Personal Branding Research and Content
Whether you like it or not you have a personal brand and you should consider yourself a business
We all know that one person that works for themselves and is the epitome of a personal business. It may be your barber, beauty therapist, personal trainer or even your tattooist. These guys bring in money and function independently. Usually customers seek them out and come to them purely due to their reputation. Their reputation… what they are known for is in fact their personal brand and it encompasses everything about them. These individuals demonstrate everything a business would demonstrate. They have their own social media avenues for uploading their content which essentially becomes their advertising and marketing campaigns; they cause their customers to have a certain experience with them when they are providing their service- which is known as customer experience or user experience in the business and tech worlds; they provide a service or special offering, and this could be haircuts, exercise prescriptions or tattoo artwork- which is similar to the fundamental services you engage businesses for whether it be legal advice, home building or script writing; they have regular and loyal customers- which essentially manifests as brand loyalty in large organisations; they possess a unique combination of core values and principles which helps craft their view of their world and guides their business direction- which is no different to the vision, mission and value statements shouted by companies all over their websites; and they regularly have referral networks in their domains- which is eerily similar to the strategic partnerships that organisations engage in.
The example above clearly demonstrates this concept however even as an employee for a company you are essentially functioning as a business. When companies are looking to employ you they are going to employ you based on the services you can provide them. Can your unique skill set and expertise provide them with the valuable service they are looking for. They need someone to market their business. Are your marketing services good? Do people recommend them? What is the ethical background of your marketing? Are you as a person likely to screw up and post controversial content that they can get in trouble for? The services you are advertising are a derivative of your personal business and come under the umbrella of your personal brand. When a company employs you it is the same as them contracting a business to provide a service. You are essentially a third party entity delivering services under the alias of a person. They could engage a business or you to provide the same service.
This is important because now that you understand that you are a business you need to start treating yourself like one. Businesses put a lot of effort, thought and money into crafting a unique and valuable brand. How they present themselves to the public is of paramount importance to senior management.
Your personal brand is interchangeable with how someone perceives you. For individuals with a good level of self-understanding and insight you will be able to readily identify your personal brand. It helps to know what your unique skill set is and what sets you apart from others. Some other things to think about are: What do you stand for? How credible is your work? What are the lasting impressions that people form of you? What is your tagline? Every business has a slogan. What’s yours? (an example tagline for a personal trainer may be: “Prescribing health through exercise”)
Your branding will attract certain people to you for specific things. If you are perceived as a subject matter expert people will usually come to you for advice in that field. Similarly if your personal brand was centred around kindness and empathy people may come to you in their times of need or despair. You may also be perceived as a non-conformist (likes to challenge rules and guidelines), a rainmaker (brings money in to organisations), a thought Leader (visionary) or even a loyal follower (essential people for good teams). There is infinite categories of personal brands and you can even make yours up. How people perceive you is how they will treat you. Understanding your brand will help you properly advertise yourself and attract certain customers. If you are struggling to identify what your personal brand is you can ask other people how they perceive you, what they think you are good at or what you are known for.
As well as identifying your personal brand you need a way for people to find you. Do you come up in a Google search? Do you have business cards handy to give out to people? Or perhaps you have a live website that you can simply link to people when required.
On your ZygaDoc we have allowed you to express your personal brand through our
- Fluidic design technology- which demonstrates your individuality, creativity and style.
- Capability profiles- which demonstrates your key skills and attributes in communication and technical domains.
- Personal footprints- which demonstrates the diversity of your life experiences as well as traits like consistency, time management and your ability to cope with pressure.
- Social media integration- to illustrate what your social media presence is like and the impressions it gives off. (tip: if you’ve got pics of you at 3am blind drunk in the middle of a street with a bottle of Tequila you’re going to attract a very different kind of audience).
- Business card generator- which allows you to always be prepared for business opportunities whenever they arise in your life (my co-founder Dan and I regularly laugh at the serendipitous nature of life).
- Through the advertisement of your tagline- which is what people will remember you by.
Other things that will give credibility to your personal brand are testimonials and quotes that you can get from people. We have allowed you to add these sections in to your ZygaDoc. A good person to use might be your professor, current boss or influential figure in your life.
Understanding and using the best available technology for your personal branding is therefore a very important part of your professional development. When you are applying for your next job don’t forget that there is an invisible ABN attached to you. Treat yourself like a business because you are one, and we’re here to make sure that you are advertised to highest possible standard. We got you.