[Disclosure: This post is sponsored by antvibes.com]
A personal branding world
Personal branding can play a pivotal role in your professional life, whether you are applying for a job, applying for school, or trying to gain new clients. If people like your brand, they will be more apt to help you or become business partners. If they don’t like your brand, don’t expect any favors.
Although forming your personal brand integrates various strategies such as maintaining a professional LinkedIn page, having an appropriate business card, or operating your own blog or website, many people forget that the first encounter you have with another person, and your first chance to make an impression, is often through email.
Don’t forget about your email
Dan Schawbel tells us “Don’t overlook your email address as not being a significant part of your toolkit. Most people use email over all social networks…Your email address poses a great opportunity for your brand.” By taking advantage of your very first email communication, you can effectively shape your personal brand right from the start.
However, be sure to use caution. Dan continues to say, “When it comes to the web, you are judged solely on what is observable.” This means care must be taken to assure the appropriate messages about your brand are being conveyed, such as professionalism and intellectualism. For any important email communication be sure to proofread your work and utilize a spell/grammar check tool. Read your email aloud; does it sound clear and is your writing concise? Eliminate unnecessary words or phrases and cut to the chase. As always, be polite and courteous (unless the situation calls for otherwise.)
A new email introduction tool
Technology in the digital age is always presenting new innovations, and emails shouldn’t feel left out.
I’m the founder of an interesting new communication tool called an ANT, or Audible Name Tag, (www.antvibes.com) which is available to help you strengthen your personal brand through emails. An ANT is an icon that is linked to your personal audible v-card and travels in your email signature field. When the icon is clicked, your audible v-card is displayed, containing your contact information, photo, and a pronunciation of your name, in your own voice.
A recording of your own voice is simple, yet can be a powerful part of your personal branding arsenal. Libby Webber, former BBC radio and TV producer, explains that “We make assumptions and build stereotypes based on the sound of others’ voices. Politicians, actors and singers undertake years of voice coaching to train their voices to sound a particular way, to promote a particular message or image.”
For the average person, voice coaching is probably not necessary but utilizing your voice can still have an impact on the way others view your brand. Do you want others to see your brand as strong and assertive? As caring and loving? Your voice and tone can help convey the desired message quickly and makes an immediate impression on whoever is hearing it. In addition, the ANT v-card also consolidates your web presence, bringing together contact information and social media links, making it easy to connect to your Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter page.
Allowing others to read your name, see your face, and hear your voice is the ultimate combination for creating memory and recognition of your brand through email. Effectively utilizing your email is an important part of furthering your personal brand, reflecting your personal identity, and letting others know who you are and what you represent. In a world where image is everything, take control of your personal brand and don’t leave details to the imagination.
Vigen Nazarian is the founder of ANTVibes Inc. After enduring years of having his name pronounced incorrectly, he invented the Audible Name Tag (ANT) to help introduce himself to others in his professional life. Learn more at the ANTVibes website or the ANTVibes blog called The Mispronounced Name.