Developing Your Personal Brand

You already have a personal brand: it’s the way that you’re perceived by your colleagues, potential employers and clients. But is it one that you want? Creating a successful personal branding strategy can help you address these concerns and be used to your advantage in your career. So, if you’ve ever wondered about how to create a successful branding strategy, read on to understand why personal branding is important and how to implement it in your professional life.

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Confident business executive with folded arms

In today’s competitive marketplace, the concept of a brand is not exclusive to major corporations. In fact, even as an employee, building a successful personal brand can help you distinguish yourself from the competition and appeal to your target audience of potential employers, colleagues and industry leaders, and clients. Create a personal brand that clearly demonstrates your value with the help of Adecco’s tips for developing your perfect personal brand.

Defining your personal brand

Business woman looking up ready to climb the success staircase

Developing your personal brand

Essentially, your personal brand shows clients, colleagues and potential hiring managers who you are and what matters most to you. A successful personal brand should accurately describe you, reflect your values and be honest and relatable. So, take the time to self-analyze. Know who you are and what you want from life.

You should also consider how you would like to be perceived, what your purpose is and your distinguishing beliefs. Look at your personal brand as the professional reputation you want to have with potential employers and clients alike. Use this exercise to identify and shape this reputation for your professional benefit.

A successful personal brand will:

  • Help you build trust with potential employers or clients.
  • Increase your perceived value.
  • Differentiate you from the competition.
  • Highlight your expertise within your industry.

Learn from these examples

Another tactic to up your personal branding game is to learn from others who’ve already created memorable and successful personal brands. One great personal branding example is Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group. Branson has built a reputation as an adventurer and philanthropist, in addition to an “idea man” and business guru. He is extremely active on social media platforms including Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter promoting his playful personal brand. This down-to-earth persona has helped Branson grow Virgin as a customer-focused business that consistently surpasses its competition.

A second example of successful personal branding is Jessica Alba, actress and founder of The Honest Company, who has used her personal brand to promote a business that provides parents with non-toxic childcare products and household items. Largely through Facebook and Instagram, Jessica Alba has branded herself as a loyal and trustworthy mother who you can depend on to recommend only the best products for the health and safety of your children.

In need of a few more personal branding tips?

  • Be authentic: Authenticity is essential to cultivating a successful personal brand. Your brand’s authenticity attracts your target audience and establishes you as a trustworthy source.
  • Know your voice: Maintain the same voice. Whether it’s your social media presence or personal communications, the vocabulary you use and the platforms on which you use it should remain consistent to continue projecting authenticity and competency.
  • Keep your message simple: A complex personal branding message is hard to maintain. Instead, opt for a simple message that portrays your personal branding values and can be promoted easily to your target audience.
  • Understand your audience: Who is your audience and why do they care about your branding message? By understanding your audience and the platforms they frequent, you can craft better content that promotes your message in the right places to the right people.
  • Be consistent: Consistency is key to maintaining credibility for your personal brand. Be sure to maintain consistency in content, images, tone and the platforms on which you promote your personal brand to help you maintain and build your target audience.

Managing a successful personal brand

Young man drawing a picture, a sketch of himself

Creating a successful personal branding strategy is an effective tool within your job search. So, after you’ve developed your strong personal brand, it’s time to ensure that it remains in front of your target audience. Build the time into your daily schedule to promote your personal brand.

Using social media to promote your brand

Creating a social media following is essential to developing a strong personal brand. Not only does it increase your visibility and allow you to promote your brand, it also enables conversations, allowing you to engage with like-minded professionals.

We recommend capitalizing on these four social media platforms within your personal branding strategy:

LinkedIn

Consider your LinkedIn profile as an extension of your personal brand. With over 610 million users in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide, LinkedIn is a powerful tool to find new opportunities, connect with professionals and prove your authority within your industry.

Develop your personal brand on LinkedIn by:

  • Connecting with new professionals.
  • Joining and participating in relevant groups.
  • Blogging about topics you know well with LinkedIn’s Publishing Platform.

Make the most of your network with the perfect LinkedIn profile powered by your personal brand.

Facebook

Reaching an astonishing 2.38 billion monthly active users, Facebook remains a popular and influential social networking website for both professional users and consumers alike. Highlight your personal brand by sharing a glimpse of what you’re like in person.

Develop your personal brand on Facebook by:

  • Completing your Facebook profile and sharing posts that are consistent with your personal brand.
  • Controlling your privacy settings to maintain a steady image that is true to your personal brand.
  • Being interesting and informative in your content and liking posts, photos and comments that are in line with your personal branding values.

Twitter

With 321 million monthly users, Twitter is the place to be for interesting conversations with your social network and news from all kinds of users.

Develop your personal brand on Twitter by:

  • Engaging your Twitter audience by keeping tweets short and using visuals.
  • Retweeting tweets that are relevant to your audience.
  • Following influencers and leaders from your industry.
  • Asking questions and connecting with retweets and replies.
  • Using hashtags to categorize tweets by keywords relevant to your industry and brand.

Instagram

Currently exceeding 1 billion monthly active users, Instagram is a visual social media platform that allows users to share and comment on images and videos. Capitalize on your personal brand by creating a compelling profile that actively posts curated and consistent content.

Develop your personal brand on Instagram by:

  • Being authentic to your personal brand.
  • Posting Instagram stories, photos or videos.
  • Setting up your full account and bio in-line with your personal branding strategy.
  • Finding people to follow who are relevant to your target audience or industry.
  • Creating insightful comments on relevant posts.

A few social media best practices

  • Sharing content: Sharing content is the primary method to promote your personal brand. Be sure to only share content that is relevant to your industry and is consistent with your brand’s values. Sharing content helps identify you as a thought leader within your industry and can be impressive to hiring managers looking to fill roles.
  • Tagging a person or brand: Engage with a broader audience through your social media platforms by tagging a person or brand within your posts. To tag people or brands in your content, insert their social media handle within your post (eg. @adeccocanada). The user or brand will receive a notification that you have mentioned them within your post, providing you with greater exposure for your content.
  • Utilize relevant hashtags: Hashtags are used on social media sites such as LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter to index relevant keywords. Clicking on a hashtagged word will lead you to other content that includes that hashtag. Pick keywords that incorporate your values and are consistent with your personal brand messaging. Some of our favourites are: #lovewhatyoudo, #mondaymotivation and #tweetmyjobs.

Dealing with negativity online

Whether it’s a corporate or personal brand, you will never be able to please all of your audience all of the time. Although you want engagement from your audience, online reviews, comments or posts reflect your personal brand and bad comments can harm the authenticity you have built for your brand.

How do you successfully manage negativity?

  • Be professional and address the concerns at hand.
  • Don’t delete the comment. Instead, work with the user to resolve the issue.
  • Regularly audit your digital presence to ensure that you are addressing any negativity in a timely fashion.

Promoting your personal brand offline

Though your digital presence is essential to maintaining a successful personal brand, promoting your brand offline can be equally important. Consider the following methods to endorse your personal brand in a more traditional way.

  • Industry events: Attend networking events and trade shows relevant to your industry. Visit meetup.com to view relevant industry events near you. You can also think about participating in industry groups, professional associations, community groups, schools and employment organizations.
  • Distribute printed business cards with your full contact information.
  • Send personalized thank you cards.
  • Contribute blog posts to prove your expertise in your field.

If your personal brand strategy is not producing the best results, turn to the experts at Adecco for help on your job search. For 46 years, the professionals at Adecco have been connecting skilled candidates with top employers. Ready to get started? Contact your local Adecco branch to register today!

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