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A Sustainable Approach To Personal Branding

04 September 2018

(Personal Branding, Melbourne, Branding)

Personal branding often gets a bad wrap. When we think about personal brands, we picture those people who fight for our attention only to share a message that serves their own needs. This isn't personal branding, it's just a poor sales strategy. 

Proper personal branding is the art of sharing your expertise with the people who want to know about it. It's a conscious effort to stay in touch with your contacts while opening the door to new opportunities at the same time.

Building a consistent and informational personal brand will always pay dividends over time. We only need to look around us to see the technological shifts that are digitalising our everyday life - at some point, our online presence - and how we manage it - will be more than good practice. 

So, how can you make a start? 

Firstly, it's not a race.

We live in a world full of people preaching hustle and 'the grind' like it's a religion. It's easy to get caught looking at what other people are doing and either rushing to copy them or feeling the pressure to post at the same frequency. But remember, "the smallest dog barks the loudest". When it comes to your personal brand, your competition is yourself and small incremental gains over time is the key.

Which may look like this. 

1. Organising a better profile picture for LinkedIn and updating it.

2. Tweaking your bio to match your current job, values and accolades.

3. Reaching out to one former colleague a week. 

Secondly, be realistic. 

Once we've fine-tuned our profiles - a continual process that's never really finished - we can think about what we're going to share. Lately, I've been urging my clients to share one article a month, that's it. 

Why just one? 

It's realistic. To create something worth reading thought needs to go into what's being shared. One article a month is achievable, manageable and believe me when done well will drive enough engagement for great monthly results. 

Around this monthly article, you'll then be able to share the odd milestone from work, staff achievement or friends posts.

And thirdly, consistency is the key.

Seth Godin said this in his blog titled The Drip. "The challenging part, and the reason that change doesn't happen as often as it should is that we get distracted. Today's urgent is more urgent than yesterday's important."

The number one killer of the personal brand is a lack of consistency and persistence. The strongest personal brands, ones that aren't formed out of necessity, but rather generosity last. They last because each time the person shares something, they're giving something back. 

When we build our personal brand to connect and share knowledge we usually see a real appreciation for the time we put in - this is often enough to back it up next month with another article.

When we put our hands out every time we post, generally it's left hanging. As humans we hate rejection; it's no surprise that we see so many people's activity online dormant for years when we visit their profile.

In summary...

1. It's not a race - building your personal brand at your own pace is fine; you just need to be moving forward.

2. Be realistic - start small, one article per month is 12 more connections to your online network than last year. 

3. Consistency is the key - sharing something out of generosity is easier than sharing something out of necessity. Just keep the wheels turning, always. 

I hope this has got you thinking. What can you do to get the ball rolling with your personal brand?

Daniel Kovac - Marketing Director/Founder

"I'm currently helping business leaders achieve their own monthly article by (1) optimising their online profile (2) identifying the articles that will best serve their audience (3) editing a supplied draft (4) professionally publishing the article online on their behalf. If this interests you, feel free to drop me a line - Dan"

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