work and patience. Pure passion and consistency in becoming an expert matter a lot. For some people, it takes many years to create an image in people’s mind about their expertise. But once you create a place for yourself and build a reliable follower base, there is no one to stop you. You should be willing to give more time to enrich yourself with exceptional knowledge so that you can see an improved version of yourself every day. Personal branding gives you an edge, period.
Start imagining you as your own brand. Want to be something big and leave your mark on the planet earth? Start investing in yourself today to reap numerous benefits tomorrow.Opinions expressed here by Contributors are their own.