Your brand is what other people say about you when you are not in the room
Have you ever wondered if you are naturally inclined towards something?
Something that takes you just a little effort, whereas others are struggling?
It could be anything as long as you find a way to make it so valuable to the world that people are ready to listen to you.
That’s how you start your Personal Brand.
You might think, wait! I’m not a business so, how can I have a brand right?
But it’s not like that in the online world. In fact, I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say that everyone has a personal brand but, not everyone understands how to leverage it.
You may be a writer, dancer, painter, accountant, engineer, or even a god-damn ringmaster from a circus. You have a Personal Brand, even if you don’t know it yet.
The best examples of personal brands are actors. We see them everywhere, not just in movies, right? As a naive young man, I couldn’t help but wonder, why the hell is a cricketer trying to sell me an electric razor? He is not even related to it.
Gosh! These ad people don’t even know how to do their job, except I bought the exact same razor when I wanted one. (Hypocrite alert!)
Because I knew who he was. Even though he played a sport, I trusted him because of what we now call a Personal Brand.
That Personal Brand was, of course, Virat Kohli.
(Captain of the Indian Cricket Team)
But, the point is I bought something even though it was not even related to that person. Could you imagine the sheer madness if he launched his own cricket company?
That’s the power of a Personal Brand and let’s get right into it.
What is Personal Branding?
The way you present yourself to the world your unique capabilities is what a Personal brand is.
At least that’s what I think.
Your Personal Brand is your golden ticket to opportunities. The way you stand out from the crowd and how you add value to their life is what defines you.
Before the internet era, people did not have a way to showcase their skills apart from job interviews or talent competitions. Now, with constant connectivity, the world is literally a stage. And the internet is just a big theatre with lots of auditoriums.
Okay, so now you know that there is something called a Personal brand, it is crucial but, How would I build one?
The only starting step you need is to define your Ikigai:
What you’re good at,
What you can be paid for,
What does the world need,
and What you love.
Finding your Ikigai is not simple but, you can definitely start with what comes to the top of your head when you draw this chart.
Why should I even care about Personal Branding?
Most people have worked for somebody else’s success, so long that they forget that they are not just an entity.
They are an enterprise. You are an enterprise.
It is the most crucial brand you will build because that brand is who you are. It represents what you do, how you do and why you do it. There is no room for pretense.
It is you talking about the things you love to the people who love to hear you.
Your Personal Branding can take you from a position of scarcity to plenty, real quick.
If you want people to find you, it is your duty to get in front of them doing what you love.
How will I start Branding myself?
1. Have Razor Sharp Focus on what you want
You cannot be everything to everyone. It usually ends up being a nobody to everybody. It sucks because I have been through it. You need to define who you want to target and what you want to achieve.
I would choose a “copywriter who produces fire with content in the SaaS and marketing space” rather than a “copywriter who writes content for anything and anyone.”
I want specificity and, so do other people. Be razor-sharp with your targetting and, you will attract the right people. It goes for everyone, not only popular professions.
2. Always tell a story
There’s nothing in the world that binds us together more than a story. We want validation and, when we see that we are not alone, we feel so much better when that happens.
The nicher you get, the better the chances of relating to a category of people who were waiting for someone like you.
The stories that you tell help your audience imagine themselves in your position. When they relate to you, they are ready to give themselves to you and guide them.
Your Personal Brand helps to build authority by telling a story. When you are already where your audience wants to be, you attract genuine followers who need you. They want to grow exactly the way you did because you told your story.
3. Being consistent in your communication
People always look at consistency as daily or weekly posting on social or blogs. Friends, that is frequency. Sorry to ruin your day.
By consistency, I mean the flow of your communication. The way you interact with everyone over different platforms,
- what tone do you use
- what colors do you have
- what typography you show
- and how you interact with everyone
All this also counts as consistency in communication and, it helps to form a pattern for your consumers. That way, they can recognize who you are.
It all comes down to your unique identity and how it made people feel.
4.Make sure your audience sees you
If you want people to discover you, find them first and then start being visible. It sounds simple but, that is exactly what a social media strategy looks like.
Be present on the platforms where your ideal clients are. Being visible means doing something that gets you noticed and, that means
The single most important weapon for your Personal Brand is the content you create. It is what helps you get noticed.
Most people don’t start creating content because they think only experts can do that. The more you know, the more you create. Right?
Umm… I beg to differ.
The more you create, the more you learn is more like my style.
It’s good to have the knowledge and learn every day but, that is not the prerequisite of creating. Start creating and learn on the job.
When you start creating, you don’t just learn what you love. You also learn how to create and be better at it.
Create what you love until you love to create is something I resonate with.
5. Network the hell out of your contacts
The best way to learn is to do it.
The next best way is to be mentored by someone who is already living your dream life.
But, I don’t have any mentor and, I don’t know anyone.
That’s where networking comes in. Start following your ideals or, let’s call them, your target inspirations. The best ways to start:
- Check their website & absorb the material, that helps you get started.
2. Try to connect with them on all social media platforms. Target the ones where they have a minimal social presence. It is easier to contact them there.
3. Engage with their content. I don’t mean like their posts like thousands of other people. I mean, comment something meaningful and start a conversation or give nice reply/feedback. Whatever works for you.
4. If you want them to train you, offer them something valuable for free or at a lower cost than the market so that they think it’s a good deal. For eg: Interning for free or less money in exchange for some sweet knowledge.
Mentorship is one way to learn from the masters.
The other one is to cold message/email your contacts and learn from their experiences. Social media is ideally the best way to do this. Linkedin is my favorite because the community is relatively new & supportive where quick tips are just a message away.
Other ones are Twitter & Instagram. Arguably the best platforms to build a personal brand for the greatest visibility.
Now that you have a better idea of what it is, why you need it, and how to start, it all comes down to execution (the when).
The best time to build your Personal Brand was yesterday and, the next best time is right now.
I mean right now. Google away your passion, see what you can find out about yourself, and start where you are with what you have.
Before you say anything like I’m not someone who needs a Personal brand, think again harder. Or read the entire piece instead of skimming through and just reading the conclusion.
Everyone wants an Unfair advantage because that’s how life is and, this is your best chance.
Evolve with your brand and change the way you live your life. Start today and build something worth people’s time and money.
Providing value, helping people, and making a dent in the universe. That’s what this is about.
The best part is, this is just the start. Your Personal Brand has only one boundary and, that’s you.
You can easily beat yourself so, why not start today?