You know that you need a strong personal brand to succeed today, but how do you go about establishing one? Personal branding is a long-term strategy that pays off down the road, but you have to start somewhere. Here are 8 ideas on how to creatively set yourself apart from the herd:
Write a Blog
Writing a blog is the absolute best way to brand yourself online. It allows you to share your expertise, show your personality, and get your fans involved. These are all essentials for branding yourself and a blog lets you kill all of those birds with one stone.
Signature Words, Phrases, and Taglines
Sit down and try to write a short sentence or simple phrase that communicates to people exactly what you do and how you benefit them. This is what’s known in the marketing world as a ‘tagline.’ For example, if you’re an SEO expert, you might write something like, ‘I get you found online.’ It serves both purposes – telling what you do and emphasizing benefits.
Your Brand Images and Photos
Like a logo, a brand photo instantly identifies you. It also gives people a good first impression which might be the only one they get. Make sure that you look good in the picture and that you’re smiling if you want to convey a friendly image. Be consistent with your image, using it everywhere you go. You might consider making a few different versions; for example, a more professional suit-and-tie picture for LinkedIn and something more relaxed for Facebook.
Set up an Event Schedule
Get involved and start hosting regular events. Events show people that you’re passionate about what you do and it’s a great way to get them involved directly in your brand. Events are also a wonderful way to network. Online you can do podcasts and webinars. Both are cheap options that offer global reach.
Speak to Groups
Look around for opportunities to speak in front of groups. When you’re a recognized speaker, this boosts your credibility and gives you instant expert status. Like hosting events, it also gives you a chance to network. If you’re not a great public speaker, don’t worry; a little practice will turn you into a confident speaker quickly.
Offer coaching and mentoring, even if you don’t get paid well for it. This adds immensely to peoples’ perception of you as an expert. If you can teach others about your subject matter, this shows that you really know your stuff.
Create an Infographic
Infographics are all the rage now and you can create one that’s all about you. Your own personal brand infographic is like a visual resume. There are online tools that you can use to create your own infographic cheaply and easily.
Tell a Compelling Story
People love a good story and it’s an important component to your branding. For example, you’re a city kid who grew up poor and then discovered Internet Marketing. Or, you’re a stay-at-home mom who does freelance writing. A unique story about how you got here makes your brand more memorable and helps you to stand out. Remember that the purpose of all of your branding efforts is to rise above the noise and set yourself apart from everybody else. Use these creative methods to show how you’re different and the unique value you bring to what you do. Branding really takes off when your personal passion comes through, so let it shine.