It starts with YOU!
Personal branding is the most effective way to clarify and communicate what makes you different, special, and valuable to your customers (target audience).. It's about uncovering your unique attributes - your strengths, skills, values, and passions - and using them to stand out from your competitors. Through personal branding you clearly communicate the unique promise of value that you have to offer. Think of your personal brand as your reputation. It builds over time and becomes synonymous with how people describe you.
Standing out means being different and that you stand for something. If your brand is going to be a success you need to be able to pinpoint what it is that makes what you standout. What differentiates you from others within your niche.
It takes time to identify and develop your strong brand. Allow me to share my story of building my personal brand. I was at a networking event one evening and someone who knows me introduced me to several other women. She introduced me as a trainer on leadership. I never thought of myself as a leadership trainer. I have on occasions conducted leadership training. It became clear to me that if you don't brand yourself, someone else will. I had been branded as someone I didn't want to be. I realized my goal is to let my brand become a vehicle for my most authentic self. In this way you'll distinguish yourself from competitors, identify your true identity, highlight your talents, and establish your reputation.
The perception in the mind of my colleague was not revealing how I perceived my personal brand. I knew I needed to take the time and uncover my true identity. It was time to invent or reinvent my brand. Here are the steps that I took to build my personal brand.:
1. Know who you are.
2.What you stand for.
3. What you believe in.
Let's begin with "know who you are." Identify your core values, strengths, skills, passions, desires and abilities. Don't forget to include your accomplishments. You will be amazed what you will discover when you spend time alone listing items about yourself and being honest. I suggest taking Gallup's Strengths Finder online assessment. It will reveal your top 5 core strengths. People thrive when they operate in their strengths. Knowing who you are allows you to create an authentic personal brand.
A personal brand is like your thumbprint, something absolutely, individually yours. You may have similar values, desires, passions, abilities, and skills but you are unique. Identifying what makes you unique is what separates you from the pack.
Next, spend time revealing "what you stand for". A brand that stand out definitely stand for something. Your mission is to identify and understand why you stand for whatever the cause may be. Here is what I stand for - seeing more women in business and careers set a new standard within their families and take their families to a new level. This can happen when women are thriving financially in business and professional careers. By no means am I saying this is the only way women can make a difference within their families. I am saying when there are no financial burdens it does make life choices easier to choose. Go ahead and share what you stand for?
Lastly, "what you believe in." I have believed all my life that women can make a huge impact within their families. In most families today, women are the bread winner. My desire is to see women realize their true worth and impact their family Ask yourself what do you believe in.
Becoming clear on these 3 elements will help you define the success of your brand. Knowing who you are, what you stand for, and what you believe in will allow you to inspire others to listen and take action. What I have discovered is a strong brand will create a movement.
Here's a suggestion, when people introduce you to others, listen to the words used to describe you. .Keep a journal of the words used to determine the perception others may have of you. Look for similarities. If it isn't who you are you can always create the perception you desire.
You are uniquely designed - allow your uniqueness to stand out and communicate who you are, what you do and who you do it for will lead to your brand success.
Until Next Time,
Here's to YOUR Success!!!