Personal Brands are all the rage right now, almost to the point where it’s become a buzzword. You’ll probably recall in one of my last posts that I mentioned that if you don’t already have a Personal Brand then you’re losing, and I stand by that. The reason that this is such a hot topic right now is because it’s IMPORTANT. In a world where entrepreneurship is increasingly the norm it’s so vital to have a Personal Brand because this is what you’re marketing to the world, and this is what your going to be known and recognized by. But what makes up your Personal Brand? What should you keep in mind when developing your own Brand? Here are 5 traits that are absolutely VITAL to a good Personal Brand.
I can’t begin to stress how important this trait is. Communication is at the core of everything we do. Advertising, Social Media, Marketing, Networking, whatever it may be, communication is at the heart of it. Part of being able to execute a good Brand is being able to effectively communicate what you’re about. How else is your audience going to know what your values, goals, or mission is all about? If you can’t master the art of communication, then the sad fact is that all of these other traits are going to be useless to you because no one is going to know who you are and what you’re about. Keeping in mind the values of your brand and being able to utilize how you communicate to enforce that is key.
Consistency is what gets you noticed, period. Have you ever heard of someone become successful by putting in work for a week, taking off a month, and then working another week? No I’m sure you haven’t. That’s because building a Personal Brand requires work every single day. You have to spend every day consistently putting in work to continue to develop and grow your Brand. Not only that but the consistency of your content is important. If you’re a chef and people tune in to you to hear you talk about new recipes, but you’re constantly talking about sports you’re doing yourself and your audience a disservice. Your market is paying attention to you because you have content pertaining to that market, and being consistent with that is how you continue to grow your Personal Brand.
This is probably the most underrated trait of a Personal Brand. Engaging with your audience is probably the greatest thing you can do to build your Brand. Have you ever had a large Brand or Celebrity @ you on twitter, or reply to an email or comment? If you have it probably felt pretty good didn’t it? But why is that? It’s because you felt recognized. You felt like you mattered to that person or Brand and that they were actually listening to you. Your community and following has a lot to say, and listening to them is the most important thing you can do to interact. Seriously, make it a point to engage with every single person that interacts with you, it makes the world of difference. I guarantee you that if you comment on this post, reach out to me on Twitter @cm_vernon, message me on Facebook, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org I will answer you, EVERY TIME. Caring is something so simple, but so important, and your audience wants to feel heard.
This goes along with my last point. Engaging with your audience is great and of course you should be doing it, but if you’re not being genuine and authentic then you’re hurting yourself more than you’re helping. No one wants to feel like they’re talking to a robot, right? We’re all humans, we have personalities, utilize that! There’s a distinct difference between actually caring about someone’s question or problem and replying to genuinely try to help them, and just replying to get it out of the way. Be real, be authentic, be genuine, because I guarantee you that your audience can tell if you’re not. We’ve all been trained to read people, and being generic is going to make you stick out like a sore thumb. So, actually take an interest in your audience and authentically engage with them. If you don’t care about your audience enough to do that then you’re in this thing for all the wrong reasons.
I want to be clear about this point before I may confuse some of you. When I’m talking about creativity here, I’m not necessarily talking about artistic creativity. Sure, that kind of thing helps, especially if you’re building your Personal Brand around Design like me, but I’m talking more about a state of mind. When thinking about your Personal Brand it’s important to remember that you’re probably not the only one doing this. Does that mean you should just give up? No of course not, it just means that you’re going to have to be creative to come up with ways to stand apart from others in your industry. Being able to creatively think outside of the box to approach problems is something that is going to take your Brand above and beyond because it’s going to differentiate you from everyone else. Standing out is so important in a space filled with so much noise, and being able to do that is going to require a bit of creativity. So don’t undervalue your creativity, embrace it and utilize it as a strength to expand your Personal Brand.
Building a Personal Brand can be a complicated thing sometimes, and it comes with a lot of pressure. Being able to establish a presence that people pay attention to is so important now, but getting there is hard work. If you incorporate these 5 traits into the base of your Personal Brand then you’re starting off on the right track, and I guarantee you’ll see results.
What trait do you think is most important, and how do you think you could be doing that better? Let me know in the comments below!