Unlike most individuals interested in building their personal brands in today’s world, Henry Ford didn’t reinvent the wheel every time he produced a car.
Rather, Henry Ford created an efficient system, or process, for building and selling cars.
Once he perfected the system, he was able to refine and fine-tune the process until his established new benchmarks of consistency and productivity.
The success of Henry Ford’s system, captured in the photograph of him standing with his 10 millionth automobile, (photo courtesy IncWell.com, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division) reminds all of us that we need to create our own systems for writing and personal branding success.
7 productivity tips for personal branding success
Here are some tips for creating your own efficient and personalized productivity system for personal branding success.
- Start with the end in mind. What is the “big idea,” or lasting impression, you want to communicate? Is it relevant to your intended readers? Is the idea simple enough to be remembered? Is the idea uniquely yours? Most important, Do you know how you can monetize, or productize, your big idea? Production without profit leads to bankruptcy!–no matter how good your cars, or your ideas and capabilities.
- Select monthly themes for the upcoming year. Each month, for the next 12 months, focus your marketing on one aspect of your brand that you can approach in your various brand-building efforts. Knowing your monthly themes in advance will simplify your ongoing brand-building marketing and writing.
- Choose weekly topics. Create a detailed editorial calendar for each week during the upcoming quarter. Referring to your monthly themes, choose a topic for marketing messages each week that relates and supports your previously chosen monthly topic. This focuses your efforts and reinforces your monthly themes.
- Plan before you write. Create a simple content plan for each article or blog post before you start to write. Know how you’re going to engage your readers’ interest. Decide how you’re going to explain the relevance of each topic–i.e., how readers will benefit from reading the topic. Identify the three main ideas, or points, you intend to cover in each topic. And end with a summary and a call to action that advances your brand. (See marketing planning resources here.)
- Write before you edit. Separate writing from editing. Whenever possible, devote 2 writing sessions to each article or blog post. During the first session, focus on getting your ideas down as quickly as possible. Resist the temptation to self-edit. During the second session, revise for easy reading. Look for long words you can replace with short words, passive verbs you can replace with active verbs, and long sentences you can replace with shorter sentences.
- Save, back-up, and print. Save each of your blog posts as a word-processed document if you normally prepare them online, using your blogging software. Then, save it on your computer, and back it up off-line. Finally, print a copy of your article or blog post on 3-ring paper, and inset it in a 3-ring binder. Finally, create a spreadsheet or mind map with the titles and links to each blog post and word processed file. This helps you locate topics later.
- Promote and repurpose each topic. Schedule a series of Tweets and reminders to announce and reminders to promote your latest article and blog posts. There are a variety of utilities that can space your reminders throughout the day. Then, explore ways you can recycle each topic, perhaps as parts of an ebook, tip sheet, or white paper. Look for ways you can reformat your idea as an animation, an audio podcast, or as a YouTube video. Good ideas are too valuable to use just once!
Creating your own “Henry Ford personal branding system”
With a little practice, you can create an efficient personalized writing system that will save you time and improve the quality of your personal brand-building efforts. This will allow you to be consistently visible with relevant, helpful information that positions you as the “go to” expert in your field.
Once you’ve done it for your personal brand-building, you can expand your writing productivity to include other aspects of your career success, i.e., preparing for interviews, writing effective memos and new business proposals, and all the other types of writing you’re likely to prepare during the course of a work week.
Roger C. Parker invites you to use his online form to ask your questions about writing for brand building success. Roger can help you choose the right topics, create an editorial calendar, and learn how to write more in less time. Or, download Roger’s free 99 Questions to Ask You Start to Write workbook.