A lot is being made of building a personal brand lately. And no matter the circle, it really is a good idea to have a clearly defined personal brand. This is especially true if you are in the midst of growing your career, or finding a new position. What isn't so great is that developing a brand sounds like a very lofty idea that is not easily executed. It sounds hard, but I am here to tell you: It really isn't all that hard.
Related:5 Ways To Boost Your Professional Profile With Social Media
We can get a really solid start in easy six steps. Ready? Let's go!
Step #1: Define your brand
The first thing you should probably understand is how to define a personal brand. I happen to subscribe to this definition:
It is the intersection of your reputation, your aspirations and who you really are as a person and a professional. Think about it this way: In terms of reputation, look at what are you known for? Or what does everyone come to you for? In terms of your aspirations, what do you hope to achieve in your career and in your personal life?
And finally, you overlay your reality. For me, I am an innovator who is passionate about creating happy experiences for job seekers. So, what's yours? Feel free to make a diagram like above for yourself; it may help refine your position. Once you have this dialed, it's time to spread the word on your brand.
Step #2: Tidy it all up
Chances are, you are very active in social and now that you have defined your personal brand, you need to go into all of your profiles and update the information to reflect your newly defined personal brand. Your profile text should be very relevant to who you are and your pictures should also be “on brand."
Step #3: Create and curate great content
One of the easiest and fastest ways to build credibility in your personal brand is to create and curate really great content that supports the things you stand for. For many, it is finding great articles that are in your area of expertise and sharing those out to your networks.
For example, I am passionate about creating great job seeker experiences, so I curate content from a number of sites dedicated to helping people get the most out of their career and their workday. The key is to pick a few focused areas to solidify that branded position among readers and followers. Use a RSS reader like Feedly.com to aggregate news from all the blogs you read so you can go to one place to see all the news you may want to curate.
Step #4: Make new connections
Use LinkedIn Groups and Twitter to create new connections. Join groups on LinkedIn that are aligned with your brand and then, start posting your great content there. But, be sure you respond to any comments that your articles may generate.
In addition, you can also join a weekly Twitter chat to network with new people on Twitter. If you choose to get involved in a Twitter chat, be sure to actively participate, use the hashtag of the chat and follow people who are interesting. This is a great way of growing Twitter followers and establishing your brand. Plus, a company or two has been known to use Twitter chats to identify talent to connect with, so they may also lead to job opportunities.
Step #5: Try your hand at guest posting
As you start to find your voice in this conversation, don't hesitate to reach out to a blog you follow and ask to provide content. Many times, bloggers are looking for content and are happy to give you some space. Make sure when you are pitching a story idea that it is not overtly promotional and that you have a distinct point of view on the subject.
Step #6: Be sure you can back it up
So, you have a brand and your social profiles are beautifully aligned. You contribute to the conversation in your area of expertise. But, make sure that above all, you can back it up. Make sure that if someone comes across your work, it validates you position. Remember that time that Las Vegas said it was for families? Yeah, that didn't work because they couldn't back it up. So, be sure that you have the experience to back that brand up.
This post was originally published at an earlier date.
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