A lot of people ask me, “What is personal branding? Is it the same as professional resume writing?”
It’s a very valid question. The concept of personal branding isn’t new, however the frequency with which it’s being thrown around has exploded in recent 12 months.
This has led to many misconceptions, the most unfortunate of which is, perhaps, the confusion of the concept with personal image management.
Sure, your outward appearance can be a part of your personal brand. However, that is the most surface layer of your brand and one which must be dealt with after the more concrete elements have been established.
What Is Personal Branding?
I’m currently reading a very inspiring book – Start Something That Matters.
It’s a story of a man who started Toms Shoes using a revolutionary business model and succeeded despite industry veterans telling him he never would.
I’m a little shocked at how simply, yet effectively the author captures the basic idea of personal branding, without ever using those words. He says:
If someone is interested in hiring you, or consulting with you, or joining your business, or even dating you, he or she will go online and Google you. Your Facebook page or your Tumblr or your Flickr feed will appear, and if they’re not compelling, if they don’t offer opportunities for others to feel a connection to your story, it will be very hard to stand out.”
It’s Quite Simple.
Your personal brand is the story of how you want to contribute to the world, broadcast through whatever means you see fit (however, in today’s age, online means are the most powerful method by the virtue of being most scalable).
So, what’s your story?