One of the most important things you can do to totally change your life and create the life that you really want is to create what’s known as a personal brand. Everything about you should be intentional. YOU are a brand whether you own it or not. What message are you sending?
Branding is not just for business. It’s not just for big business like Coke, Pepsi, or Nike. Branding is not just for small business. Personal branding helps you control what you’re known for and how other people perceive you. Perception is reality even when it comes to what people think of you. When you are out of touch with who you are and what you represent, it makes you vulnerable and more prone to have your brand defined for you by others. If you’re sending out the wrong messages or mixed messages, it’s going to hinder your level of success. These three areas will help you identify, evaluate, and tighten up your personal brand for success.
Your name has meaning. When someone thinks of your name, they have some predisposed thoughts about you—who you are, what you do, and how you do it. There are thoughts attached to your name and if you’re going to be a success, you should be concerned with those thoughts that you are contributing to. I’m not one that believes in caring too much about what others think of you, because if you’re overly sensitive it can impact your confidence level. However, when it comes to creating a personal brand and creating the type of life you want, knowing what the perception is about you is important. Some of what people think of you is because of their own internal issues, but some of what they think is because of what you’re putting out there. You can’t control other people’s issues, but you can and must be intentional about what you’re putting out. What are people saying about you when you name comes up?
Whatever brand you desire to create, the most important thing you have to do for lasting success is to stay within your personality. Be authentic in who you’re presenting. Fakeness can only last so long. Whether it’s in business or your personal life. How long do you think you can keep the façade going? Eventually the real you comes out. So, instead of trying to pretend to be someone you’re not just be yourself from the get go. Faking takes up too much energy and that energy can be better spent working on the real you and getting real results. Whatever your personality, you can make it work for you. That part of you that you’ve been hiding, could be the very thing that’s sets you apart and increases your value in your business. Use your uniqueness to accentuate your value and come out of the box. It will give you a peace of mind, less stress, and freedom just to be.
How do you present yourself? This is similar to personality but presence is the image that you are projecting, or think you are projecting, and may or may not align with how other people see you. When focused on creating a brand, your image is what can seal the deal for you. The image that you’re portraying should align completely with your personality and in business with the type of personalities you want to attract as clients. For example, if your personality is creative, extroverted, energetic and quirky then you mostly likely aren’t attracted to black, white, and grayscale colors. If your ideal client has that personality, then you do not want those colors as part of your brand colors because they would be lifeless to your client. What tends to happen is that we have a perception of how we “should” do things based on what others are doing and so we conform. You may feel that to be more professional you should wear dark suits or clothing. Here’s the thing. If your personality doesn’t match, you look and seem awkward. And, your ideal clients will not be attracted to you because there’s a disconnect. Vibrant colors are just as professional as dark or monochrome colors. It depends on your brand and whom you want to attract.
Everything about your image should speak to who you want to be as a brand. If you’re in business, then that includes whom you want to attract as a client. If it’s your career, then it’s based on what career you want. If it’s a relationship, then your image should reflect who you want to attract. Image is everything.