In today’s day and age, anyone can become their own brand. The internet has made it possible to reach the masses with relative ease. The biggest challenge is figuring out how to create a brand that (a) resonates and (b) is authentic.
6 Tips to Crafting Your Own Personal Brand
Whether you’re a freelancer, entrepreneur, influencer, or simply an ambitious person with lofty goals and aspirations, having your own personal brand can give you an added sense of credibility in today’s online world. Here are some useful suggestions you can use to build and shape a personal brand that engages people on a meaningful level:
Create a Simple Website
Every brand – whether it’s associated with a company or an individual – needs a website. A website acts as your internet “home.” It’s the place that you own. And the design, layout, and content choices you make say a lot about who you are and where your priorities lie.
For 99 percent of personal brands, a very simple website is all you need. Simple doesn’t mean ugly or boring – just that it’s not overly complex and difficult to manage. By sticking to just one or two pages and a blog, you can focus on quality over quantity. It’s much easier to deliver a powerful and positive user experience when you don’t have to worry about managing a dozen pages. Here are a few tips to help you design a website that works for your brand goals.
Be Intentional With Social Media
Social media is one of your best personal branding tools. Make sure you use it wisely. This means having a consistent posting schedule, engaging with followers, branding your content, and focusing on the right platforms. In the early days of creating your brand, it’s much better to focus on quality over quantity. Emphasize a single social media platform and put all of your energy and effort into building your brand on that network. (Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn are good starting points.)
Create a Visual Identity and Voice
You need a visual identity and voice. It should be true to who you are and consistent. It’s okay to step your game up a bit – dressing nicer than you would when hanging around the house, for example – but don’t deviate too much from who you really are. People can sniff out a phony from 2,000 miles away!
Pay Attention to Your Appearance
Your physical appearance says a lot about you. And while we could spend hours arguing whether snap judgments of how people look are ethical or “right,” that’s the world we live in. If you want people to think highly of you and form positive first impressions, take care of yourself!
For example, let’s say that you’re trying to convey a young and fresh vibe with your personal brand. That’s fine – but if you have a rapidly receding hairline and a beard that’s turning gray, you’re missing the mark a bit. By proactively addressing your hair loss and restyling your facial hair, you can freshen up your appearance and bring it in line with your voice.
Invest in Video
There’s no denying the rise of video content and its importance in marketing and branding. It’s no longer just YouTube – every social media platform worth its salt has some sort of “stories” or live streaming feature.
No matter how nervous it makes you feel, invest in video as part of your personal branding strategy. There’s nothing like having people hear your voice and see your face. It humanizes an otherwise sterile brand and brings you to life on their screen. That’s a major win!
Surround Yourself With the Right People
Associations are everything in the online world. The people you surround yourself with will either have a positive or negative impact on your brand. If you connect with people who have positive brands, lots of authority, and copious amounts of online credibility, your audience will begin to associate these elements with you, too.
Take Control of Your Image
While it’s important that your image always remains authentic and consistent with who you are, remember that you have a lot of control over how you present yourself. By paying attention to small details like your website, social media profiles, appearances, and associations, you can make sure you’re putting forward the best version of yourself. Be thoughtful and meticulous – but never forget to be you!