Let’s explore “what is personal branding” and how it helps you succeed.
When you leave a networking event, how many people do you really remember? How about a month later? When it comes to referrals or recommendations, do you come to mind? If it isn’t you, you may be losing new business.
Most people you meet are forgettable because they blend in with everyone else. Knowing the answer to “what is personal branding?” can win you new business.
Many people have a hard time defining themselves.
They may be unsure of the characteristics that make them special or what they do differently from others who do what they do. But that is exactly what a personal brand is.
Successful people know how important their personal brand is to their success.
Being instantly known for specific characteristics increases your reputation and should I say…fame? It’s not always expertise or a list of your services that makes you special. It’s the way you do it. We can all be “famous”, even in our own circles.
The definition of famous is: Having a widespread reputation, usually of a favorable nature; renowned; celebrated
When Barbara Corcoran was breaking into the real estate agent business, she didn’t have much money. She took the first dime she made and bought a hot pink designer coat, which she never took off. Everyone knew her before long. She attributes this one thing to her initial success. (I’m not sure if this photo is of her in the actual jacket, but you get the idea.)
“I blew my first $340 commission check on the fanciest coat I could find. It made me look and feel like the success I would become.” Barbara Corcoran
Standing out makes you memorable. In business, this is a distinct advantage.
Don’t all people have certain characteristics you love them (or hate them) for? That’s their personal brand. Read more about why you can’t be a Lady Gaga by being mainstream
The difference between a personal and company brand
Your business brand and your personal brand have 1 thing in common…They define your attitude and personality. But here is the difference.
Your company brand is what defines the overall corporate or product personality. Explore our brand strategy services
Your personal brand is the “something special” you ARE or DO WITHIN your company.
Your personality, character, values, work ethic, style, talent, interests…all of these shape your personal brand identity.
Why personal branding matters
What do people say about you when you’re not in the room? How do they describe you to friends and business associates?
1. When people are thinking of referring or recommending you, they need a clear picture. Something they can easily repeat verbally or send in an email.
2. People do business with people. Being clear about who you are, what’s great about you and how you help others succeed motivates people to seek you out.
3. It keeps you top of mind. Defining yourself makes you stick in people’s minds.
4. When applying for a job, those who stand out are more likely to be hired.
Creating your own personal branding
FIRST: Be specific: Pick one thing. Stick to the one thing you are known for. Not sure what that is? Ask your friends and colleagues. They will say “You’re the one who always…” or “You’re the one I go to for…”
SECOND: Be aspirational: Reach high for something great you see in yourself. Maybe you haven’t reached your goal yet, but you can always fake it till you make it.
THIRD: Tell a story: Be personal and be genuine. Expand your brand by telling a story about how you got this way. Use it on your about us page, LinkedIn bio, resume or when someone asks the dreaded question “Tell me about yourself.”
THEN: Be consistent: Stick to it. Repetition = memory. Use the same words. I’m the Boss Lady. Everybody knows me for that.
Here are a few examples of personal brand statements:
- Family 1st! But after that, Businessman – a dude that loves the hustle, people & the NY Jets (Gary Vaynerchuk)
- Sharing things I’m learning through my foundation work and other interests. (Bill Gates)
- Speaker of the House, focused on strengthening America’s middle class and creating jobs; mother, grandmother, dark chocolate connoisseur. (Nancy Pelosi)
- Fighting to end Washington corruption and make our government work for everyone. (Elizabeth Warren)
- Make your own well-being the start of global wellness. (Deepak Chopra)
- I’m the SEO geek who gets you more traffic
- I’m the Cosmetics Queen who makes you gorgeous
It took me years of evolution to become The Boss Lady. I had to answer my own what is personal branding question.
I needed to recognize and own my relentless drive to pull my clients forward. My clients know I’m bossy because I care about their success, even if I risk annoying them.
Now I’m proud to call myself that because it’s really me, personally and professionally. It is also an homage to the real BOSS (Springsteen), of who I’m a lifelong fan. Read my story here
Not everyone will want to work with me, but that’s OK, the right ones will.
If you’re looking to define your personal brand, don’t go it alone.
Call The Boss Lady, because I’m hell-bent on creatively guiding companies to win new business. (My personal branding statement)