So..as I hinted in my last post I want to talk about branding…personal branding that is. For the past couple years personal branding has become increasingly important for me and to me. As a young professional , how you represent yourself in person , online , at work and in social situations has become increasingly important given the fast paced and interconnected environment we now exist in.
In a nutshell “Your personal brand is what separates you from everyone else in the world“.This is the way you want yourself to be perceived by others and also how you want to live your professional and personal life. It is a collection of skills , competencies and experiences that speak to who are personally and professionally.
It has become increasingly difficult to separate personal and professional life..we talk about work/life balance among other things but more often than not our lives will overlap especially when it relates to branding. For me one of the biggest compliments someone can pay me is “this article/item/person etc. reminded me of you” or “this looks like something you would be interested in.” It’s even better when the person is spot on. It shows me that the way I see myself or represent myself is the way other people see me.
So back to the branding…for me branding encompasses a wide cross-section of things : image , career , personality , interests and I try my best to align those to my overall vision. There is a quote I used to cling to when I was younger ” Life is not about find yourself..It is about creating yourself’. While I don’t necessarily interpret it the same way now as I did then..it’s a good quote to guide the creation of a personal brand.
Some of the key components of a personal brand are brand strategy , brand personality and visual identity. The one I’ll be touching on for this post is brand personality . Most brand have a vision that guides their operation and in the same way I have a statement that guides me. This statement is highlighted in my blog header : “The Elegant Eccentric – Strange ,Stylish , Intellectual.” I therefore try to embody these characteristics in all aspects of my life. I am still defining my career and my future but I’ve allowed this statement to guide the courses I’ve undertaken , the jobs I’ve done and the things I spend my time doing. I believe every experience teaches new lessons and adds to my wealth of knowledge. At times it may seem that my interests are all over the place but there is a method to my madness. I am quite conscious of what I say , how I say it and how much I share with the world. I try to embody my brand personality in all ways ; the way I dress , how I style my hair , the places I visit , the classes I take and the things I discuss. There are some things that I am not inclined to do simply because they just don’t fit into my brand. Personal branding places a lot of emphasis on authenticity so if you say you’re about it you gotta be about it!
Check out this cool infographic from The Branding Muse that highlights some key branding terms :
Next up I will try to touch on strategy and visual identity and also strategies to build your personal brand.
If you had to define yourself in three words , what would they be? Looking forward to your responses!
Love and light,