My friend had an interview the other week and he was really excited because it’s a position he’s been wanting for quite a while now. He was really nervous though, he needed to impress the interviewer. If only there was a way to get some information on them. Ah yes, Google!
Whether you know it or not, you have a personal brand. Go onto google, type in your name and information will come up. Is it the worst school photo you ever took, a list of all your accomplishments, or an old Twitter photo from about three years ago? Rather, does your information across your various social media platforms such as LinkedIn and Facebook correlate. Building your personal brand is about actively making the decision of whether your online reputation is going to help you get a step ahead in life or have blind dates and interviewers cancel on you. With a booming gig-economy, embracing and building your personal brand is imperative.
So what is your personal brand? According to Founder of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, “Your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room.” The term “brand” however, is normally used within a business context, but with the advancement of social media and the gig-economy, personal branding has become fundamental. BYOE had the opportunity of speaking to Founder at AFARA Group, and the inspiration of international runways and fashion houses for decades, Allana Finley who stated that “Your personal brand is what helps you attract clients and consumers”. Finley further goes on to explain that when creating one’s personal brand, it is important to incorporate one’s uniqueness into any business engagements especially when developing one’s expertise.
BYOE understands that building your personal brand is a very self accomplishing step in your life. It’s giving life to your passion, it’s making your dreams a reality. We are huge advocates of following your passion and believe that the best results are fueled by those that act out of passion as no challenge is too large nor too small when your heart is invested.
So what do you need to know to build your personal brand? Allana Finley states that when building your brand you must ask yourself what is your USP, your unique selling point? In establishing this you will be able to then to acknowledge what your strengths and weaknesses are and work out all the possibilities and opportunities that have become apparent after assessing all of this.
It is important to not be afraid of acknowledging your weakness as, as stated previously, this vulnerability allows you to understand where there is the potential for growth and improvement. Keen to have a successful personal brand? Finley explains the importance of always engaging in professional and social settings in a way that shows what you have to offer and how you can uniquely impact a company or client. Give them a reason to chose you over any other candidate.
Most importantly, find mentors and build a network of like-minded individuals who are focused on personal brand building in order to not only learn from one another but collaborate as well.
So remember, whether you’re looking for a better job or maybe even more sales for your company, personal branding is more important than ever. You don’t need to be Oprah or Richard Branson to have a great personal brand you simply need to continually craft and update your digital presence and most importantly, keep it real! Your honesty, transparency, and authenticity are what will differentiate you in the long-run. You never get a second chance to make a first impression—make it one that will set you apart, build trust and reflect who you are.