Personal branding: The right way to show off in digital space – Business Daily
In an era of personal branding, where jobseekers or employees blow their own trumpet, what are the rules? Has personal branding become a must-do, especially for the very talented still winking in the dark?
When an employer is seeking to promote or hire, how one portrays themselves in the organisation or on social media is increasingly becoming a consideration.
People showing off their skills to get noticed whilst cultivating a personal brand are being picked for big roles.
Richard Magoma, a human resource practitioner, says that showing off gives one an upper hand. Being a brand is about being known, he adds.
Personal branding is creating a unique identity while targeting a particular audience so that they can see you as the solution to their problem.
Grace Nzula, a HR consultant and trainer from Atarah Solutions says feedback from people helps you know if the personal branding strategies are working in your favour and how they perceive you.
Do not do passive personal branding, Mr Magoma says. It is either you go big or go home.
“Personal branding has to be very specific. You can’t also be running all over. You have to pick a specific competence that you specialise in to become an expert. People will associate you with that in the long-term.”
Ms Nzula notes that having a unique selling point makes you stand out in a jumbled world full of wannabes. The use of a catchy phrase, for instance, can be used to identify you as a brand.
So how do you show off your brand?
In a cutthroat job market, you must be consistent to outshine your competitors, Mr Magoma says. Make the social media posts regular. This is of utmost importance.
The posts have to show elements of creativity, innovation, controversy, and authority without tiring readers or viewers.
However, as you start creating the brand, do not mind whether your posts are attracting as many engagements in terms of likes or comments because as time goes by people will start noticing your work.
“Brands are a product of trust and trust is a product of consistency. There are no holidays in personal branding,” Mr Magoma says.
To be consistent, create a bank of written text that you can post every so often. The articles bank comes in handy when you fall ill or get overwhelmed.
However, deliberately not posting for some time helps a brand gauge its influence.
“If you do not post and your audience doesn’t notice then there is something amiss in how you are representing yourself as a brand,” he says, adding that having a cheering squad that positively criticises your brand also shapes you to be better.
Mr Magoma notes that answering questions that affect people or are of public interest helps put your brand first in the search engines.
What is the role of language in personal branding?
As there is nothing new under the sun, research on the best language and words that makes one attract a crowd. This helps also you shape your words, phrases and sentences in a way that attracts your desired audience.
Mr Magoma opines that also choosing a medium of communication that suits the target audience can give you an upper hand.
How does controversy help in personal branding?
In branding, no controversy gets wasted. However, emotional intelligence should be key when responding to or creating controversy with Ms Nzula saying, “You do not have to show up in every battle you are invited in especially by social media critics.”
However, Mr Magoma notes that controversy is a show of a brand losing content saying it can cost you dearly and it does not last long.
“Controversy is something that is not the usual, it is there for shock value, a message to get out of boredom but a brand has to retain their original identity,” he says.
What are the don’ts of showing off as a way of personal branding?
To remain at the top or just surface in search engines, some people exaggerate. “This can be detrimental to the growth of your brand,” Mr Magoma warns.
Lying about what one’s brand entails can destroy their reputation when accorded an opportunity and fail to deliver.
What are the challenges of personal branding?
If your brand has an online base, cyberbullying can be inevitable. A brand’s online account can also be hacked and misinformation spread on the account.
Ms Nzula also notes that an online personal brand can backfire depending on the persona one chooses.
“If it backfires it means that during your creation, you adopted a persona that is not you and maybe failed at how you communicated about that persona,” she says.
Be warned that the internet does not forget, therefore one needs to be careful when building a brand.