Personal branding has never been as important as it is today. To achieve success in this world, you really need to manage your reputation well; otherwise, people and companies have worldwide reach to find anyone who “does what you do” or “sells what you sell”.
Though you may be valuable in the company you work in right now or in the services you offer to people, the question is, are you invaluable? If you quit from your job today or decide to stop offering your services to your clients, would they be able to easily replace you?
Make your brand invaluable
But how do you become an invaluable personal brand? How do you remain profitable even during tough economic times? Here are some tips:
1.Keep yourself up to date with the current market trends
If you want to be an invaluable brand, it’s important that you’re always up to date with the current market and industry trends. You need to stay on top of things and you should never let your skills become outdated and obsolete.
Competition makes it essential to grab every opportunity that comes your way to discover and learn something new. You cannot remain stagnant and hope that you will always be employed or that someone’s always going to be in need of your services. If you don’t keep up, you will be left behind, struggling for survival as other people move forward, achieving success.
So always keep studying, learning and discovering. Join classes, sign up for training courses related to your niche, and participate in seminars. Be invaluable by being incredibly knowledgeable about your specialty and industry.
2.Create strong personal connections
Engaging with your audience is important, that’s for sure. But more than that, it’s become essential for brands to create strong personal connections.
Trust is an invaluable commodity when it comes to business relationships. People don’t trust easily these days, which is why gaining someone’s trust can make you invaluable as well as profitable.
Utilize all the means and platforms available to you for interacting and connecting with your audience. Because people prefer communicating in different ways, it’s important that you use many different platforms in order to ensure that you connect with your clients and followers.
Social media, for example, has become a vital tool for personal brands to connect on a consistent people with people they know.
Yet, even more important than “channel” is HOW you connect. “Be interested to be interesting”. Be interested and involved in your connections lives. Take an interest it what’s important to them, what they’re facing, or what they’re working on. Think in ways of “how you can help” them in their daily lives and challenges. Be involved in your community, participate in charitable causes, and find opportunities to give back wherever you can.
3.Be consistent, timely and relevant
These three are very important in creating an invaluable brand that is profitable. First of all, you need to be consistent in the services you offer as well as your interactions with people. Avoid being wishy-washy; be true to what your brand stands for and always give what your clients have come to expect, so that your audience won’t become disillusioned and turn to other brands.
This is tough since values and personal brands are often sacrificed for a chance at immediate profit.
Being timely is also vital nowadays. The digital world has made people incredibly impatient. They demand a lot from brands; they want the quickest response possible to their queries or comments. So do your best to develop systems that work for you, so you can be timely when it comes to responding.
And lastly, be relevant. You want people to relate with you, engage with you, and connect with you. If what you offer isn’t relevant to their lives, then there’s really no point in them staying connected with you. Listening is key and the only way for you to gauge if you know what’s important to them. This will make you an invaluable asset to your clients and customers.
To become a truly profitable personal brand, it’s not enough to be valuable. You need to be irreplaceable- someone who delivers on the company brand promise in a way that is unique and relevant.
The challenge is that most have not unearthed the identity of their true personal brand and what makes them so unique, which is the most important part of personal branding.
Maria Elena Duron, is managing editor of the Personal Branding Blog, CEO (chief engagement officer) of buzz2bucks.com – a word of mouth marketing firm. She helps create connection, credibility, community and cha-ching through mobile marketing and social commerce around your brand. She is co-founder of #brandchat – a weekly Twitter chat focused on every aspect of branding.