A personal brand is right for nearly everyone. It can help you create a voice and an image that accompanies your professional career, whether this is as an entrepreneur or in the corporate world.
Developing a personal brand doesn’t have to be a daunting task either. By sticking to a few basic rules, you can build a strong and flexible brand that will take you places.
Rule 1: Stick to One Key Message.
When your message is unfocused, your personal brand appears flaky. Remember, you can’t be everything to everyone so develop and stick to one key message. It’s also important for your message to appeal to your target demographic, but you should still be true to who you are and what you stand for.
Rule 2: Create a Genuine Story.
Your story is an integral part of your personal brand. How did you get to where you are today? What struggles did you face and who were the people that inspired you along the way? Your audience wants to know more about who you are based on the experiences that shaped you. Make this story genuine if you want to build your personal brand on a strong foundation. You can tell this story using written, visual, or video content – whatever fits your personal brand the best.
Rule 3: Don’t Be Scared to Fail.
It’s only natural to experience failures, both in your personal and professional life. These failures aren’t an indicator that you should give up and toss your personal brand aside. Instead, use them to re-evaluate your goals and plan of action. In fact, these failures can further shape your personal branding story.
Rule 4: Be Consistent.
If you want your personal brand to appear credible and trustworthy, be consistent. One way to do this is to reach out to your target demographic regularly. This way, you stay top of mind. Next, you want to position yourself as an expert in your field by regularly creating content around the same topics. Naturally, these topics should fit in with your personal brand and your message.
Rule 5: Make Your Brand Visually Appealing.
Visuals are an essential component of every personal brand. From your headshots to the images you use on your website and social media platforms – these visuals need to be professional and match the overall image of your brand. It’s also important to keep any photos of yourself up to date.
Rule 6: Live Your Brand.
Take a page from the books of celebrities and local personalities and live your brand. This means regularly promoting yourself and sharing interesting content. This doesn’t mean you should let the personal and professional aspects of your life overlap though. It’s ok to show your audience your personality and quirks, but they should still see you as a professional.
Rule 7: Aim to Leave a Legacy.
Lastly, before you take any actions associated with your personal brand, consider whether this fits in with the legacy you want to leave behind. What do you want people to remember about you once you’re no longer around?
There has never been a better time to create a personal brand and these rules will ensure you’re starting out on the right track.
Jamie Salima Love is a FingerLakes, NY and Boston MA based Headshot and Personal Branding Photographer extraordinaire. She has helped thousands of small businesses, brands, and entrepreneurs over her 20 yr career by creating updated photo libraries with stellar imagery. She is available for a multitude of services, whether you’re looking to work with her to simply update your Headshots, or to create an extensive Personal Branding Photography strategy and library with all the bells and whistles she’s got you covered.