No. Just embrace who you are!
“ Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself” -George Bernard Shaw
You know that buzzword you keep hearing — Personal Brand? No one’s got a shotgun to your head telling you to make one. But in the age of information, if you fail to manage your personal brand it can lead to misinformation about you. Defining yourself will ensure that the public sees the image that you want them to see.
Personal branding is a journey of discovery. While puffing up your chest and flashing that look of confidence (or faux confidence, whatever works) is a great start, there’s an ember of genuine value that you can fan to a flame.
This is an opportunity for you to explore that fire and see where it takes you. The following points will help you define and create an image that is genuinely __________ ← your name here.
Think Of Your Brand Mantra
You know what makes you feel alive.
Brand mantras are short and powerful. Explore what makes your brand unique along with what you represent. In order to create a brand mantra, you must first identify what sets your brand apart. Start by listing your KSPs (Key Selling Points — industry jargon for what something or someone brings to the table). There is no “ideal” mantra, but a powerful one would showcase these qualities:
- It’s short and simple.
- Communicates what is unique about your brand.
- Inspires others.
When creating a mantra, it’s good to list down everything you can offer and how that relates to your purpose and mission.
Here are some examples from brands you might have heard of:
1. Nike: Authentic Athletic Performance
Nike’s got a bit of a reputation for motivation. This mantra was created by Scott Bedbury, Nike’s global head of advertising in the 1980s. Everything the company does stems from its mission to inspire and motivate every athlete in the world. It does a fine job of amping up its employees too.
2. Disney: Fun Family Entertainment
Another mantra from the 80’s is from the land of magic itself. You might be wondering why the word magic didn’t make the mantra cut. Well, you and I both. But what they came up with does capture the essence of what the brand is and how people relate to it.
3. Ritz-Carlton: Impeccable Hospitality
Ah, the Ritz. If the name doesn’t bring a glimmer to your eye, maybe its mantra will. You just hear it and think “yeah. That’s what I want.” And that’s what you’ll get. That’s if they hold up their end of the bargain.
4. BMW: Ultimate Driving Machine
Not A driving machine. Not THE driving machine. They’re the Ultimate Driving Machine. No one can touch them. Sure, it’s audacious but hey — that’s what they’re promising and people love what they produce.
5. Harley Davidson: Personal Freedom
It’s just you and Harley against the wind. I’ve imagined riding one of these bikes and it’s the same vision every time. The great pacific highway. Top speeds. Huge beard. Freedom. An orange sunset would be great too.
See how a few words can capture the essence of something? Next —
Be As Authentic As You Can
Ha, he got caught.
People are attracted to the genuine. The key to personal branding is to make it personal. There are plenty of dry facts online that will not impress most people, which is why your brand needs a personality.
Quirks, traits, whatever your weird or cool is — that’s attractive.
When you‘re developing your persona, ask yourself “does this feel real?” if not. Keep looking. Keep trying. It’s a process of self-discovery.
I’ve heard many people say feel the need to fit the mold of what the world wants, instead of being who they are. I don’t blame them. When I was in high school, we were told universities could reject us for a distant beer can that wandered into an otherwise innocent Facebook photo. While this is an exaggeration, the persistent notion of judgment is what holds people back from exploring their digital personalities and developing their personal brands.
Remember — you’re in control of what people see and therefore also what they perceive. At least to a certain level. How you behave online is a skill called Digital Citizenship. Great news. It’s something that you can work