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Tips On Building Your Personal Brand

Personal branding can be one of the most successful forms of marketing and branding out there. Just take a look at Kylie Jenner and the Kardashians. Soon to become billionaires they have utilized personal branding to become one of the most popular and well-known images in the world.

#1 Online Portfolio

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It is important to have an online portfolio which acts as a multimedia resume. The online portfolio can demonstrate your skills and abilities, competencies, provide more background on you as a person, and allows you to control the conversation about yourself. An online portfolio can include your resume, work you have done, recommendations, links to your social accounts, articles and studies you have written, and even photographs with important people. Unlike a paper resume, an online portfolio allows you to showcase your actual work which words alone cannot do in a resume.

Contributors: Andrew Selepak from ASelepak

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#2 Content Sharing

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Effective content can inspire and attract a lot of users who search and surf the web. So sharing your content online is the top most important thing to building your personal brand.

Contributors: Savitha Sampath from TacitKey

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#3 Identify Your Platform On To Social Media

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You may have a website of your own. Identify the right platform where your target audience spends most of their time. If your target audience spends most of their time on Linkedin and if you are posting only on your Facebook page, then you cannot successfully build your personal brand.

Contributors: Savitha Sampath from TacitKey

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#4 Identify Your Target Audience

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Identifying a right audience is another important step to build your personal brand. You can focus on what their problem is and come up with a solution.

Contributors: Savitha Sampath from TacitKey

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#5 Walk The Walk, Talk The Talk

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The difference between brands that are trusted and those that are not is honesty. Brands that do what they promise (no matter how small the promise) are perceived as honest companies. Do not make idle promises – your customers will notice.

Contributors: Chad Zollinger from Best Company 

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#6 Start By Understanding Your Reason For Action And Objectives

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Are you building your brand to change perception? Earn promotion? Gain consideration by other prospective clients or employers?

Do a stakeholder analysis, prioritizing your target audiences and get as specific as possible. Saying that you want to target your customer base is too broad. Saying that you want to target women 18-24 in the Chicagoland area who have one child is much more specific and actionable.

Do a perceptual gap analysis to gauge how the audience perceives you today, how you want to be perceived and the gaps. Actions will naturally fall out of it. Develop a unique value proposition that clearly states who you are, what you do, what is unique to your strategy and adjectives that describe your approach. Use that value proposition as your elevator speech, social media summaries, the basis for your online and hard copy collateral (biography, resume). A consistent story is the heart and soul of your personal brand.

Contributors: Perri Richman from Brand You

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#7 Be Proactive

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Building a brand does not happen by the timid. You must make an intentional effort that is strategic.

Contributors: John Crossman from John Crossman

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#8 Be Consistent

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Building a brand takes time. You need to make daily efforts.

Contributors: John Crossman from John Crossman

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#9 Help Others

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Do all you can to help others in building their brands. Be an encourager and cheerleader.

Contributors: John Crossman from John Crossman

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#10 Be Authentic

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As you already know, it's important that people perceive a business as genuine. The same applies to people. Remember, trust is much more difficult to earn after it has been lost.

Contributors: Kristine Gobbo from Spectrum Public Relations

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#11 Develop A Strategy

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Produce original content, network both within and outside your industry, and build an online presence, including via social media. Develop a thought leadership strategy. This will help you to reach your target audience and gain loyal followers.

Contributors: Kristine Gobbo from Spectrum Public Relations

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#12 Speaking Engagements

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Now is the time. Get your foot in the door and share your expertise.

Contributors: Kristine Gobbo from Spectrum Public Relations

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#13 Use Simple Language

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I searched for a way to describe myself for many years.  In the end it came down to using the simplest language to explain what I am and what I do in the clearest terms.  Fancy, catchy slogans only called attention to themselves and did not generate the instant connection I was looking for between myself and my audience. 

Contributors: Adam Cole from A Jazz Musician Who Writes Books

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#14 Consistency Across Platforms

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To improve the opportunity to be discovered and reduce confusion when others search for information about you online, be consistent with your name, tagline, photos, language (formal v. informal) and skills across social media and digital platforms. Change the content by platform to show you understand different audiences and showcase depth of your brand.

Contributors: Margaret Rakus from Cabrini Univeristy

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#15 Cohesion Over Cool

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Visually building a brand is easy in the age of Instagram. When someone sees you anywhere on the web, they have to be able to look at that and say that's you no matter what they're looking at. Fonts have to be the same, color pallets have to work together, and the tone has to match perfectly. Never post something just because you think it's cool. It has to be your style. 

Contributors: Daniel Parish from Growella

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#16 Utilise LinkedIn

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LinkedIn is the top social media platform for businesses and professionals, so it’s key that you’re on there as well if you want to establish yourself as an industry professional. Keep your profile up-to-date – don’t be afraid to brag! - and use it to frequently post interesting, industry-relevant content – this will help you build a reputation as an expert in your particular area, making you and your personal brand more well-known. Engage with content that others create as well, as it will increase awareness of your brand and expertise – so comment on and share posts that you find interesting, help others if they have questions, and give recommendations! 

Contributors: Ross Davies from Strafe Creative

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#17 Your Personality Becomes Your Brand

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  1. Remember, your personality becomes your brand. It is important to preserve your authenticity because if you don't, your followers will quickly lose interest.
  2. Don't try to be someone else!
  3. Be sure your logo represents you. Your logo, in particular, is a distilled drop of your entire visual brand into one iconic, powerful mark meant to entice and inspire. Are you a cute and sweet valley girl? Use a logo that is delicate and girly. Are you a badass CEO that may occasionally drop the f-bomb? Use a logo that conveys ruggedness. Take the time to really figure out your brand's mood before coming to a final decision on the logo
  4. Colours convey mood! You may have heard a little about colour psychology, especially when it comes to marketing and branding. You may, for instance, be aware that red often evokes feelings of passion or anger, green for health, and blue can show serenity. So a yoga studio probably wouldn't want to use red, and a beard oil company wouldn't want to use pink!
  5. Great headshots are often overlooked; Your headshots are often times the first impression people get of you, especially in this increasingly web-based life. Hiring a professional photographer to supply you with not only headshots, but lifestyle photography can make or break your following. Never underestimate the power of lifestyle photos!

Contributors: Kimberly Cruickshanks from Fuze Branding

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#18 Your Story Is Your Compass

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At its core, a personal brand is just a vehicle for delivering a story about you to the world. Your story will drive everything you do—the way you communicate with customers, the vibe of your logo, the content you create, etc. So take some consider which elements of your personal story you want to define you to your audience . . . and then highlight those elements consistently, always, in everything you do. 

Contributors: Alexie Basil from SPACE K9

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#19 Your DNA

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The quickest way to develop your personal brand is to use Tom Peters' DNA Acronym: 

  • D: Dependable - what can people depend on you for? 
  • N: Novel - what's novel about you and unique compared to others who do what you do? 
  • A: Attitude - how do you show up? Are you a big energy? Always go the extra mile? A thoughtful, professorial type? 

It's a great shorthand to use when putting together your first draft. Then speak to co-workers, customers, vendors, all your stakeholders and ask them these 3 questions. This will help you refine and validate your brand. 

Contributors: Elene Cafasso from Enerpace, Inc

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#20 Dressing For Success

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Dressing for success is still a relevant concept, but mostly in the context of your professional brand. Your appearance, personality and how you carry yourself still play a key role in that hard-to-define leadership presence or executive presence. Clothes are a part of it.

You should dress like the folks around you. If everyone in your workplace has a tattoo visible, no problem. But if you're the only one with multiple piercings and you want to get ahead, it could be a potential problem. If you interface with clients, you want to dress in a way that makes them comfortable. And the old maxim of dressing for the job you want still holds too!

Contributors: Elene Cafasso from Enerpace, Inc.

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#21 Get A Mentor

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Young leaders need a good mentor who can coach them on immature habits - like hair twirling, saying like in every sentence or other physical/verbal habits which diminish their professional brand. 

Contributors: Elene Cafasso from Enerpace, Inc

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#22 The 3 Adjectives

Think about the top 3 adjectives that you want people to describe you. Words you want to be remembered by. Then, only post things on social media that matches at least one of those. If something doesn't match at least one, don't do it, don't share it, don't say it.

Contributors: Karla Singson from KarlaSingson

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#23 Get Verified

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Ok, so one thing you absolutely should be doing: applying for a verified Twitter profile. Rightly or wrongly, people see those blue checkmarks as signs of authority, instead of what Twitter intends them to be (signs of authenticity). Anyone who is part of a consumer facing business should be elgibile and I'm sure that spending more time on the platform helps in that regard. Plus, Google tends to love the platform in search results and we all know that we get Googled pretty often these days. 

Contributors: Mark Aselstine from Uncorked Ventures Wine Club

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#24 Clarify Your Vision

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If you're an entrepreneur, it's easy to go all in without breaking down the proper steps. Put a business plan together and invest in a brand style guide and launch platforms (website, social channels, email newsletter, etc.) that reflects you and your business.

Contributors: Jessica Zweig from Simply Be Agency

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#25 Find Your Tribe

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It is vital to surround yourself with people who lift you up, inspire, and support you, even when things get tough. This not only includes your team at work, but your friends, colleagues, and clients. Being surrounded by positive, driven, and like-minded people raises your entire bar and increases your vibration. 3. Invest in coaching. Find the experts in your field and learn everything you can about their successes, failures, and processes. Read books. Read trade magazines. Go to events and watch speakers. If you want to be a pro and stay on your game, make sure that higher education is an ongoing practice as well. It really does give you an edge and allows you to stay relevant in a world saturated with experts.

Contributors: Jessica Zweig from Simply Be Agency

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#26 Dare To Disagree

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In my experience, the more value you provide for your brand's consumers, whether they're social media followers or a clientele, the easier it is to organically build that brand. That value you provide varies depending on your brand; it could range from professional advice to emotional content (humor has worked best for me). However, avoid being vague and safe; controversy elicits attention. Don't be afraid to speak your mind and subsequently engage your audience in a meaningful conversation--civil disagreement builds trust and conveys your brand's integrity. Be bold enough to disagree with your audience; the risk of upsetting them is offset by the potential to enhance your brand's identity, integrity, and following.

Contributors: Pujit Mehrotra from Agnimurus Inc.

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#27 Find Your Voice

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If you can, down to the colors, font & theme to use consistently. For example, look at uber. They ran a campaign of #backseatview and their photos show the #backseatviews of their audience. It's great because this says a lot for them, without even really typing a caption.

Contributors: Malorie Yagelski from Mastery By Mal 

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#28 Don’t Go MIA

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Do your best to not drop off the map for a long time, your audience will legitimately forget about you. Theres a large amount of people and they probably all follow a lot of people. Don't let yourself get washed out because you went inactive. If you think you'll be inactive, make a post about it and why.

Contributors: Malorie Yagelski from Mastery By Mal 

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#29 Create A Funnel

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Depending on your niche, create a system of giving away free value. Are you a lifestyle blogger? Create some cool free PDFs to give out to people. Give them out in exchange of their email, then do some email marketing to get them immersed not only on Instagram but a newsletter as well. Make sure to have unique content on both.

Contributors: Malorie Yagelski from Mastery By Mal 

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#30 The Power of Podcasting to Build Your Brand

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To build a personal brand, you must focus on the know, like, and trust factors of yourself and your brand. The unique ability of podcasts to connect with individual audience members give you an incredible opportunity to let people get to know, like, and trust you. Additionally, podcasts are challenging to do well and enable you to stand to out from your competitors with a remarkable audio experience. You will then develop loyal, connected audience members that are primed to deliver the results you’re aiming for.

Contributors: Jon Nastor from Hack the Entrepreneur

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#31 Brand and Emotion

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Building your personal brand first takes understanding what your brand really feels like. Not just, what you do to define what your brand is, but understanding how what you do actually impacts people, makes them feel. Lean into that when you are trying to build your personal brand and you will be far ahead of the other brands that simply advertise what they do. For instance, I work for an agency, Power Digital, that drives online revenue. Yes, that’s what we do for our clients, but we in turn end up making clients feel accomplished, driven, excited and proud of our partnership. We market those feelings. Think about that when you are looking to build out your personal brand whether by writing thought leadership columns, pitching your name to editors or podcast owners, creating social pages and promoting them or simply sharing about your brand through word of mouth.

Contributors: Kate Lobel from Power Digital Marketing

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#32 Build Your Brand with Style: Name

Brittany Snow Chloe GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Discover & share this Pitch Perfect GIF with everyone you know. GIPHY is how you search, share, discover, and create GIFs.

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Choose a name that stands out and is timeless and not trendy. When choosing a brand name it is representative of the product or service you are selling and the name must resound with the experience your clients are going to have using it. 

Contributors: Laureen Edelson from Luxury Concepts llc. 

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#33 Brand Experience

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People don’t buy products or services; they buy the experience associated with that product or service. Your brand needs to evoke an emotional connection. For example, show what they would feel like wearing your perfume. 

Contributors: Laureen Edelson from Luxury Concepts llc. 

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#34 Make A Personal Branding Vision Board

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I know this sounds cheesy, but find images and 1-2 quotes that evoke the feeling you want to project. Whenever you post to social media or get ready for your next public speaking event, take a glance at your vision board. Is your post consistent with that feeling?

Contributors: Mandy Snell from FocalPoint Coaching of Virginia 

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#35 Use Branded Links

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Branded links allow you to put your name on all the links you share online. This is great for building awareness and visibility for your personal brand. But you can also use new TLDs or keywords after the slash to create a clear connection between your name and the industry you work in. Instead of a .com, an artist could use .studio or a financial advisor could use .finance. It looks professional and anyone who connects with you on social will come to associate your name with what you do. This is ideal, as your name will be to the fore of their mind when they are looking for someone with skills in your niche. Branded links are also short, memorable and easy to pronounce, which makes them great for reading out loud at events or while networking. They are also ideal for business cards, because they are easy to type out.

Contributors: Louisa McGrath from Rebrandly 

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#36 Know How To Introduce Yourself

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Prepare a 30-second speech to introduce yourself to others. Think through the key things you want people to know about you and practice it so it comes easily. When networking, hit the high points of your story with a concise presentation. You want their take away to be the most important highlights about you and how you want them to remember you.

Contributors: Justin Lavelle from PeopleLooker

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#37 Perfection Is Not Achievable

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Building your brand will not be a flawless endeavor. You're going to make typos, you're going to have haters and trolls, you're going to have self doubt - my advice? Don't worry about any of it! Never let perfection stand in the way of you pushing out your personal brand message. You're gonna be better for it in the end.

Contributors: Erin Essex from ErinEssex

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monsterid

Written by Zak Parker

Article Writer, Pianist, Internet Marketing Enthusiast; I delve into a variety of creative mediums and take advantage of what they have to offer. With experience in SEO, Dropshipping, Affiliate Marketing and Advertising, I'm a plethora of general marketing knowledge and enjoy helping those new to the game get their foot through the door. I'm always excited to hear of the latest method, or if the chance presents itself, create my own.

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