Personal branding is how we market ourselves.
Personal branding is a new word for an old truth. Perceptions are reality. And often almost instant. How we are perceived by others does impact on how they treat us, how well we are paid and can limit or unleash careers.
Individuals do not have logos, brands and taglines (necessarily) but we all do have a brand. People love to gossip and they give people tags – you will have heard people refer to other people as ‘the gossip’, ‘always late’, ‘a workaholic’, ’fun’, ‘quiet but clever’, a ‘drinker’, ‘really successful’. Some say it is even worse to trigger the response: ’Who?’
These tags come from the behaviour, or the perceived behaviour, of the people they are describing or slurring. These tags soon become The Established Truth. By their nature and by definition, we can influence what these tags are. We would be stupid not to try and influence them if they are not what we want. In some cases this may mean changing our behaviour because the negative tags reflect the truth. It is not rocket science but it does require a plan with reviews and testing.
Perceptions are reality. The truth is irrelevant.
Just like a product branding process, you need to define who you are, who your audience is and establish your message. The most important thing you have to do is to make sure that your behaviour reflects the brand that you are trying to project. Then you need to test that your “message” is being received and believed. This can take time.
What do you want to be known for? What do you want to be remembered for?
In my case, I am interested in being, and being perceived as being, discreet and effective in storytelling and personal branding/corporate branding for individuals, politicians and businesses. In the spin-filled circles where I work it is really important to be what you claim to be – but the same is true everywhere. This impacts on how I act and speak and how I operate with my social media and in real life.