How To Brand Yourself in 7 Steps
By Indeed Editorial Team
Updated August 26, 2021 | Published December 12, 2019
Updated August 26, 2021
Published December 12, 2019
Learning how to brand yourself is an important step in your career. It’s essential to find your niche, your unique voice and an effective way to present yourself in the marketplace. In this article, we explain the purpose and importance of finding your personal brand and offer seven steps to finding and successfully launching your brand.
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Watch this workshop with Joy Randolph to find out how to harness your personal brand during the job search by crafting a compelling career story and online presence.
What is branding?
Branding refers to the ways in which you establish a perceived image of an organization, product, service or person. For both personal and product branding, the main objective is differentiating the product; in this case, yourself from competitors in your market.
The overall process of personal branding includes defining your attributes and strengths as a brand, emphasizing your unique qualities when compared to similar brands on the market and finding ways of managing every aspect of your personal brand.
Related: What Is Personal Branding?
How to establish your personal brand
Your personal brand is defined by who you are as a professional and what makes you different from other people. Consider using these steps to successfully brand yourself:
1. Find what makes you unique
When starting to define your brand, you will need to identify your strengths, skills and talents. Think about what you do well and what you feel passionate about. Passion can motivate you to persevere during challenges. It’s also inspirational, as people admire passionate people. For example, if you are passionate about numbers and accuracy, you can use that to brand yourself as an excellent accountant.
2. Establish a clear voice
Be specific about your brand by establishing a unique voice for your product or service. Determine what qualities you possess that your competitors don’t. Knowing what you can do better or more effectively and highlighting those abilities is foundational to building a successful personal brand.
Part of the process of defining your voice is to research potential competitors and objectively compare their results to yours. For example, you may discover that you have a unique way of completing a typical work-related task from other professionals in your field.
Related: Personal Branding 101
3. Determine your niche audience
Identify your target audience. Once you have discovered who your target audience is and what you can do for them, it will be easier to create a branding strategy.
Start by analyzing your specific area of expertise. For example, if you are a real estate professional who specializes in residential rentals, focus on the audience looking to rent apartments, houses and condos.
4. Build a reputation
Once you have built the foundation of your brand by defining yourself, your objectives and your chosen platforms, you can start building an audience and a reputation. The purpose is to convince the people interested in your brand that your skills are valid and your claims are backed by strong expertise.
Identify the online platforms where you will find potential customers and then publicize your brand through social media posts. Your purpose is to make it easy for people to learn about and contact you. For example, if you find an online social media group related to your product or service, you could actively promote your skills or services to that group.
This step typically involves creating a website for your brand and publishing blog posts. Having a website will support your brand voice and make it easy for people to learn more about you and what makes your product or service so unique.
Building a reputation also includes being active in your professional community and establishing a reputation for being accurate and knowledgeable. For example, if your main area of expertise is economics, you can build an audience and a reputation by creating a blog in which you express your economics-related ideas and share them in relevant social media groups.
Search for as many relevant people and brands as possible and reach out to them to collaborate to gain access to their audience, reputation and credibility.
If, for example, you discover people in your social media groups who have similar qualities but a larger brand than you do, you can reach out to them and propose different collaborations. You will need to make a strong case for why working with you will also benefit them.
Read more: How To Craft a Value Proposition
6. Analyze your competition
Study your competition and identify opportunities for your own growth
Analyzing your competition depends on your area of expertise, but in most cases, you can do it through online research. If, for example, you are a marketing professional in the automotive industry, you can analyze your competition by studying major marketing campaigns conducted by other car manufacturers.
7. Get feedback
Ask friends, family and industry contacts for feedback on everything from your social media approach to the professional appearance of your website and blog, to the value of your product and service. Then, use this feedback to alter your marketing strategies and fine-tune your brand voice.
For example, if you post photos on social media of your new product and you get a lot of positive responses to your photos, you’ll know that you are reaching your target audience. If, however, you get a lot of questions from people who don’t understand your product, you’ll know you need to be more concise in your marketing.
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