Personal Branding – What is it & why it’s important?

We are living in a very strange world. There are 16 billion people currently living in this world and how many people do you know personally and how many people do you trust? Certainly the numbers are very few if you exclude your family members. It’s very simple. We meet people at family events, school/college, at work, at bar/restaurants, etc. But we are not made to remember everybody until we engage with them and spend time with them. Am I correct? In that case, here it comes about “Personal Branding”. It’s not a new concept and everybody is practicing with or without knowing about it. By born, people tends to get remembered by others and obviously you should be proud of if any person know your name and what you do at least. Because if you see the examples of personal branding you will realize how much success their personal branding brings to them.

So, what is personal branding?

From definition standpoint “personal branding” means people will consider yourself as a brand. We go to Starbucks for coffee, KFC for fried chicken. People go there, love them, remember them because they are very popular brands. If you see KFC opened a new branch near your house, you will be happy. This is because of KFC brand image.

Your brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room

Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon

Now think about a person. In this case, think about yourself. KFC is a business brand but what about you? When you walk down the street, people know your name? No. When you post a tweet, people liked or engaged with that? No or very few people. But assume you are a brand (that we will discuss more in depth later) people know your name, they know what you do what you eat and where you go. They engage with you social media, they look for you in Google, stories about you attract them. It’s called personal branding. But don’t mix it up with media celebrity. Later, you will understand more details. Keep reading.

You already knew about it

There are lots of people we love to know about them. Somebody you often consider as an icon for your life. Sometime you want to become like that person. It’s 100% certain that in your entire lifetime you have somebody in your mind that you want to become like them. I personally made a list of all popular persons based on my similar profession, similar industry, some celebrity, some geeks. I regularly follow them on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook. In addition, for some person I have created an alert on Google so when any story will be publicly available I want to be the first to know about them. It’s interesting.

People are always want to market themselves. But most of them are not familiar with personal branding because they are doing it ultimately (making themselves as a brand). But when you will know what is personal branding and why it’s effective, then you will make it in your daily routine that will effectively boost your personal brand ranking.

Personal branding vs Business branding
Personal branding requires analysis, idea, mission and plan

Personal branding & business branding is different

Brand is a product with a specific name. You can name it whatever and however you want to. But to make it memorable and consume-able by people is the branding effort you need to develop and the entire process is called branding. A person or a product or a business itself can be a brand. Usually we are familiar with product and business branding. Like I said earlier KFC. KFC is a business, not a name of their product. Everybody know by their name. But let’s think in your nearest KFC menu, you love “hot chicken wing”. This is their product or item name. So people nearby love to eat that chicken wing so this item is also a brand.

I think you got my point about business branding and it’s product’s branding. Now let’s talk about personal branding. You are the business yourself as well as you are the only product of your own-self. So if you can make yourself a brand by doing inspirational activities, exceptional speech, by your social media activity and your thoughts or creativity then you are ultimately building yourself as a brand. People will start memorizing even your (@) twitter handle.

Difference between personal & business branding?

In that time when you are already a brand then if you open a store in your local area and make some social media post from your account about it’s products. People will already show interest to buy it. It’s because of your positive and effective personal branding. They don’t care whether you are selling bad products or not, you already got a large number of loyal audience who trust you from their heart and by their gut.

Businesses do branding to increase their sells and any individual will brand themselves to land a very higher position job or make meaningful impact in society for goods (or bad). Both types of branding are very important. But branding strategy varies for personal branding and business branding.

Personal branding is important

Why is personal branding important?

So I am assuming that you already understand about personal branding and the difference between personal branding and business branding. Now you can think why you are reading this long article when you already knew about it. Great point. Now it’s my responsibility to explain why personal branding is so important now-a-days. Is it really matter for your next career switch? Working to improve personal branding and giving focus on personal branding is really worthy of your time? Let’s see. Before moving ahead with my article, let me make some bullet point for you about why it’s important to maintain personal brand image.

Getting higher job position

If you can make yourself a brand, it would be much easier to get attraction from your industry. Large companies or their recruiter will know about you. Because they also want to use your influence to the society (not for you of course, for their own brand). At a certain time, you don’t need to find any job but you will start getting job invitation. People will find you because they know about you. They can easily find lot more about you online and from other media.

Personal branding is your best resume

Influence in the society

As a part of of your personal branding, you already made an impact to lots of people. So you will get your own voice heard by a large amount of audience. In addition, you will have a influence in the society as well as in your professional industry.

Less question about you

People already know about you and most of their questions about you is already answered. So people will know more in depth YOU and in result, there will be less question about who you are and what you do. It will reduce you to give repeated introduction about yourself.

You can be sold as a product

There will be lots of people and businesses who wants your affiliation with their network and without much hard work they will show their interest to buy your brand (temporarily but not permanently). Thus, you can sell yourself to multiple party.

Starting profitable business quickly

If you can make you as a brand, it will be much more easier to sell your own products to the people who are already loyal to you. Unlike any other startup business you will get a huge audience in your social media, community as well as you will get the opportunity to throw your business to most of the people quickly. Trust me, who has already established themselves as a brand they touch and make jump in their career as well as their business.

For example, I can start a blog and write hundreds of article. I share to my Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn. Nobody cares because they don’t know who I am and how much effective my article can be. But if I was a brand then after sharing any story from my website, instantly I can get thousands or million traffic instantly than others. It’s your plus point and if you can use it for your own business, it’s BOOM!

Getting opportunity to do good for society

You as a brand and an influencer you can easily throw any good messages to your society that can do something good for the people we live with in this world. That’s why UN and other organization hire celebrities and social influencer for their social programs. Because people love to hear from the people they love to listen from than any typical person.

More visibility meaning more opportunity

If you can successfully make yourself as a brand you can be one hundred percent sure that your visibility will go sky rocket. You need to use this visibility for your own benefit. There are lots of personal branding strategies that you can practice and implement. Getting visibility will always open new door in front of you whether you need it or want it. Convert your visibility into opportunity and start using that for good.

Examples of personal branding

In the age of technology driven world, the world is smaller than it seems on the maps. If you see closely in your society, in your social media, in your industry everywhere you will find lots of examples of personal branding. But I tried to make a list on my own who seems are doing personal branding and made huge success in their own industry. Again, my articles is not related to media celebrities. So here is the list I picked as an example –

  • Rebekah RadiceNeil Patel
    Founder of Neil Patel Digital, Kissmetrics, Crazy Egg
  • Mark Manson
    American Author
  • Seth Godin
    American Author
  • Lolly Daskal
    American Author
  • Graham Cluley
    Cybersecurity expert, host of “Smashing Security” podcast, public speaker.
  • Richard Branson
    Business magnate, Virgin Group
  • Jack Ma
    Founder of Alibaba
  • Rebekah Radice
    SocialMedia and Marketing Performance Strategist. Speaker | Author | Creator of PREP Performanceâ„¢ Method and Authority Matrix

These are just some example of personal branding. This list can’t display all the names here. Select the name from above list and search on Google to see their biography and how they made impact on their industry and they did it because of their personal branding strategy.

To see more people who already developed their personal branding, go to LinkedIn top influencers list. I can give more examples of personal branding and I think you already have some people name on your brain too that influence you sometime.

Let’s not make this article more longer by writing all the process about personal branding. I will write more articles on this topics later in another article that will include the topics on personal branding strategy and tips & tricks to get more visibility online. You can read about how to build personal branding strategy on social media.

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Shaharia is a professional software engineer with more than 10 years of experience in the relevant fields. Digital ad certified, cloud platform architect, Big data enthusiasts, tech early adopters.