It used to be that hiring was limited to who’s local and available. But the advent of the Internet and social media has really made the world smaller and more at reach. Social media has changed the way people see brands, and it has changed the way people promote and market their personal brand.
Going on a personal brand communication plan can be challenging and requires planning. You need to know your strategy step by step before executing them. It is not wise to simply jump into the game without having any idea what you really want to achieve. Important to that is the foundation – what is your personal brand?
Define your personal brand
First, it’s about getting to know yourself and what you’re all about. What do you want? What are your goals and objectives? What are your passions? What are you great at? What do you want to achieve?
Once you’ve determined these things, you can really start getting a concrete impression of what your personal brand is about and communicating this to others. The values and ethics you carry with you are just as important. You want your audience to align themselves with your brand and vision. The more your audience is able to relate with you, the better for your brand.
The relationships you have with other people also define your personal brand. No man is an island, and you really can’t survive in the real world without having any connections or doing any networking.
You know what they say: It’s not what you know, but who you know. One of the keys to a successful brand is to establish mutually beneficial relationships with others. And you really have to own these relationships – make sure that you always give your hundred percent to all the things you do, so that no one can ever say that you aren’t doing enough. And try to avoid sending a representative on your behalf – make sure that you always have the time to network and connect with people yourself.
Utilize social media
Social media is currently the most popular tool for promoting and marketing your brand, which is why the term “social marketing” has become so popular. But always remember that you shouldn’t use it simply as a marketing tool – “social” is basically for connecting and engaging with your audience, not simply selling them your products or services.
And though content may help you engage your audience, remember that people continue to enjoy interacting with a real person, not a nameless, faceless creature. If you manage a Facebook page, for example, ensure that the people who interact with you there know who they’re interacting with. You want them to picture a face behind the brand, a real person, someone who considers them and cares about what they think.
Make your interactions more personal. Share tidbits of your personal life with them so they can relate with your personal brand. Learn more about your audience and do your best to help them as much as possible. Go the extra mile for your customers, clients or boss.
When you provide value, you’re seen as a resource. This is a much more viral tone than a sales-y one that’s constantly pitching and barking offers. There is a thin line between marketing your brand and pushing your brand down people’s throats.
If you’re just looking to sell your products and services every single day, then you’re better off using other marketing platforms and not social media. Social is about engagement. Maybe you can mix in a bit of marketing and promotions, but the main thing you should be doing in social media platforms is talking, connecting, engaging and responding to your followers. Listen to them, help them with their problems, and build a mutually satisfying relationship. Don’t be a brand who’s only determined to sell – be the brand who cares about others first.
Personal branding and social marketing
Utilizing social media for your personal brand is definitely an excellent idea, but don’t just jump head first into your personal brand communication campaign. Make sure you plan ahead, and remember that social continues to be about engagement and connecting.
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 conversation, connection, credibility, community and commerce around your brand. Maria Duron is co-founder and moderator of #brandchat – a weekly Twitter chat focused on every aspect of branding that is recognized by Mashable as one the 15 Essential Twitter Chats for Social Media Marketers.