Developing your personal brand means establishing a good reputation, and influencing those around you. It takes years to build a reputation and it’s a lot of work to manage one, but it’s important if you want to build trust in your audience. This is why personal branding is crucial – your personal brand is your identity. A strong personal brand can provide you with greater credibility, higher perceived value and a way to differentiate yourself from your competition. Here are five steps to help you start building your personal brand:
Establish Your Values
Your values are the cornerstone of your character. You might value loyalty, status or compassion – think about who you are and what’s important to you. Your values should always dictate your actions; this is how you build trust and grow your brand.
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Connect With A Mentor
Mentors can help you understand which direction it’s best to go in, especially if you haven’t had much experience. They can guide you and provide advice, but they can also show you what not to do. If you’re serious about building your personal brand, you need to get a mentor and establish a plan.
Your personal brand is about your audience as much as it is about you. Think about what you can bring to the table, consider your values and how they can be used to shape people’s perceptions about you. Are you reliable? Friendly? Approachable? Make sure you communicate this through your writing and the way you speak. Think about the words you use and the image you portray.
Have A Platform
Create a website and stay active on social media – but don’t use these to “sell” yourself or your services. Instead, use then to help people, to provide them with information they are looking for. Your website could be a blog, or you could create a YouTube channel where you speak on camera. Whatever you’re comfortable with is what’s going to work for you. If you enjoy public speaking, this is one of the best ways to promote yourself and build your brand. Start looking for opportunities to speak or be a guest speaker and get your name out there.
The thing about brands is that they are unique – and it’s the same with your personal brand. You are an individual with your own strengths and weaknesses, and that’s what your brand should be. You can have idols and people to look up to, but it’s important to stay true to who you are, and align with the best version of yourself. With the skills you offer, you might want to figure out some ways that you are different from the competition, maybe you have more experience, or are the most efficient? Make sure you show people how you are different from the rest.
Building a personal brand takes time, so it’s always good to keep an eye out for opportunities where you can help people and put yourself out there. After a while, people will begin to associate you with the qualities you are striving for, and your personal brand will start to take form.