A step by step guide on How to build your Personal Brand in 2021

How to build your Personal Brand

Personal branding is a relationship with you, an individual whose identity also exists separately from any company or any institution. You can explore more about Personal Branding and the reasons why it’s important for your career.

Let’s know how to build your personal brand in 2021:

How to build your Personal Brand in 5 steps

Here are the top five step by step guides to build an attractive personal brand in 2021:

1. Know who you are

To develop a personal brand that reflects your personal and professional identity, you first need to know who you are. You need to self examine yourself and create a list of your personal strengths and weaknesses.

Let’s start by asking 5 questions to yourself:

  • What are my specialities?
  • What motivates me?
  • How I can motivate others?
  • What are the things I get often complemented by others?
  • Which roles seem to drain my energy?

In case you are having difficulties finding answers to these questions, ask colleagues, friends and family how they would describe you. Once you’re more aware of the different facets of your personality, you can decide how best to brand them.

Keep in mind that many people struggle to choose a specific niche because they don’t want to limit themselves. Realize that your personal brand, like many corporate brands, will change as your career grows. The best strategy is to choose a particular area you’d like to focus on and let it evolve over time.

2. Find your niche, how you wanted to be known as

Personal branding is what separates you from the rest of the people trying to excel in your niche or field. Your personal brand is more than a reflection of who you are today; it’s a roadmap of where you to go. Pick something specific that you can do better than 90% of the world, it might be a special skill, talent or anything niche.

In addition to understanding your existing skills and competencies, assessing your strengths and weaknesses as they relate to whichever industry or career you want to break into next. By doing this, you’ll uncover the skills and traits that make you distinct, as well as the areas where you need to improve or gain new knowledge in order to advance.

3. Define your audience and Craft your story

Before you start crafting your personal brand story, you need to find out your target audience to whom you’re trying to reach. Are they recruiters or head hunters? Are they industry thought leaders? An individual at a particular company? The sooner you define the audience, the easier it will be to craft your story, because you’ll better understand the type of story you need to tell and where you need to tell it.

For example, if your goal is to reach hiring managers and recruiters, you might start by creating or updating your LinkedIn profile. Why? Because 92% of recruiters leverage social media to find high-quality candidates and, of those, 87% use LinkedIn.

On the other hand, if you are a graphic designer trying to impress the existing clients and attract new customers, you might choose to tell your story via a personal website or portfolio, where you can better express your wide range of talents.

4. Optimise and grow your digital presence

Below are the 5 most important statistics why you need to optimise and grow your online presence for building your personal branding.

  1. As of January 2021, there were 4.66 billion active internet users worldwide which makes it 59.5% of the global population.
  2. Employees at companies that invest in personal branding initiatives are 27% more likely to feel optimistic about their company’s future.
  3. 95% of recruiters believe that the job market will remain or become more competitive. If you don’t stand out online, your competition will fail.
  4. 90% of recruiters say they conduct online research of potential candidates.
  5. Of all Internet users, 65% see online search as the most trusted source of information about people and companies

How to build your Personal Brand

Make sure your online presence over social media platforms and other online mediums are engaging to your audience, colleagues, potential clients, head hunters, hiring managers, and others.

Here are some platform-specific tips to help you effectively craft your personal brand online.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn serves as the best professional social media tool and ultimate online tool defining your brand. Below are how LinkedIn can help you for building your Personal Brand.

  • Be authentic: On Linkedin, the best and only way to grow and win an audience is to be real, honest, and focus on what makes you unique and what you can offer. Personal branding is not about sales or spin.
  • Create a distinctive profile headline: Your LinkedIn headline is the first description that people will see. Make it count. Good headlines are clear, confident, and use terms people search for.
building your personal brand
Satya Nadella’s LinkedIn Profile
  • Use a professional photo: LinkedIn users with a professional headshot receive 14 times more profile views than those without. Upload a current photo that’s closely cropped to your face. Remember, you should be the focal point, so avoid any busy backgrounds—and smile. The more welcoming you look, the more likely recruiters are to contact you.
  • Avoid clichés: Words like “creative,” “extensive experience,” and “team player” appear on so many profiles that they’re almost meaningless. Find unique ways to describe your skills.
  • Be visible: Stand out by updating your status with projects you’re working on, stuff you’re reading and your opinions on them, and events you’re attending. Your brand is not just who you are; it’s what you do.
  • Build brand associations: You’re judged by the company you keep. By building your LinkedIn network, you’re building your personal brand. Connect with colleagues, classmates, and others.
  • Add to your knowledge: Differentiate yourself by knowing your industry deeply. Read up on topics you care about (as a start, check out LinkedIn Today, Channels, and Influencers).
  • Share in LinkedIn Groups: Every Group post you make and question you answer is an opportunity to market yourself and to build your credibility. Groups are also a great way to learn industry lingo.
  • Be personal: Customize connection requests or any other message on LinkedIn to your recipient. People will appreciate personal attention.
  • Be consistent: Make sure all the pieces of your professional footprint are consistent and send the same message – from your LinkedIn profile to your resume to other social networks.
  • Give generously: Helping others is a crucial way to build your own personal brand. Give advice, share job leads, provide endorsements, recommendations and congratulate people on their successes.
  • Ask for recommendations: Recommendations are highly noticeable on LinkedIn, always ask for recommendations from your managers, clients, business partners & former colleagues.

Twitter

Leverage this platform to highlight and build upon your industry expertise. Try to incorporate your personal brand into your Twitter bio by using hashtags to focus on your niche, following leaders in your field, and retweeting top industry stories. Don’t forget: what you tweet is still a part of your online image.

Personal website or portfolio

In this digital world, one of the best ways to stand out is by having a website that reflects your personal brand. Not only to build your brand but to add value to your audience. This is your platform to showcase your skills and experience, and also to share valuable advice with your audience.

Imagine what impact it will make when you share your digital CV or portfolio available on your own website with recruiters or potential customers.

ImproBrand - Best Branding Agency in India, building your personal brand
Niel Patel’s Website

Even if you are in the modelling, marketing or design field, it’s especially important to have a personal website or portfolio that provides essential information about who you are and helps visually highlight your work.

You can create your own site using WordPress, Wix, or Blogspot, among others. Small brands and business owners can also take advantage of helpful design resources like Canva for creating brand-specific content.

5. Follow the experts

The most important step in building your personal brand is to follow and learn from industry experts and leaders. In building a personal brand, your goal is to stand out but you can’t rise to the top without taking inventory of who’s already there.

Conclusion

Your brand is more than just an online persona; it’s how you carry yourself at home, in the office, and even on your daily commute.

As the digital ecosystem changes and your career evolves, so will your personal brand. Adjust your persona accordingly as you meet different people, find new networking opportunities, and grow in your career. As long as it reflects your professional life, don’t hesitate to create a brand that lets you shine.

Last but not the least, building your personal brand is not an overnight process, but once you have started working, it gets easy and results are worth it.

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