Although it’s a constant uphill battle to build your brand, destroying or severely damaging it is scarily easy. In that vein, you’ll want to stay away from the following practices:
You might have multiple interests or passions. Think about which is the most important or most developed to focus your brand around. It can be confusing to others for you to be an expert in two or three completely different fields. What about your brand? Can it be expressed in six words or less, be memorable and convey a positive feeling about you?” He also gave examples such as, “What can Brown do for you?” and “Just Do It.”
Keeping Your Private Life Completely Separate
Gone are the days of keeping business and personal lives separate. You do not want to appear insincere in your efforts. In fact, people will respond and connect with you more if you come off as a real person. So, share stories and experiences with your audience. You’ll be surprised at the deeper connection you will form with each person.
Lack of Listening
Building a brand requires consistency – but it also requires listening to feedback. Do you know what people are saying about your brand? Set up a Google alert to catch new postings mentioning your name, or search Twitter. Genuinely read and listen to praise, criticism and feedback. It can only help you strengthen your brand further!
No Back Story
Everyone has a back story – where they grew up, where they draw inspiration from, why they are passionate about their field, their education, etc. Think about it: the celebrities and well-known people you look up to all have a back story, and you’ve probably heard it a dozen times. Where is President Obama from? How did Bill Gates get his start? These stories are important parts of their brand and allow people to relate to them. What’s yours?
You Think Visibility = Strong Brand
Don’t jump into social media and blogging before you give yourself time to create a strong personal brand. When creating yours, make certain you ask yourself the following questions:
- Who are you?
- What differentiates you from your competition?
- What do you want to do for the long-term?
You can damage your brand by presenting inconsistencies if you don’t consider these important elements of your brand first.
Is there anything else you would add? Have you ever been guilty of any of these?
Heather R. Huhman is a career expert and founder & president of Come Recommended, a career and workplace education and consulting firm specializing in young professionals. She is also the author of#ENTRYLEVELtweet: Taking Your Career from Classroom to Cubicle (2010), national entry-level careers columnist for Examiner.com and blogs about career advice at HeatherHuhman.com.