One of the strongest and most well-known consumer brands in the world is Starbucks. When you think about Starbucks or see their signature company logo, what is one of the first things that come to your mind? For most consumers it’s something positive whether you’re a coffee lover or not. It’s not just because Starbucks offers a variety of coffee and non-coffee products, but it’s because no matter which product you choose Starbuck’s chief offering is premium quality and that applies to every product. You should approach the idea of your personal brand with the same mindset. Your brand is what you are known for, it’s how the world experiences you, and it should be the most authentic reflection of yourself. Here are 5 steps you can take to (re)create a strong professional brand in 2018.
Step No. 1 – Research Yourself
It is a known fact that employers research potential employees online prior to extending an offer or setting up interviews. It is a worthwhile practice to do this research on yourself periodically. I recommend at least once a month. This will ensure that there is no information online that could derail your (re)branding campaign. Inaccurate information should be removed as quickly as possible.
Step No. 2 – Conduct a KSA Analysis
The second step you can take is to perform an analysis of your knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSA). This information will serve as a key component of your (re)branding efforts. Taking inventory of your capabilities will provide you insights on which parts of your education, work history, and accomplishments to feature during your personal marketing campaign. It will also help to identify any potential gaps your skills, allowing you to develop an informed road map to close the gap. Learn More: KSA Analysis
Step No. 3 – Update Your Resume
Once you understand what skills you need to be successful in your career you can then brand those skills in your resume. Keeping your resume up to date is a great way to communicate these skills to the world and potential employers. Here’s a free e-book to help: Career Hacks
Step No. 4 – Leverage Social Media
Social media has become a powerful tool used by companies and job seekers alike. It is almost impossible to build a strong professional image without harnessing the might of social media. The keyword on social media is consistency. Use the same name and profile pictures across multiple social media sites. This is great way to embed the memory of your profile in the mind of potential employers and business contacts. In addition to your profile picture, it is necessary to have a concise, professional statement or bio. Make sure it is accurate, targeted, and intriguing. Lastly, if possible try to position yourself as a knowledge expert by participating in specialized groups, posting to discussion forums and sharing articles and information with contacts.
Step No. 5 – Network, Network, Network
Many parents have used the phrase “you are who you hang around”. This is true when it comes to building a new image as well. It’s important to associate with people who share similar values and represent those things that are most important to you. Make sure you regularly attend events and conferences related to your field or interests. Events sponsored by non-profit organizations are great avenues to explore and grow your network, because they usually attract people from diverse professional and social backgrounds.
Your (re)branding effort should be a fun process that is ever maturing and evolving. It’s important to first understand who you are (Self-Discovery) then you can develop a plan to get where you want to be. Be clear on how you want to be perceived and what you want people to experience when they interact with your brand. Following these 5 simple steps is a great way to get started (re)creating a new brand in 2018.
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