Personal branding has become a latter day buzzwords and yet it remains completely misunderstood. There are a few questions I would like to address:
Does everyone have a personal brand?
Yes. It was branding guru Tom Peters (1997) who launched the Personal Branding movement with an essay published in Fast Company under the title “The Brand Called You. What it created was an excitement unlike any other in the marketing fraternity. There was for the first in 60years a new discipline that marketers could look to research, study and master.
What is now common cause is that personal branding is for everyone who takes themselves seriously as a knowledge professional. So, whilst everyone has a personal brand – the truth is that everyone that is a knowledge professional has a personal brand. If you have a particular technical and knowledge expertise you too have a personal brand. The real question is, “how many people get touched and impacted by your personal brand”. Do you have scale or potency?
2. How do you create & manage your personal brand reputation?
Today, the social media networks make it easier for us to create and manage our public perceptions of us. A personal brand is something you can create from scratch with a few easy steps. Divide a page into 3-parts and at the top of each write Family, Finance, Fitness. Now ask yourself the following questions:
What do I want to represent? (Personal brand mission)
How do I want to be remembered? (Personal Brand Statement)
What do I fundamentally believe about the world and my role in it? (Over-arching personal brand strategy)
What knowledge do I have that can benefit others? (Proprietary advantage)
What excites me?
Once you have answered these questions you have a better more nuanced sense of who you are and what turns you on. Its now easier to look to carve your niche in the world.
3. Is personal branding not only famed celebrities and corporate executives?
No. Eve the drunkard in Alexander township ( was raised in this hood ) has a personal brand. His brand might be clear only to the people within his locus of influence and physical parameters but he has a brand nonetheless. So your focus should not be on whether or not you have a brand but rather to whom that brand is currently illustrated. Brand are illustrations and promises made by products. So ask yourself:
Who do I want to be relevant to?
What do I want them to think, feel and say about me (when I am not in the room)?
4. Where do you start?
The hardest part of any strategy is not the conceptualisation but the execution. Often the difference between mastery and mediocrity lies in execution. So here are the golden rules for coming up with an execution plan that works:
Set the target timeline. *Remember if it doesn’t have a date, it aint gonna happen*
Set your matrix on how you will measure the outcomes you want and that date and time.
Get started Good People