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How to Boost Your Personal Brand
You can probably identify a few companies simply based on their legendary slogans. For example, “The Quicker Picker Upper” for Bounty paper towels or Apple’s “Think Different”. The fact that you can rattle off companies and their correlating slogans means their marketing team has succeeded in brand awareness, identification, and loyalty.
In many ways, the goal of your personal brand is the same. You want to publicly identify your values, how you serve your target audience, and what makes you different from the competition. Working to boost your personal brand means your clearly communicating your story to potential clients and employees.
But how do you do that? How can you tell your story accurately and in a memorable way? How can you get more people to know who you are? Let’s uncover that. Keep reading to learn six tactical ways you can boost your personal brand.
1. Be Introspective
It’s hard to communicate your values if you don’t have a good understanding of who you are. With some self-reflection, you can identify what’s important to you and what motivates you every day.
Begin by making a list of personal and professional strengths and weaknesses. It’s also helpful to learn your personality type and character traits through tools like Myers-Briggs, Enneagram, or Strengths Finders. The results of these tests can provide deep, insightful information that might be difficult to admit or identify within yourself.
2. Dream Big
If you’re in the pursuit of boosting your own personal brand, it’s likely that you’re a “dreamer” – someone that has a big imagination, endless enthusiasm, and is a go-getter.
As you’re working through the future and self-discovery, you need to have a clear idea of how you want others to perceive you (not how you perceive yourself). Your personal brand is a reflection of who you are currently, but it is also a representation of who you aspire to be tomorrow.
Think about traits – specifically adjectives – that make you unique from your competition. For example, everyone wants to be innovative, so if this is one of your claims, what truly makes you more innovative from the next guy? Be specific and truthful in your aspirations.
3. Discover Your Audience
Putting money toward personal brand awareness can be a waste if it falls on deaf ears. That’s why it’s important to identify who you’re targeting and speaking to. Knowing your audience informs you of the language you’ll use that will truly resonate with your listeners.
This information can also point you in the direction of where to advertise and reach your audience. For instance, if you’re targeting Gen Z-ers, your ads on LinkedIn might be overlooked or missed completely by this group, whereas, posting on Instagram or Snapchat might produce better results.
4. Refine Your Pitch
Your elevator pitch – the 30-60 second spiel that quickly tells your story – can make or break your brand’s success. Rather than just replying with your job title, sharing your brand story gives you the opportunity to make an outstanding impression that may bring in new business in the long run.
By simply telling someone, “I’m a graphic designer”, you run the risk of the listener making their own assumptions or calling on their own experiences with a designer. Instead, consider replying with something like:
“I spend my days designing illustrations for websites, brands, and organizations. I’m passionate about finding creative concepts to tell a story and creating memorable and shareable drawings for companies.”
It’s brief but detailed enough (without industry jargon) that the average Joe can understand what you do. The next time someone is the market for a graphic designer, they’re more likely to remember your quick elevator pitch than someone that simply mentioned their job title at an event.
5. Step Out of Your Comfort Zone
Simply put – people will never learn who you are if you don’t put yourself out there and network. Not only do you want to connect with potential clients, but also with industry leaders and professionals who are in the same line of work.
Building a professional circle gives you the chance to learn from their experiences and ask their advice, but more importantly, they may be able to send referrals your way. Look into local industry events and conferences so you can meet others who can help boost your brand.
6. Get Online
It’s no secret that your online presence is critical to your brand’s success in today’s day and age of technology and social media. When someone Googles you or your brand name, what populates in the search results? This is your digital footprint, and believe it or not, it’s something you can manage.
In addition to your Google search results, spend time investing in your website and social media profiles. Since websites influence 97% of purchasing decisions, it’s a worthy investment to make sure it’s in top shape. If you’re not technically savvy, consider hiring a design agency to handle the work for you.
With these tips, your brand can rise to the top and through the noise. Although this uptick won’t happen overnight, identifying your values and clearly communicating them will inevitably lead to a boost in your personal brand.
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