Finding and ‘owning’ your very own personal brand requires a lifetime commitment to discovering and fine tuning who you are, what you stand for, and what you are willing to do about it.
Notice how many times I used the word ‘you’ there? Because your future and your personal brand depends on what you do today, tomorrow and the day, week and month after that.
I’ve reinvented myself several times in my life. Most adults have. We are all “masters of self-reinvention” but what we often forget is that forging a new path in life is a choice and it can take a great deal of courage to keep moving forwards if you’re feeling stuck.
Each time a major shift happens in our lives—leaving a job or a relationship, changing career, moving house, losing a loved one—we have to take control of who are now and who we want to become or we risk never reaching our full potential.
Our ‘personal brands’ are – and will continue to be – comprised of mistakes and successes that nowadays (owing to social media) will often be publicly known and shared.
And as such, accurately managing your brand and your reputation online is essential if you want to be taken seriously in business and in life.
Why personal branding is important in business.
Personal branding IS your reputation and your identity, and it is these two distinct features which distinguish you from the competition and facilitate the building of trust and interaction with your clients on a personal level. Content marketing mastery and social media promotion are two key ways to develop this trusting client audience once you’ve identified and solidified your personal brand.
People want to do business with other people, not companies, which is why personal branding – the art of building a unique brand around yourself – can dramatically improve your conversion rates.
Just look at Richard Branson – a typical example of how humanism and character can transcend from person to business; how successes and failures are laid bare but overall, his core businesses stand the test of time.
On this subject, Branson said: “Branding demands commitment; commitment to continual re-invention; striking chords with people to stir their emotions; and commitment to imagination. It is easy to be cynical about such things, much harder to be successful.”
Right on the money Rich.
Personal branding requires you to find a point of differentiation and a recognizable style; something that’s not always particularly easy to put your finger on if you’re starting from the very beginning of your branding journey.
In contradiction to this idea of us having to ‘find our own personal brand’ Amazon founder Jeff Bezos states: “Your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room”.
This statement removes the ownership of personal branding from you and from conscious choice. Is personal branding something we choose or something that chooses us? Bezos suggests that personal branding is something we have little control of; it’s who and what we appear to be according to the outside world.
If Bezos is right, all we can control is how we present ourselves to the outside world. Our brand is built based on how we respond to change, disappointment, successes and failures, and the decisions we make as a result.
And as we grow, evolve and self-reinvent in the face of various life changes, I guess we should expect our personal brand to adapt and develop too. By being conscious of our own personal brand and how we are appearing to the outside world, we can harness its power to work in our favour both in business and in our private lives.
Ask yourself; who do I want to be and what do I want to be remembered for in years to come?
Thanks for reading. I’d be keen to hear your thoughts.