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7 Steps To Creating An Effective Personal Brand Today

Posted on the 03 December 2022 by Martin Zwilling @StartupPro

personal-brand-brochureIt’s been happening for some time, but business changes, accelerated by the recent pandemic, have highlighted the need for all of us to review our positions, image, and satisfaction at work. As a business consultant, I see and hear all around me people questioning their current and future career interests and growth, and wondering what they can do to make a decision and prepare.

Since the start of the digital revolution several years ago, when the Internet and social media gave everyone instant access to you as well as your business, I have recommended personal branding as a basis for survival and thriving in this new world. People need to believe in you, as well as your positioning and brand, for you to thrive in the business world today.

I was pleased to see these personal branding messages highlighted and confirmed in a new book, “The New Brand You,” by branding guru Catherine Kaputa. I add my insights here to her guide to uncovering your own unique value proposition, building a positioning strategy, and becoming a valuable brand:

  1. Assess whether your career path is on trend. Futurists predict continuous dynamic change in the workforce – the rise of new “work” and the demise of traditional roles. They predict many of us will be changing jobs multiple times, either by choice or necessity, in this new world. Ask yourself, “What is the future for what I do? Do I need new skills?”

    From my perspective, you should be aware that many pundits believe that now is the time to be working at a startup or small business, or starting your own business. These now provide better quality, better paying, and more exciting jobs than big companies.

  2. Imagine your best future with digital credentials. Now may be the time to build new credentials is this digital age by taking time for education courses and attending digital conferences. For example, with a strong background in traditional marketing, you may reposition yourself as a digital marketing expert, with a much better opportunity.

    The key to winning in this digital age is having more data, and managing it effectively. The days of managing your role or your business by emotion and gut feel are gone. I recommend that it is time to tune-in to all the data and analysis sources you can find.

  3. Launch a personal marketing plan for visibility. In this new world of work, visibility is more important than ever. Don’t assume your good work will get noticed and speak for itself, especially in this new world of remote work. Build a personal marketing plan, as you would for a new product, including regular highlight reports, progress, and results.

    Remember that the person who knows how best to market yourself is you. Start now to set yourself apart as a leader and generous citizen of your professional communities, and you can take yourself much further than you may have dreamed. Don’t be too humble.

  4. Ramp up face-to-face time with key contacts. Don’t be limited by only non-real-time communications, implied with emails, texts, and online forums. You need to step out of your comfort zone to socialize, meet new people, and collaborate with peers, company leaders, and mentors. Career enhancing relationships still need real-time communication.

  5. Look for opportunities to articulate your value. Humility may be a virtue in some realms, but not today in business. With the outside world, that could mean you need to maintain a personal website, be an active member of industry groups, and show value in social media profiles. Internally, you may need a video summary report of monthly value.

  6. Seek strong internal and external alliances. There is more truth today to the old saying that who knows you and trusts you is more important than what you know. For increased productivity and advancement, you need business friends both inside and outside your company, not just personal friends. Seek expert mentors and always evaluate feedback.

  7. Accept change as the new world of work. Now is NOT the time to resist change, or argue that the old way is still the best. You need to be proactive in seeking new roles, using new tools, and tackling new challenges. Try to see these as opportunities rather than problems to avoid. Use the same mindset with new team members and customers.

In summary, I recommend that you use personal branding as a strategy to leverage your personality, personal preferences, and abilities in the most effective way to enhance your career opportunities and value to your employer and customers. These days, it is all about personal empowerment and marketing, rather than just working and waiting for people to see your value.

Marty Zwilling

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