We tend to think of brands at the company level, but individuals can have brands too. These are known as personal brands. A cohesive and clear personal brand gets others to associate you with your area of expertise.
This is especially true if you are an expert in your field, a thought leader, or the founder of a company. When your whole brand is yourself and what you can bring to a discussion, you need to make sure that brand is well defined and effective.
If your brand is relevant to others’ interests and unique enough to help you stand out from the crowd, more people will learn about you and trust your expertise.
Here’s how to build a personal brand that represents who you are and what you can teach others.
Select a Niche
Your niche is your area of focus. It is the topic you have the most knowledge about and the one you most associate your professional persona with. Your niche should be one of the first things people think about when they hear your name.
Of course, you probably have many talents. Most people aren’t exclusively good at a single thing. However, it’s best to identify the one area you most excel at when constructing your brand.
Consider what you want to be known for and what skills you want to market. The answers to these questions will define the niche at the forefront of your personal brand.
Define Your Target Audience
When selecting your niche, consider your target audience.
Who are you trying to reach? Are you a life coach looking to help people down on their luck? Are you the founder of a company who wants to help others become entrepreneurs too?
Your niche should line up with the people you want to help. You need to grab their attention before you can teach them anything, so choose a niche that your target audience is interested in.
How to Build a Personal Brand Around Your Niche
Once you decide what you want to be known for, you can then turn this niche into your brand.
As you continue to work in your niche, your personal branding will become more defined, and you’ll start attracting interested listeners.
Define Your Brand’s Values and Ideals
Even if you know what field you want to associate yourself with, you still need to stand out in that field. You can do this by defining the values and ideals that matter most to your brand.
Develop a personal mission statement that represents causes that are important to you. Think about why you want to succeed—other than the financial aspect—and when you can, align yourself with values that others are passionate about.
Promote Values That Matter
People want to support causes that matter. Many companies use charitable donations or volunteer work as good press, especially if the chosen charity appeals to many people. You can use a similar strategy to showcase the values that matter to your personal brand.
Any form of positive impact on your community can help people see your personal brand in a good light. Identifying yourself as someone who is generous, compassionate, and helpful paints a picture of you in others’ minds that will likely stay there for a long time.
Maintain a Consistent Tone in Your Branding
Consistency in your tone is just as important as being consistent in your values.
Think about your target customer again. What would they expect from someone in your position? Would they want professional politeness, or friendliness and sympathy that feels genuine?
Your personality is a key part of your brand’s appeal. If you maintain a stable tone, people will be more likely to listen to and trust you.
Spread Brand Awareness
Brand awareness is one of the most important factors in successful marketing. If people don’t know you exist, you could be losing potential opportunities.
If you can build a reputation for being the go-to person in your industry, you will have people lining up to listen to you.
Marketing Your Brand
You have to take the first steps to get your name out into the public consciousness. This means networking and promoting your services.
Don’t be afraid to tell people who you are and what you do. It can feel a little awkward giving an elevator pitch for yourself, but you’ll never know who’s interested if you don’t try.
Using Podcasting to Your Advantage
Podcasting is an amazing way to grow your audience and let others hear what you have to say. It is a great tool for showcasing your expertise on a topic.
You might choose to make your own podcast, or you could appear as a guest expert on someone else’s podcast. Developing your interview skills can help you make the most of your time in the spotlight.
Building a Personal Brand FAQs
What is a personal brand statement, and do I need one?
Your personal brand statement takes all aspects of your brand and condenses them
into a brief sentence or two. It’s great for introducing yourself and strengthening your brand.
How can I get invited to podcasts?
First Paw Media makes it easy to find the right podcast for you with our podcast and guest matching services. We have more than 5000 podcasts and guests looking to connect and share their expertise.
As you define and develop your personal brand, you’ll start reaching more people than ever before. People will start to associate you with not just your field but also the kinds of values you hold and the mission you’re trying to accomplish.
Building brand awareness allows you to connect with so many people who otherwise might not have heard of you. It is an absolutely critical part of putting yourself out there and finding people who are most interested in your expert knowledge.