Known for writing the New York Times’ best-selling book The Four-Hour Work Week, Tim Ferriss has reached millions of people who are looking for ways to succeed in the business world. One of his main points revolves around personal branding and reputation.
“Personal branding is about managing your name — even if you don’t own a business — in a world of misinformation, disinformation, and semi-permanent Google records. Going on a date? Chances are that your “blind” date has Googled your name. Going to a job interview? Ditto.”
What is personal branding?
Personal branding is the practice of marketing yourself and your career in an effort to promote a powerful and attractive impression of yourself. A strong personal brand generates a reputable online image, a stimulating, multi-faceted approach to in-person interaction, and an association to relevant established brands. Branding yourself has become a requirement when pursuing an executive position—and one that is unique will help you stand out amongst the many other applicants.
– Social media: Platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram are all great ways to promote yourself. Each has a different goal, but all of them contribute in some way to your online persona. Whether it is through conversation, photos, or a business profile, they give you the chance to create a compelling brand by posting consistent and relevant media that make people want to follow, listen, and know more.
– Search engine optimization: At the executive level, a quick Google search can reveal a lot of information about you, so it is important to stay in control of what gets to the top of the list. The best way to do that is by registering URLs for your name and linking it to a WordPress or Medium platform. It doesn’t need to be rich in information, but with a couple of updates per a month, it should be Google-friendly enough to make you visible.
– Online profiles: Some platforms offer you a faster and easier way of presenting yourself. Websites such as About.me focus on a simple display of who you are and what you do in one click. Impress.ly does just about the same but concentrates on its mobile application while Visualize.me is a one-click solution for visualizing your resume online. Through these platforms, anyone of any skill level can quickly create a visually appealing online presentation of themselves.
Your online persona is not the only way to build your brand. Every photo, video, or article that you share, every tweet you send, and every status you update contributes to your brand. In-person conversation is no different. Everything you say and do will contribute to your personal brand, so it is important to be prepared to share significant aspects of your career history and business style. Of course, the people you talk with can find your business and hobbies online, creating a cycle of online and in-person networking.
Boost Your Brand by Networking
The best way to boost your brand is by associating yourself with established brands. Mentioning the company you work for, your school, and perhaps some well-established colleagues you’ve worked with along the way will give you a boost in visibility. Join your alumni society, attend networking events in your field, and get involved with organizations; for example, write for your company blog.
When you shape your online presence, and associate yourself with relevant established brands, you become more attractive to recruiters. When that happens, you’ll see more opportunities knocking at your door.