Personal branding has fast become a buzz word that we throw around nodding knowingly, but few of us really comprehend its power.
Personal branding is described by Influencer Marketing Hub as the image people see of you, it is how you promote yourself and the telling of your story.
In essence, it is how you market yourself and your career as a brand. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos aptly described it as: “Branding is what people say about you when you are not in the room.”
The process of intentionally designing and managing a personal brand is no easy feat. Kagiso Musi, marketer extraordinaire, has offered some great methodology on how to establish a personal brand in the digital economy.
Musi advises that the first step is identifying your singularity of expertise, meaning being able to clearly articulate what your super skill is.
Once this is done, it becomes necessary to verify if others who know you well also agree that the said skill is indeed at expert level and what you can build your personal marketing collateral around.
In a digital era it is critical to develop social media proficiency and a greater understanding of the various platforms to display your brand. The major platforms being: Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter. These numerous social media houses were established for various reasons.
Facebook was created to connect family members who are separated geographically. Instagram was created for artists to visually share their work whilst twitter was created with the intention to connect business people in order for them to communicate and share ideas in a succinct manner. LinkedIn was developed with the intention of creating connections across the world of business.
Although these respective platforms have evolved in their use, from their initial design, the approach in how they are used needs to be tailor-made in order to maximise the value one gets from leveraging them. Thus the messaging across these platforms need to be personalised whilst ensuring the messaging stays on brand.
It is imperative that one continues to reflect and analyse all of the channels in order to change strategy and messaging accordingly. Asking key questions such as why do they follow me? Is my engagement productive? Is my messaging relevant? Is my brand consistent?
In digital media it is an occupational hazard that negative comments will arise so, as the manager of your brand, you must master the management of negativity. Being able to sift commentary for valuable feedback in constructive criticism and negativity that is not helpful and to be ignored is a keen skill one must develop.
It is my hope that your brand exudes your values, that you will make an impact and be the spokesperson who constantly advocates for your brand. May it be that the moment you close the door and leave the room the words uttered by others regarding you are a true reflection of your values and brand.