Sure, you know what online branding can do for businesses. But do you know what value it holds for you and your career? In this Internet Age, your social media accounts have become more than just your unique spaces on the web. Everything that you post on social media is no longer just a fragment of your current mindset, but also a determining factor in your leadership capacity and who you are as a professional.
Personal branding is a career development tool that helps everyone – from the underdogs to the big dogs – manage their career and get noticed by potential employers. With the advent of social media, learning about who you are has become as easy for your potential employers as doing a Google search. Your potential employer’s impression of you depends largely on what you’re sending out through your Facebook updates, Tweets, or Instagram posts. The democratizing nature of these social sites makes it easy for you to post about everything, and they may lead you to believe that the more activities you have, the more market value you’ll have on your personal brand.
Remember that personal branding is a leadership requirement, not a self-promotional campaign. When you decide to create your own personal brand, you commit yourself to the long-term journey of transforming yourself into the person you want to be. The process of developing your personal brand extends beyond the use of social media; you need to manage your online reputation both online and in real life in order to be your own brand. This action can be a challenge, which is why you need to first determine your intentions before joining a social site.
If you chose to open an account to build your brand, you’ll need to identify the “heart and soul” of your brand. It’s not a mission statement, but a simple description of who you are and the impression you want to create. While the description can be broad, you can make it simple by describing your personality with emotional modifiers that truly capture the experience your co-workers would have with you, selecting your target audience, industry, and the right words to describe your work and define your function. Your simple description will become the basis for all of your efforts to build your brand online – and to live your life every day.