Personal Branding: Going From Invisible to Invincible

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We’ve all heard of the value of having a strong personal brand. However, many of us still hesitate to cite various reasons. ‘It’s too hard, it takes too long, too much effort, ‘I don’t know what to say’—all of these excuses are familiar to us, whether we say it to ourselves or have heard our friends and colleagues say it. Nevertheless, the fact remains that personal branding is one of the most effective ways to grow your influence online. So this week on our chat, we invited marketing strategist, Kendra Losee, to clarify some key questions about personal branding. Here’s a summary of our chat.

Guest: Kendra Losee
Topic: Personal branding: Going from invisible to invincible
Format: Eight questions directed at the guest. Everyone’s welcome to share.

Q1: Why should you create a personal brand?

Personal branding is important because it helps you make a big impact, even when you’re not actively engaging on social media. It’s a great way to differentiate yourself from others in the industry.

If you have a strong personal brand, you can use that as an asset. A personal brand is much bigger than the person itself—it can help you find and land new business and career opportunities.

So many people on social media are still unaware of the value of personal branding. This means that if you put in the effort to create your personal brand, you’ll have a good chance of standing out from the crowd.

As our guest summarized, a personal brand can humanize your business, help establish yourself as an expert, offer a medium for people to find and discover you, and even give you the opportunity to advertise your offering.

Q2: How does a personal brand help improve your business?

The more effort you put into growing your personal brand, the more authority you’ll gain as an expert in that topic. Then when you share your unique opinion about a topic, you’ll naturally gather an audience that’s interested in hearing your opinions.

As Masooma emphasized, a personal brand can help you grow your revenue by widening your reach, increasing awareness, and driving more business opportunities your way.

Q3: What are some things to consider when creating a personal brand?

Think long-term. When you’re thinking about building out your personal brand, consider which topics you have a personal interest in. This shouldn’t be too specific, like the iPhone 4s, for example. It has to be broader (such as Apple as a tech company) so that you can scale it and sustain it throughout the years. It’s also essential that you think about who your ideal audience is.

While you iron out the topics you’re most keen about, also consider what you’re willing to do and say—and most importantly, what you won’t do and say. Our values define our brand. Be conscious of what values you want to stand for and how you’ll go about it.

Q4: What makes for a successful personal brand?

First up, define your brand well. Know who you are—your values and what you want to stand for. Choose your topics, how you’ll convey your perspectives, and who your audience is.

Once you’ve covered the basics, ask yourself what value you (and your brand) bring to the table, which platforms work best for you, and how empathetic you can be in your conversations.

Lastly, find and focus on what makes you different from the others. Be your own unique self and you will automatically become relatable.

Madalyn emphasized the value of being uniquely yourself. Personal brands are all about who you are as a person—don’t be afraid to be yourself. Most importantly, don’t try to be someone else—that never ends well.

Q5: How do you grow your audience as a personal brand?

Show up consistently and in platforms your audience is in. Showcase your personal values and find ways to relate to your audience’s values. Join conversations that you personally care about. Be compassionate when engaging with others and discussing topics they care about. Every time you share content or engage in a conversation, bring something useful to the table. This is not an exhaustive list, but it’s a pretty good starting point for growing your audience as a personal brand.

Of course, always remember to have fun. If that means sharing a photo of your poodle, then by all means, go for it.

Q6: What are some ways to grow your personal brand when you’re just starting out?

First of all, acknowledge that it’s not an overnight exercise. Define your areas of interest and expertise, make your profile and bio accessible and easy to understand, listen to what others are discussing and read the room before connecting with people, share your own experiences and learnings, and prioritize meaningful relationships.

That’s a big list. You don’t have to do all of those at once. Instead, start small—talk about why you care about the topics you’ve chosen. It’s a good way to build a narrative around who you are as a person, and that’ll form the foundation of your personal brand.

Our guest also told us about using the SPARK framework to meaningfully connect on social media. Consider the Stories you can tell and the People you want to reach. Find ways to Attract and retain your audience, compile Resources you can share with them, and Keep-providing value to those who want to hear from you.

Q7: Who are your favorite personal brands that everyone should check out?

Our guest’s recommendations included Mark Schaefer, Jim Kwik, Nir Eyal, as well as seasoned #TwitterSmarter folks Mike Alton, Stephanie Liu, Jim Fuhs, and our own Madalyn Sklar.

Pavel gave a shot out to a few other popular names: Tom Ferry, Gary Vaynerchuk, Brianne Fleming, and Christine Gritmon.

Q8: Share some resources to learn more about building a personal brand online.

Kendra’s all-time favorite resource is Mark Schaefer’s book titled, KNOWN. She also shared this recent HBR article written by Harrison Monarth.

Before you dive into your personal branding education, however, our guest shared a caveat. What information you find depends a lot on what you’re looking for. For example, “what is a personal brand?” is wildly different from “how to create a personal brand”. Before you dive in, think about your personal values and your goals. Doing this will help you align your activities and learnings to your goals.

Well folks, that’s all from me this week. Thanks for reading through and for more great insights from our chat with Kendra have a look at this Twitter Moment that Joana put together for us. If you like this summary, you’ll love the real-time chat. Join us next Thursday at 1 pm ET for #TwitterSmarter. We also have an after-chat on Twitter Spaces at 5 pm ET. See you there!

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About me, Narmadhaa:

I write all the things—marketing stuff to pay the bills; haiku and short stories so I feel wholesome. A social media enthusiast, I hang out with the #TwitterSmarter chat crew, and am always happy to take on writing gigs.

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