Build Your Personal Brand


By Bernard Marr

Building and maintaining my personal brand is an important part of my job. But it’s becoming important in so many professions, way beyond the realms of influencers, entrepreneurs, and thought leaders. Whether you’re an architect, entrepreneur, designer, blogger, lawyer, or whatever, your personal brand can help you stand out from the crowd and attract exciting new opportunities your way.

If you think about it, you already have a personal brand. Everyone has one. If a potential employer or client were to Google your name, they’d probably find your LinkedIn and social media profiles, perhaps followed by any news articles featuring your name or any other websites that mention you. What impression would someone get of you based on the search results? This, essentially, is your personal brand. It’s your online reputation.

Personal branding means taking control of your online reputation and shaping it, so people see you in the way you want to be seen.

So, if you search for my name online, you’ll see my own website, then my latest tweets, my LinkedIn profile, my YouTube channel, and then my other social media profiles. Even just a quick glance at these results is enough to tell you I’m an expert in future technologies, digital transformation, and driving business performance. You’ll see the same (professional) photos of me and read the same voice (mine). All of that contributes to my brand. It’s consistent. It tells a story about who I am and what I do.

Of course, social media isn’t the only way to establish your brand, but it does play a huge role. Here are 12 ways you can use social media to your advantage and sharpen your personal brand.

1. First things first, get your profiles in order. Add a professional, up-to-date photo to your social media profiles, using the same photo across different platforms to ensure consistency. Then clean up your profiles by deleting any content that you wouldn’t want potential employers or clients to see. (You can always maintain a private profile for sharing personal things that you don’t want employers or clients to see.)

2. Be yourself. While you want to cultivate a professional brand, it’s important to let your personality shine through in your social media posts. Write in the way you’d normally speak. Be authentic. Be honest. Talk about things that really matter to you (rather than trying to hop on the latest trends). And don’t pretend to be someone you’re not. This is all part of ensuring your brand stays consistent.

3. Share what you’re learning. Something that I’ve found impactful – and easy – is sharing interesting and relevant news stories from my industry on social media. This really helped me build my profile and stay knowledgeable on what’s happening in my field. To keep up to date with interesting and relevant news stories, you can subscribe to industry newsletters or, even easier, set up Google alerts for certain keyword topics. Do be sure to add your own message when you share something on social media – even if it’s just “I came across this today and thought I’d share it. What do you guys think?”

4. Join industry groups on social media platforms. Then make yourself known by engaging with posts, answering questions, and liking, commenting, and sharing other people’s content in the group.

5. Be generous with your time and knowledge. Be helpful to others online by responding to questions and comments and generally engaging with them. And do take the time to like or amplify other content that you found engaging, inspiring, or useful. Basically, be reciprocal.

6. Make new contacts as often as you can, especially on LinkedIn. You can do this by identifying people you want to connect with in your field and sending a certain number of invites each week, with a short personal message. Make a habit of this, and your network will soon grow.

7. Create quick polls to pose interesting questions and boost engagement. You can always mix it up by posting a mixture of professional and more general questions.

8. Post quality photos and videos from your work life. People love visual content, so if you’re at a work conference, attending an industry event, on the way to visit a client, or whatever, share it. You can mix it up with occasional “everyday” photos and videos while still keeping it fairly professional (think your morning cup of coffee when you’re working from home, that sort of thing).

9. Really, you can post any sort of content that will help to cement your reputation – it could be advice, thought-provoking questions, excerpts from presentations you’ve given, pro tips, how-to content, or whatever.

10. If you really want to establish your expertise, consider writing longer-form articles and sharing them on LinkedIn. I did a lot of this – still do, in fact – and it has played a huge role in growing my personal brand.

11. Use cross-platform tools to make your life easier. For example, you can use a tool like Hootsuite to schedule your posts in advance and share posts across multiple platforms, such as Instagram and YouTube, all from one place. This means you can get maximum value from each piece of content without having to physically post it in multiple places.

12. Try pencilling in a specific time each day or week for social media. You may actively want to limit the amount of time you spend on social media (it can be a huge time suck). So, I find it helps to schedule posts in advance and block out specific times to check in with social media, reply to comments, and see other people’s posts.

Feature Image Credit: Adobe Stock

By Bernard Marr

Bernard Marr is an internationally best-selling author, popular keynote speaker, futurist, and a strategic business & technology advisor to governments and companies. He helps organisations improve their business performance, use data more intelligently, and understand the implications of new technologies such as artificial intelligence, big data, blockchains, and the Internet of Things. Why don’t you connect with Bernard on Twitter (@bernardmarr), LinkedIn (https://uk.linkedin.com/in/bernardmarr) or instagram (bernard.marr)?

Sourced from Forbes


Business growth expert Shanee Moret shares how you can grow and monetize your personal brand without spending all day on social media.

Shanee Moret never wanted to build a personal brand, she was forced to. While her daughter was in the hospital she was given an ultimatum by her manager, get back to work or you’re fired. As you can imagine, she chose the latter.

To support herself she offered copywriting services but she ran into another problem, she absolutely hated cold calling. The solution? Start creating content on LinkedIn to attract inbound leads. She gave herself 30 days to make it work and by all accounts it certainly has. Today Shanee has well over one million followers on LinkedIn and helps other entrepreneurs build their brand and revenue as the founder of Growth Academy.

Shanee sat down to talk with me about how she built and monetized her brand – and how you can do the same – during the latest episode of the Launch Your Business podcast.

Here are a few of my favourite takeaways.

How to Tell Your Story

We all have a personal brand. Personal branding just allows you to have more control over the narrative. The best way to get started is by learning how to tell your story. But, your story shouldn’t just be about you, it should reflect how you’re uniquely suited to help your target audience.

As Shanee states “It’s all about understanding who you want to attract and understanding what they’re struggling with. From there you can determine how you could leverage your own story to attract those people.”

One framework I recommend for this is Donald Miller’s Storybrand. In short, you position your audience as the star of the story, then talk about how you’ll help them find success and avoid failure based on your own experiences.

Shanee also speaks to why it’s important to be vulnerable and authentic. And look, I know those are both overused buzzwords, but she shared the impact it has on her business and how it can help you as well.

“I’m speaking to them emotionally, I’m using my own experiences. But because they resonate with it they’re going to be attracted to what I’m saying. It’s going to spark their curiosity. It’s going to make them come back to the content, engage and increase the chances of them becoming a client”

Need more help telling your story? Ask your friends and family what stands out to them about you. We often overlook the most interesting parts of our own story because we’re too close to it.

Getting Over the Apprehension of Building a Personal Brand

One issue you may have with building your personal brand is, well, not wanting to share personal information. If that’s the case, Shanee has good news for you. “You don’t have to share your personal life to build a personal brand. Look at Gary Vaynerchuk, he barely shares anything about his personal life but he’s visible.”

So while you don’t have to share what you ate for breakfast, you do have to be visible. You can do this through text-based content, images or video. I realize I may have lost you at the video part and I can understand any apprehension you may have about it. When I first started creating videos I somehow looked angry and scared at the same time.

Shanee shared her rocky start as well “For the first one my hands are shaking. People look at me now and say ‘Oh, you’re so comfortable on video’. Yeah. This is like thousands of videos later. This is just a lot of practice and I’m still not the best. I still get nervous even before livestreams and masterclasses but I show up and I do it.”

Despite the challenges, she explains why she keeps showing up “I want the desired result of growth. I want to be able to provide for my daughter, my family at a generational wealth level more than I’m afraid of getting on a video.”

So, what will a personal brand do for you? Once you get clear on that you’ll have all the motivation needed to push through any of the associated challenges.

How to Monetize Your Personal Brand

The number one mistake Shanee’s see people make with their personal brand? They don’t have an offer for their audience. As a result, there’s no journey for their audience to go on once they know, like and trust you.

An offer can be as simple as encouraging people to join your email list, which is exactly what I do on LinkedIn. My weekly newsletter, The Solopreneur’s Shortcut, promises one thought, one time-saver and one tactic to help you grow your business and avoid burnout. It comes out on Friday and all week I tease out highlights of the newsletter content on LinkedIn. I then encourage people to join my email list so they can gain access to more detailed information. You can take a similar approach and then promote offers you charge for once someone joins your email list.

Shanee spoke about how your audience can help you craft that offer, and why it’s the key to monetizing your brand. “I’ve helped people build that offer because your community will reveal certain things and patterns over time that you could craft the perfect offer for them. And I feel like that mindset, that monetization is bad is why some people have big personal brands but they’re still ineffective”

Your personal brand can easily become a revenue generating asset, but that won’t happen until you extend an offer to your audience.

What’s next?

Those were a few key takeaways from my conversation with Dorie. To hear the full conversation and get access to additional resources tune in to this week’s episode of the Launch Your Business podcast.

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Feature Image Credit: Nick Nelson


Sourced from Entrepreneur