Wikipedia defines personal branding as a “process whereby people and their careers are marked as brands”. Personal branding has become more and more important as we manage ourselves as a commodity in what sometimes is a very competitive market place.
We all have relationships with brands, probably ever since we can remember and are constantly exposed to them in our daily life. And while the practice of self-branding may not be exactly like corporate branding it still is about packaging, designing and selling yourself – just like one would any product. Your personal brand is all about who you are, what you stand for and what you want to be known for.
So why should you care? Because in our digital world and the surge in social media more and more people are checking you out. Sometimes even before they have even met you – like your future employers, potential business partners….even those that may have a romantic interest in you.
And you should want to be in control of all those impressions. Packaging your self-brand is all about personal visibility. Technology and digital tools give us the opportunity to create a sell-able image of ourselves across multiple platforms. This may take some self-analyzing before you get started. Figure out who you are and how people perceive you. Think about your strengths, your expertise, your marketability and who you want your audience to be. Look at the channels that you want to set up, topics you want to talk about.
Being a personal brand is not necessarily about promoting your work or accomplishments, rather it is about promoting your presence in the market. Do not see it as a profit seeking practice. Use personal branding as a voyage of discovery. See it as an added personal value of how you think about yourself.