Personal branding is a way to differentiate yourself in the marketplace to attain your goals such as, getting that dream job, becoming a celebrity blogger, by defining your personal niche in the business world. The process includes defining your brand and brand attributes, positioning your personal brand and then managing all aspects of your personal brand.


credit: Shutterstock

Step 1: Defining Your Goals Take the time to clearly define your goals and objectives. “I want to be the best Personal Coach in the industry, Blogger to the Stars, definitive expert on buying used cars, Portfolio Manager of the largest Commercial Real Estate Company, Celebrity Chef Entrepreneur, YouTube Channel Infommercial Expert, CEO, Spokeswoman or Sports Commentator.”

Step 2: Do Your Market Research. Define your competitors? Who are they? What services do they offer that are the same? Different? How can you up your ante and service offerings or create a niche that differentiates yourself? What can you learn from analyzing similar people in your industry.

Step 3: Determine your brand attributes.  What words would you use to describe personal brand?

  • Conservative or progressive?
  • Urban or outdoorsy?
  • Casual or professional?
  • Funny and playful or serious?
  • Big or small?
  • Leader or underdog?
  • Stylish and fashionable or plain and practical?
  • Thrifty or affluent?
  • Outspoken or reserved?
  • Dynamic or stable?
  • Predictable or surprising?
  • Stable or fluid?

Step 4: Where you ARE and where you want to BE. What you are now and what you want to be is like a game of Connect the Dots. You have to understand where you are now (painful as it may be) and have the end game in mind. The path from here to there is easy to layout once you have both ends well defined.

Step 5: The game plan. Every step you take from here on in is done to promote your long term brand equity. Your peronal branding  needs to include all aspects of you, as a product. Your characteristics of personal branding including wardrobe, hair, makeup, behavior, verbal and body language.

Your plan needs to include designing your digital media and the platforms you will use to promote your personal brand (such as LinkedIn, Facebook , Twitter, blogs, referall network marketing, strategic alliances, and brand associations) and how you will use each of those aspects to build your brand.

Step 6: Manage your brand. Proactively manage all aspects of your brand, ensuring these aspects are in sync and that they continue to reinforce your brand attributes and market niche.

Make sure that your messaging across platforms is consistent. Your profile images should look like you but are appropriate to use (social media versus boardroom), your social media message, newsletters and blog should be consistent messaging, and your in persona should be conistent with your prefession (wearing suits if you are meeting with prospective business clients)

Stick with one message, one look, one feeling, one service, one goal.

Bottom Line: The single goal of your personal brand is to crystallize the flavor of customer experience you deliver. This should influence your strategy for every point from here forward — your tone in communications and messaging. Design of your front line customer experience. And every in between. Consistent messaging from back to front, inside and out.

Rules of Personal Branding:

  1. Branding = Power = Credibility
  2. Every decision from here in is made to promote your long term brand equity
  3. People have to relate to or want to be you. People are buying the result  of what you have to offer
  4. Brand my controlled message
  5. 4 Types of branding: Personal Brand, Brand Association, Brand Innovation, Brand Legacy
  6. People dont buy because: You have not branded yourself as a problem solver or solution finder, your product or service has not convinced the person that can not solve their problem, or the person has no need for your product or service
  7. You must alleviate dissatisfaction
  8. You must resolve or be an improvement to what thier current situation has
  9. Your brand is a natural extension or compliment to their lives rather than a disruption
  10. successful business models talk about what they can do for a client while the average entrepreneur talks about what they can do for the other person
  11. people buy the reputation that a brand guarantees them. Credibility = trust
  12. Build relationships. People buy people first
  13. people dont buy insurance, they buy the feeling of security
  14. Primary + Secondary Influencers. Primary are reasons why they buy without thinking. Secondary are the excuses and reasons they dont
  15. Why Me? What is your niche?
  16. Brand preference  -> Brand Awareness -> Brand Insistence

Your business brand reflects your personal brand. Your personal brand reflects your story.