Do I need personal branding?
Whether you are a college graduate or an experienced CEO, in today’s marketplace, it’s tough to stand out. Previous accomplishments won’t guarantee that you’ll be more in demand than your rivals. Always, there is same-level competition around and so many similar choices out there. Now, here comes the need for you to stand out tall from the crowd and shine with such a dazzling light that all eyes are turned over to you. By this, I don’t mean that you must be willing to live the glamorous life of a celebrity (although you might have no problem doing that), or that you must feed your soul’s lust for worldly fame and glory. I simply mean we should all learn how to enhance our personal brands and become the visible choice for our customers, clients and recruiters-in person, on paper, and online. Now the question you might ask is: Personal branding. Is it for me?
In my fifteen years of experience in lifestyle and business coaching, I believe if you belong to the following nine categories, then personal branding is a ‘must’ for you, or you’ll be literally invisible to the people you most need in your job.
I’m a highschool student. I’m not sure what career is best for me.
In my experience, more than 90% of teenagers aren’t aware of their talents, values, and purpose in life. The first step in personal branding is helping individuals unearth their unique blend of skills, values and experience and use that uniqueness to differentiate themselves from the others.
I’m a new college graduate, and I’m looking for a fulfilling job
The days are gone when your resume was the only thing recruiters and employers used in order to evaluate you as a job candidate. Today, most recruiters and HR professionals will check out your personal brand as a standard step in their selection procedure, both online before they meet you and in person if and when they decide to invite you for an interview. Setola Antes, HR professional and recruiter, says, “You have a brand whether or not you’ve chosen to manage it. And that digital footprint can – and will – be used by over 90% of recruiters to make a decision about your candidacy.” So, you’d better get in control of how you are judged by others online and offline.
I’m employed, but I’m not happy with my current job. I want some change.
In Gallup’s 2013 State of the Workplace study, it was shown that work is more often a source of frustration than one of fulfillment for nearly 87% of the world’s workers. Only 13% of workers said they felt engaged by their jobs. Don’t let this happen to you. If you use the correct procedure for personal branding, you’ll find your true passions and unearth your real purpose in life and that will lead you to do something significant where you can get an amazing level of job satisfaction.
I’m an employee. I think I’ve learned enough in my present position. I want to get promoted and move up the career ladder.
A lot of career princesses are out there waiting around for that prince of a promotion or raise to come, wondering why it never happens. Getting promoted results from standing out, which is something you do constantly through personal branding. You can’t just do good work and be sincere in what you do and expect your boss to notice you and reward you for it. It simply doesn’t work that way. The secret to being visible is to impress others with the unique and authentic human-being that you are and the one-of-a-kind value you bring to the table.
I’m an entrepreneur. I want to find a way both to earn more money and to spend more time with my family.
Lots of us are familiar with the grind and hustle of being an entrepreneur and the so many sleepless nights you’ll experience if you’ve just launched a start-up. You have to work, work, and work. At the same time, you need to pay attention to your personal life and your family. Solution? If you make a name for yourself, you’ll get recognized much more easily and will get found more rapidly by the very people who will boost your business in a way that you’ll become gradually more secure financially, and guess what happens next? You will not only earn more but you can also spend more time with your loved ones.
I’m a professional. I want to win more clients or patients and increase my earnings.
With all the noise in the marketplace and unbelievable promises and bonuses thrown in by your rivals, you undoubtedly need to develop a unique presence both in person and online that will leave your prospects no choice other than to hire you. Nanton and Dicks say in their book, Celebrity Branding You, “People buy people.” If you’re a gem of a personality but nobody knows you, you’ll rot in silence. One of the major parts of personal branding is learning how to promote your brand and get your word out to the market. As Dan Schawbel writes on Mashable, “From the corporate brand (BMW), to the product brand (BMW X3) and down to the personal brand (car salesman), branding is a critical component to a customer’s purchasing decision.”
I’m in transition to a new field or market. I want to build credibility and powerful relationships.
Lacking testimonials and the power of word of mouth because you’re a newbie?! Personal branding is there to help you out. Although it may take you a few months to put the essentials in place, it’s absolutely worth the effort. Using strategies and tools such as social media, online marketing, direct marketing and so forth you’ll be able to get through to key influencers more rapidly than what you ever imagined.
I’m a C-level executive, willing to position myself as a leader, particularly a thought-leader in my field.
You want to establish credibility, reputation and achieve the status of celebrity expert. What other way is there to differentiate yourself and promote your best self in the market other than personal branding? Personal branding will help you discover your unique mix of skills, experience, values, passion and purpose and help you be seen in an eye-catching, yet authentic, package. If you’re an executive and want to make sure if this is really important, William Arruda, a renowned expert in this field, reports that 20% of the Fortune 100 companies work with him directly on the subject of personal branding. And this number is growing.
I’m a busy accomplished professional. I’d like to make sure my brand stays visible in the long run.
All the time, new faces are emerging in any field, with disrupting ideas and products threatening to tip the balance of the market. A powerful way to stay on top of the wave of changes is managing and maintaining your personal brand, which will help you remain relevant in the marketplace.
Honestly, your personal brand can outlive you for so many years and if you create it properly, you can leave a valuable legacy behind. So, if next time you find yourself asking, “Do I really need to do personal branding?,” look again at the list above. Accept responsibility for your career and go out there and build a valuable memorable personal brand that will hopefully outlast your lifespan.