Building Your Personal Brand

In this tough economy many people are becoming freelancers. According to a recent New York Times article, “More than 14.8 million people were self-employed last year, accounting for about 12 percent of the private, nonfarm work force.” The first thing one needs to do as a rockstar freelancer is to create a personal brand. A great source is the Rockable’s minibook Rockstar Personal Branding. There are so many blogs out there as well as many freelancers and entrepreneurs. A personal brand helps you stand out from the crowd. It puts an image to you, the business. The minibook breaks down personal branding to five points: positioning yourself, building reputation, crafting the elevator pitch, blogging, and perfecting the package.

Positioning Yourself
Position yourself for what, you might ask? What is your selling position, specifically your unique selling plan. What are you putting out there for people to buy? Is it clear? What do you do that no one else if offering or that you do better? Can that be highlighted above many different skills that you possess? Are you formally a real estate broker who is now in web design? Than you can market to the real estate industry claiming you are one of them and therefore know how to market to their business’ needs.

Building Reputation
To build a reputation you will need to meet people and get your brand out to the public. One can gain credibility by joining trade organizations, attending conferences, publish an article or teaching a class at their local community college. Doing this, while learning your trade, can help build your reputation even before you get your first client.

Crafting the Elevator Pitch
How can you say the most about your brand in the smallest amount of time? Four key areas to focus on: who you are, what make you unique, what do you do, and why should the listener care? Remember this is a sales pitch, that should not sound like a sales pitch. Keep it short and make it personal.

Blogging
Google, and other search engines, like to see a website with updated content. A blog is the best way to do this. Updating your blog often will most likely get your name to #1 in Google search. A blog is a way for your brand to have a conversation with potential clients. You can write about the latest trends in your profession, while people can comment and interact with the brand. The longer you write and become established the more of an authority you will become.

Perfecting the Package
The package consists of all the things that represent your brand like business cards, logo, photos, bio, and design elements. They all need to have a cohesive aspects to create the whole package. Is your brand fun and vibrant or cutting edge and trendy? Your package will communicate this to potential clients and will help create a feeling about your brand.

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    3 thoughts on “Building Your Personal Brand

    1. Chris Perry

      Great post, Dennis!

      When “crafting your elevator pitch,” choose a one-word personal brand that really represents you and then follow it up with your pitch of 2 to 4 reasons why your audience, employer, customer etc. would choose you over others. They may not recall verbatum what you say or write, but they will more likely remember your one-word brand and will remember how the rest of the pitch made them feel. This can really help you make the “sale” no matter what you are selling.

      Also, when “perfecting the package,” Make sure that your brand and messages are consistent across all channels so that you come across professionally memorable.

    2. Glenda

      I agree that this topic of “personal branding” is becoming increasingly important in today’s economy. Those interested in building their personal brand must take advantage of all the great opportunities they have to build a positive reputation through the internet.

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