Creating a personal brand is incredibly valuable. And that applies to you and your professional persona, too.
Think about it: we’re all familiar with popular brands like Nike or Coca-Cola. But have you ever thought about your own personal brand?
Whether you’re aware of it or not, you already have a personal brand. The only question is whether you’re taking ownership of it and using it to your advantage.
Wondering how to build a personal brand that benefits yourself and your business?
We’ve got you covered.
What is a Personal Brand?
Though connected, a personal brand isn’t the same as your reputation. Your reputation is a result of your actions and ethics. Your brand, however, is something strategic and measured—you decide what goes into your brand image that people see.
Your personal brand:
- Is composed of publicly-available information.
- Spans both your online and in-person presence—what people see on the internet is what they should see in person.
- Can be developed through strategic tactics (more on that below).
When it comes down to it, your personal brand is just you. You don’t need to “invent” a brand. Focus on being who you are and then strategically project that image publicly.
Marketing and PR professional Adam Ritchie said it this way: “The first word in the phrase, ‘personal brand’ is ‘personal.’ Now add an ‘ity’ to it, drop the ‘brand’ and that’s what it really means. That’s the secret.”
Why Your Personal Brand Matters
Your personal brand matters because it lets people know what to expect when they work with you or your business. A strong personal brand does a few things:
- Builds trust with your clients or customers through consistency.
- Demonstrates authenticity about who you are and what you’re about.
- Establishes you as an expert or thought leader in your industry.
- Manages your online presence, combating misinformation or negativity directed towards you.
Tactics to Build a Personal Brand
Let’s bring this all down to ground level. How do you start creating your personal brand? Here are a few effective tactics you can use to increase your brand visibility.
LinkedIn is one of the most obvious platforms to build your personal brand as a professional. It’s where you can network and connect with others in your industry and establish yourself as a thought leader.
But to really get the most out of LinkedIn, make sure you’re using its full capabilities:
- Regularly post and create content so that others can engage with your ideas.
- Comment, like, and share what you find valuable or useful.
- Form genuine connections and reach out via InMail.
- Add personality to your profile by filling out all sections, choosing a cover photo that speaks to your brand, and bringing in humor or creativity.
Speaking opportunities build your personal brand by establishing you as an expert and leader in your industry. They also increase your visibility and networking opportunities.
There are a few types of speaking opportunities to consider:
- Guest on industry-specific podcasts.
- Participate in social media live streams.
- Speak at community and networking events.
- Present at conferences and seminars.
- Host “lunch and learn” or other training events.
As you build your brand and network with others in your industry, these opportunities will start to come up. You don’t have to wait for them to come to you, though. If you have something to share and think it’s a good fit—reach out to the organizers and ask to be part of it.
Launch Workplaces always has a line-up of networking events and webinars at our various locations, including many informative lunch & learns. Networking and building a professional community is one of many advantages of coworking spaces and can open up opportunities to speak and present as well.
Similar to speaking opportunities, publishing content is an excellent way to build your credibility and establish yourself as a thought leader in the space. There are a few ways to do it:
- Create a blog.
- Be a guest on a podcast, or even start your own podcast.
- Publish a book, eBook, or lead magnet about your industry.
- Be a guest writer for industry-relevant publications, blogs, or websites.
- Post and write on LinkedIn.
- Send out a regular email newsletter.
This helps establish your personal brand because your audience will learn more about you through the ideas and knowledge you share.
While you don’t need to be on every platform every day, social media is an important part of building a personal brand. Social media is the easiest way to interact with people and share your message on a broad scale. Here are a few tips:
- Focus on the right platform. Match the platform with your brand. For example, TikTok might work for a fun and playful personal brand but feel off-brand for someone who works primarily with older generations.
- Keep it consistent. Try to post regularly so that people are used to seeing you and your content. Create a content calendar for a few days or weeks in advance and then batch-create your content so you’re not glued to the phone all day. Consistency also applies to your brand voice, image, and tone. A high-quality virtual assistant is a good option for busy professionals who need social media support.
- Be authentic. Go back to the quote from Adam Ritchie—your brand is your personality… It’s you. So keep things real, keep things authentic, and people will want to hear more from you.
Social media is a great way to share your story and allow others to see a glimpse into your life. It’s one of the fastest ways to grow connections and can be leveraged into other opportunities like speaking engagements or publishing opportunities.
Your personal brand doesn’t have to be complicated. It’s simply a public reflection of who you are and a way to tell others why they should trust and work with you. It’s an impactful way to stay top of mind and grow your business.
Your workspace contributes to your personal brand and the way your business is perceived by your clients. So, if you’re looking for an elevated and professional office space, book a tour of your local Launch Workplace today.