Know the untapped power of personal branding NOW.
Branding has become a ritual in the corporate world.
From beverage hunks to FMCG firms, all are striving to create a brand out of their business.
The traditional school of thought emphasized on brand building as a collective effort of employees.
But here’s a game changing question:
What if you can be a brand by yourself?
Sounds weird? Well, it isn’t in reality.
In this article, we are going to learn about:
+ What’s Personal Branding?
+ How to carve your Personal Brand?
+ Why go for Personal Branding?
WHAT’S PERSONAL BRANDING?
This concept was floated by Napoleon Hill in his ground breaking book ‘Think and Grow Rich’, wherein he endorsed the idea of leadership branding to bring success to the enterprise.
An Excerpt from the book ‘Think and Grow Rich’
In today’s times, we know this phenomenon by the name of ‘Personal Branding’.
“Personal branding, as the name suggests, is the process of creating a brand out of the person by promoting his/ her values and beliefs for which he/ she stands for.”
In simple terms, personal branding is basically about selling yourself to the public.
It is the ‘productization’ of the individual’s core value systems which in turn appeals to a section of the population.
Donald Trump, running for the US Presidential Elections 2016, is a towering example of personal branding.
Image by :Gage Skidmore
Donald Trump has a knack for naming his products by his surname,
Trump (e.g. Trump Tower).
This is a common thing to see personalities using their brand power to promote big businesses in a short span of time. (e.g. Brand Ambassadors)
However, creating a brand out of yourself and being your own Brand Ambassador takes time.
CARVE A BRAND OUT OF YOURSELF WITH THESE SIMPLE STEPS
1. KNOW YOURSELF
It’s very important to know your positives and negatives, your strengths and weaknesses, and the opportunities and threats arising out of them.
An easy way is to take a sheet of paper and pen down your strengths and weaknesses in different columns.
Once this is done, narrow down your vision to the specifics in strengths.
Mark those strengths/ hobbies/ area of interests which are pursued by very few people in your vicinity and among your friends.
E.g. Poetry writing, calligraphy etc.
Meanwhile, also focus on your positive and negative personality traits/ values.
If you find difficulty in getting the answers, talk to your family members or friends to guide you.
List the positive and negative values in another sheet of paper.
Study the market needs.
Draw parallels between your values and market needs.
Check whether your unique strengths and values can match up to the market expectations.
Please note that it’s preferable to cater to a niche market than to hunt for the whole pack.
3. DEVELOP A VISION
Pat yourself on the back.
Very few take the pains to go in depth and study the market requirements and create a bridge between values and needs.
The foundation is ready. It’s time to build a vision.
Your vision should be such that it has the capability to thwart the existing systems and transform the whole world.
Your mind must become a powerhouse of ideas to support your vision.
The vision must neglect short term gains. Instead, it should go for the long haul.
“Your vision must frighten you and please the world.”
Develop a vision which differentiates you from the clutter out there.
Think from a customer’s viewpoint and ask yourself:
+ “How is this guy (you) catering to my problems?”
+ “Does he seem like the same old firms out there?”
+ “Does he offer anything different?”
4. IF YOU WANT SOME, COME GET SOME!
An inspiring quote by John Cena.
Relationships aren’t one sided affairs. It requires giving with a promise of unconditionality.
Likewise, if you want to gain followers, you will have to invest your resources in them.
A common tactic of almost every personal branded celebrity is: Blogging.
“Content is the key to the locks of success.”
This is the best avenue for you to express your values and beliefs for which you stand for.
Create content regularly and try not to end up in the writer’s block.
Offer credible and realistic solutions to problems hounding the consumers.
Beware of what you put out in the public.
There may be situations where there will be clashes between ideologies.
If you end up on the wrong side, accept your mistake and humbly apologize.
But it gets worse when such mistakes prove fatal for your personal brand’s future.
Best way is to take a conservative view and avoid touching sensitive issues.
As of now:
- You have a strong vision.
- You have poured that vision into your content and solutions.
- And your content is absolutely outstanding!
Now is the time to take the big leap: Social Media.
For starters, create social media buttons on your blog.
Next, share these articles regularly on your social media pages.
If you are handling the above three platforms effectively, you may also venture into Instagram, Tumblr or Pinterest to expand your brand visibility.
Follow leaders in your industry and try to emulate their values.
This was all about online networking.
On the offline side, attend conferences and seminars which will expose you to a wide range of potential leads.
Speak in such events and create a lasting impression on the listeners.
Connect with the audience, interact with them, exchange business cards and a lead is in the process of becoming your full time customer.
Stay updated with the latest developments in your fields and adapt your solutions accordingly.
“Stagnancy is fatal.”
It’s the “Survival of the Fittest” even in the field of branding
WHY GO FOR PERSONAL BRANDING?
It’s a pertinent question.
We have always learnt that teamwork is the cornerstone of success.
But personal branding is all about an individual.
Then why to take the extra efforts to build a personal brand rather than coming together and carving a collective brand?
Here are some strong reasons:
1. MAKES A LEADER OUT OF YOU
Think about it.
The aura of personal branding gives you enough space to work out things and offer solutions in your own distinct way.
The best part is that unlike the sedentary 9 to 5 office jobs, this arena makes you the owner of your own destiny.
Flexibility, adaptability and credibility are the three huge upsides
for shaping a personal brand.
2. INSTILLS AN ENTREPRENEURIAL MINDSET
A wise entrepreneur:
+ Thinks long term
+ Thinks outside the box
+ Thinks positive
He brings his core values to play and conquers any unfavorable situation with his unique skills.
This is what personal branding is all about.
It makes an individual almost immune to pessimism and short sightedness.
3. A LION AMONG THE TIGERS
Your rivals will have:
+ pursued the same kind of education,
+ will have earned the same old – school degree,
+ would be flaunting the same value systems,
+ would be expressing the same vision,
+ and would be giving out the same solutions.
At the other end, you enter the ring with:
+ different educational qualifications
+ different degrees
+ different value systems
+ different vision in sync with market needs
+ different solutions which satisfies the market.
Rest would be history. Period.
Of course, personal branding is not a child’s play.
Like any other type of branding, it takes years and years to bloom into a forest of success.
So build your own roads, follow this guide and venture on the path of self – fulfillment. 🙂