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Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Build a Personal Brand

20 things to consider about building a Personal Brand

You are a brand. You are in charge of your brand. There is no single path to success. And there is no right way to create the brand called You. Except this: Start today. Or else – Tom Peters

Managing your brand as an asset requires an ongoing commitment to ensure that every action and impression is consistent with the way you define your brand. It also requires a commitment to being visible and adding value to both your target audience and your network.
  1. Know where you are going in both life and career, work on your Vision and Goals that will set you a clear path and focus
  2. Identify and understand your strengths and how these can be used to your benefit in differentiating yourself in the job market and in your career.
  3. Seek the feedback and input of others, how is your brand perceived by others, is there consistency across all groups and where do you need to do more to raise your brand profile.
  4. Know your target audience from an industry standpoint but also from an individual – who do you need to talk to and influence and where are those people likely to gather.
  5. Understand who else and what else might be competing for the same job or promotion. Know what is similar about them and also identify why you are different, how you can positively stand out.
  6. Ensure that your resume includes a value statement and that in reading it becomes obvious what you are worth to an employer
  7. Develop a longer personal brand statement that can be used in various situations and opportunities – one for 15 seconds, one for 45 seconds and one that can be used in written communications and on profiles.
  8. Have a brand identity – project the right, consistent image both physically but also in terms of font, colour, business cards, thank you notes, voicemail messages etc.
  9. Understand how you can best communicate your message, what is relevant for your target audience but also how and what do you feel comfortable in delivering.
  10. Decide on the key content themes for all communication exercises; provide a strong and consistent message in a few avenues versus the scatter gun approach.
  11. Be clear about who you are, what you offer and why you are different – know what is on brand and off brand for you and concentrate on the on brand actions.
  12. Don’t get involved in actions that can dilute your brand, be consistent with your approach and message.
  13. Be sure to be in front of your audience constantly, it takes 7 touches or exposures to catch someone’s attention, be sure that continue to be front of mind for your target audience.
  14. Never miss an opportunity to connect your brand to the last experience. After a meeting send a thank you that is on brand, meet people in places that are on brand for you.
  15. Identify all of the possible things to include in your brand environment and make a plan to get them all on brand. Aligning your environment with your brand will make you more confident and more memorable.
  16. Continually nurture and develop your network, your professional contacts are an extension of your brand and may well be your greatest brand ambassadors – treat them that way.
  17. Your brand is never stagnant it is always evolving, be on top of its development and refinement – never miss an opportunity to be more on brand.
  18. Build your on line brand with passion. Look to place intelligent and valuable comments in on line forums, on blogs, at book reviews – each one becomes a new page on the web and raises your on line profile.
  19. Understand that building a brand is not just for now, its something that can be continuous for the rest of your life – it needs to be part of your daily routine, a little brand building every day will ensure a healthy brand.
  20. Review and measure your brand strength annually – conduct a brand audit and compare the state of your brand now to where it was 12 months ago.
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