One of the oldest forms of communication (aside from written) is visualization. Visual communication dates back to cave paintings that told visual stories and branding cattle, which showed a sign of ownership. The earliest concept of branding was adopted from what we’ve observed in nature. The markings and patterns that we see on animals such as bees and snakes represent their species. Their markings can even communicate to us how dangerous or harmless these animals are. As we’ve evolved as humans, so did our use of symbols that represent a specific business and express a type of emotion or style.
What is a Personal Brand?
Today, a brand is much more than a texted-based logo and/or logo mark. Your brand is something that represents you as a business, person and professional. It is your personality, work ethic, style and even morals displayed across every aspect of social media.
Listed below are five tips to strengthen your personal brand.
1. A Clear Idea
Technology has evolved the way we think, feel and consume content; it has even affected our attention span. Because of technology the line that once was between our personal and professional lives is now often a gray area. The first step in having a stronger personal brand is having a very clear idea of what that brand actually is. Every tweet, comment and post is a reflection of who you are. Having a solid portfolio site is the best way to have a central hub for that branding image. Linking your social media accounts to your portfolio site is a great way to maintain consistency across all platforms. Your portfolio site should clearly display who you are, what you do, your attitude and unique style.
2. Networking, Face-to-Face
A huge part of branding yourself as a business and professional is networking. Technology has slowly and unknowingly limited our effort for face-to-face interactions. To this day, it is still very important to sell yourself and business face-to-face. People may or may not visit your site or tweet you on Twitter but they will always remember a smiling face. If they don’t, then they will remember what you say and how you said it. It takes that type of interaction to leave an impression on someone. Good impressions can lead to business deals, jobs, and even a valuable business relationship that can open doors in the future.
3. Create An Online Presence
Aside from in person interactions, social media undoubtedly has become a huge part of our lives. Utilizing the avenues of the Internet and building your personal brand takes dedication and most importantly time. This is not something that will happen over night, your content needs time to gain traction on the Internet. Having a good idea of your target audience can help fuel that content you create and share. Once you have an established brand, the hardest part is maintaining it.
4. Consistency (The Hard Part)
Procrastination is something that we all struggle with throughout our lives (some more than others). There are two ways to cure a bad case of procrastination. You can either stop telling yourself what you want to do, sit down and just do it or forget about it and let it go. Posting content consistently keeps your brand fresh and trendy. The best way to stay consistent is to schedule content in advance and try hard to stick to that schedule. Once you get into that workflow, keeping your social media accounts and website relevant will become an uncontrollable habit.
5. Don’t Forget To Be Human
Maintaining an online presence takes passion, consistency and dedication so don’t forget to be human. Sometimes we get too wrapped up in statistics and analytics. We tend to want to give people what we think they want to see and get sucked into the latest trends. Make sure you value and stand behind everything that represents your brand. It can’t be stressed enough on how important it is to be yourself.