You may have heard me say it before but if not, here it is, your personal brand is important! Very important.
We spend our lives deciding if ‘what you know’ or ‘who you know’ is more important when really what we should be focusing on is ‘who knows you’ and doubling down on what they know you for.
That doesn’t mean ‘what you know’ and ‘who you know’ doesn’t matter – it means that it doesn’t have to be one or either and it certainly doesn’t end there.
Let’s break a couple of myths….
- Building a personal brand makes me egotistic
No, it does not. What it means is you know what your niche is and what you want to be known for and you aren’t afraid to tell the world. You are positioning yourself in a market, your target market, as an expert. It is actually the opposite to not tell people what you are capable of and how you can help them.
- Personal brands are for famous people
Yes and no. There are some amazing celbs out there with awesome personal brands but for regular people like you and I, it isn’t about being famous famous. It is about being ‘famous’ selectively to our target audience/clients/suppliers etc…
- Personal Brands are a lot of hard work.
It shouldn’t be. Your personal brand should be true to you. Meaning it comes naturally. If it doesn’t then you are acting and quite frankly that is a skill in itself. Showing up is enough.
What can make it hard work though is spreading yourself too thinly. You don’t need to be on every platform, every day. You need to be where your audience is and stick to that. Add more platforms as you grow and can handle the workload. And always, always repurpose content.
So now you know what Personal Branding is not, what can you be doing to build yours during COVID-19?
Call Your Clients and Suppliers Now!
Call all your clients. Doesn’t matter if you have 1 or 101, make contact. Check in on them. Ask how they are holding up.
I know this might be time consuming and you are focused on how to stay afloat yourself right now but believe me when I say this will serve you well in the long run.
I’ve said it before – your personal brand is what people think and feel about you based on what you put out there in the world.
If at this trying time you disappear, you are scarpering or sending nothing but ‘buy from me, buy from me’ desperate messages then you aren’t going to be remembered favourably when this is all over.
If however you are the type to pick up the phone or at the very least send a personal email or text then you will be remembered positively once COVID-19 is over and done with and we start watching movies about it on Netflix.
And let me be clear, you are not calling clients to try and make sales but to genuinely offer support and check in on how they are feeling.
Collaboration over Competition
I started nearly every sentence in 2020 with this statement.
If anything, this crisis has made me even more sure that was the right move.
People are beginning to operate in fear. Feeling a bit unsure and dying for reassurance and guidance. Step up and offer that, anything that you can do to help now you should be.
Does the wider community know what your skill set is and how you could assist them now?
Is your competitor doing something that you feel you could add value to and in doing so you, you create a super service that will help others?
Can you afford to offer a couple of free hours here and there to help others out? If they make it out the other side guess who will be front of mind for them… you!
Get on LinkedIn
There is no better place online than LinkedIn to position yourself professionally in my opinion.
Connect with the right people – people you like, trust and value. If they don’t tick those 3 boxes, then you should not be connected. Remember people are judgemental and this is all about building your personal brand. You will be judged by association as much as you will be by your own actions.
Get a profile picture – this is your brands very own logo!
Share positive content that aligns with you and positions you as an expert in your field. This can be content you create yourself or carefully chosen content from third parties such as trusted news outlets, leaders in your industry or associations in your sector.
And follow amazing people that lift your spirits, offer services you need or can add value to your learnings.
If you need a hand with your LinkedIn, give me a shout!
These might not feel like active actions to building a personal brand but in actual fact, every single thing you do reflects you and builds and strengthens your personal brand.
You don’t need to take my word for it. Check out some of my favourite personal branding experts – Henry Kaminski (Brand Dr), Cher Jones, Mike Kim, Mary Henderson and Suz Chadwick.
So, at the end of COVID-19, who will know you? And what will they know you for?