Socrates told us, “Know thyself,” in order to find meaning, contribute highly and engage authentically with the world around you.
Many people come to the decision that they need personal branding help for professional reasons. For instance, many of my clients have felt a need to create:
• A defined competitive advantage. How to define their value in a crowded marketplace;
• More money. Financial drivers often lead people to see if there’s something they could do to make themselves more marketable and attract more financially desirable situations;
• More visibility and support for their effort/cause/mission/agenda;
• A way to market themselves more intentionally in social media;
• Consistency with their values and beliefs as they market themselves in an industry; and
• An understanding of their ideal target audiences and how to approach them.
As we’ve talked about in other blogs, everyone has a set of functional needs (see above) as well as emotional needs. In my experience with leading professionals and executives through a personal branding journey, people often need to feel:
• Appreciated and recognized for who they truly are.
• Connected to others who are like them and who feel the same way.
• Validation that their goals/beliefs/values are marketable and can set them apart.
• Validation that they present themselves with more authenticity and still retain elements of power, control and respect.
• Empowered to create a “following” around their ideas/vision.
• They can create a system for being consistent and intentional in how they promote themselves.
The benefits of a personal branding process, strategy and plan are numerous. For instance, individuals feel a tremendous sense of clarity in knowing what makes them unique, who their target audience is, and what value they bring to engagements (that make them compelling and relevant). In my book, “Reputation 360: Creating power through personal branding,” I included more than 15 case studies of individuals and executives who found solutions to business issues, interpersonal communications challenges and career struggles by first looking inward.
Other benefits from personal branding include the intention and focus through which you can then promote yourself, engage with others, and become known for the skills, talents and values you offer to others – from employers to prospective employers to clients.
Everyone has a personal brand – it is your reputation and what others use to assign you value and relevance. A brand is an emotional connection you have with others, and it sets the expectation of an experience of working with you.
Your personal brand already exists in the minds of your colleagues, peers, clients, friends and other stakeholders. As people experience being with you, and through your behavior over time, you have earned a reputation. For some, your reputation is inconsistent with how you believe you are and how you want to be seen, and you might find yourself limited in personal and professional growth.
We hire people who not only have the necessary skills and qualifications but who make us feel a certain way. We know them to be professional and capable, but what causes us to “buy” – to hire them – is how we expect we will feel working with them. It has been said, “We act on logic… and we buy on emotion.”
Personal branding starts with you. Personal branding does not make you into something you’re not. It begins by understanding what you are passionate about, what you value and how you live an authentic life. The personal branding process starts with your values and your goals.
If personal branding is in your future, you can find many tools available online and in person. We’d love to help you get started!
As counsel and reputation management expert to international corporations, senior executives, CEOs and business leaders, Lida Citroën launched LIDA360, a reputation management firm, to devise corporate marketing strategies and personal branding processes that drive results. Her programs continuously and intuitively revolve — and evolve — around client business objectives while positioning companies and executives to outshine their competitors.
As an accomplished professional speaker on personal branding and reputation management, her programs, “Stand Out from the Crowd: Leveraging Your Personal Brand” and “Personal Branding & Reputation Management Online” generate rave reviews.
The author of the best-selling guide to reputation management, “Reputation 360: Creating power through personal branding,” (Palisades Publishing, 2011) Lida delivers speaking programs, consulting and coaching on:
– Reputation Management for Executives
– Reputation Management for Professionals
– Reputation Management for Non-Profits
– Personal Branding for Today’s Executives
– Personal Branding & Reputation Management with Social Media
For more information visit www.LIDA360.com or call 800.314.5060.