In building a personal brand, the journey first begins by venturing inwards and enhancing your self-awareness through a personal audit. With a comprehensive understanding of your strengths and USP’s, you can develop a tailored strategy to bring to life your personal brand.
Leverage your points of difference
The thing that makes you different is actually the thing that can make you stand out in a busy digital environment. Take the time to understand the parts of you that are unique. This doesn’t need to be an exclusively work related skill. Think about the things that you are really good at in your personal life, as well as in your professional life. Perhaps this is simply being a listener; perhaps this is providing sensible advice. Regardless, find strengths that are relevant within your area of expertise. The first step in leveraging your differences is to embrace them totally. Explore how they may be useful in various settings.
Seek inspiration from role models
There’s a lot to be said for emulating your idols, or at least seeking inspiration from those with a career trajectory similar to your goals. Your creative approach to branding doesn’t necessarily need to be totally original. Creativity is almost always an enhancement of a pre-existing idea. It is healthy to copy what seems to be working for others. Over time, you will gradually adapt a strategy around your personality and brand.
In addition, by closely following others who have created a successful personal brand, you will be exposed to ideas you might have otherwise missed. Having a widespread flow of creative inspiration is important to spark new ideas. You might see a competition or survey being run through Facebook and decide to include an adapted version in your next newsletter mail out.
Define your destination and reverse engineer your goals
Visualizing what success looks like for you is a surprisingly effective technique in goal setting. This doesn’t necessarily mean daydream about sipping pina coladas on an 80-foot yacht. You need to imagine the steps that you would take to achieve your desired position. What would be the specific necessary components of this desired state, such as social followers & engagement, website campaigns and audience size, email marketing, public speaking and other engagements. You should be able to morph some of your unique traits into clear personal branding goals, producing a vision for the future guided by your differentiation strategy.
Think big and see your ambitions in your mind’s eye, then break it down stage-by-stage, step-by-step. By working backwards you can reverse engineer your strategy for success. By priming your mind to tackle these actions, they will also come more naturally to you when they are actually undertaken.