- What Is A Brand Persona And Why Do I Need One Thing
- What Is A Brand Persona And Why Do I Need One Piece
In this article, we'll go through the entire process of creating a persona. Step-by-step, we’ll be adding new sections until we reach our final destination – a production-ready, insightful persona. You’ll be able to use it as a reference for making personas of your own in the future!
In our previous articles, we’ve discussed personas a lot. So if you’re not sure what these personas are, why you want to use them, and what pitfalls you should avoid when creating them, definitely check these articles.
One of the advocates for this perspective is Lene Nielsen. One of the main difficulties of the persona method is getting participants to use it (Browne, 2011). In a short while, we’ll let you in on Lene Nielsen’s model, which sets out to cover this problem through a 10‑step process of creating an engaging persona.
We’ll be using our UXPressia Personas Online tool for creating our persona. If you’ve never tried it before, this is a great opportunity for you to learn something new in an easy and fun way. Go ahead, get a free account, and learn how to create personas of your own while reading this guide!
PersonalBrand.com is the leading authority on the topic of personal branding and the creation of a personal brand. There are many definitions of “personal branding” out there on the internet, but many of them are either out-dated, or aspects of the definition completely conflict with the essence of a personal brand. Brand identity is built by assigning human characteristics and traits to your brand. According to Sprout Social, most users buy from brands that are honest, helpful, and friendly. These characteristics can be expressed through branding elements like brand name, logo design, colors, fonts, tone of voice, etc. Marketing Personas are the foundation on which you can build your marketing function. Without them, it’s almost impossible to know how to message your product to talk to customers’ pain points and needs, or how to reach them to build awareness and drive them to your website. A marketing persona is a composite sketch of a key segment of your audience.Ardath Albee. Let’s break that down a little bit: Composite sketch – A marketing persona is not supposed to detail one specific person and should never be based off one specific individual. Instead, it is a composite sketch that should be reflective of majority of.
Collecting information about your target audience is the first thing you must take care of when creating a persona. Otherwise, what exactly will you type in those sections?
There are many sources of user data and here are a few to get you started:
- Using whatever info that you already got at hand. You might have some ideas about your customers. Whether you have done some research in the past, or you just know something for sure.
- Making assumptions. If you’ve been working on a product for a while, you may have enough knowledge to make quite accurate assumptions about your users.
- Web analytics. This one is a goldmine of user data. Take the best of it.
- Conducting interviews with users. Nothing beats talking to a real person. Just make sure you use this technique along with other sources.
Read this article to learn how to gather user data.
Segment Your Audience
It is important to keep in mind that a persona is a collective image of a segment of your target audience (TA). It cannot be the face of the entire TA. Nor can it be just one person. You need somewhat of a golden middle.
So how many personas do you need for your project? The answer is here.
For our guide, we’ll take one hypothetical persona and this persona will be UXPressia potential user.
Set Demographic Info
Once you’ve done with collecting data and segmentation, it is finally time to start creating a persona. It is reasonable to start with the most basic info – demographics.
Authentic demographic data is critical to developing true empathy. Lucky us, UXPressia lets you generate names and photos for personas so you don't have to rack your brain for a unique name or photo.
Inside this section, you should include the most basic things like name, photo, age, marital status, job, income, residence, and so on. You may have noticed a green stripe on the name tile that says 'Idealist'. In UXPressia we have this section to describe the type of personality and it's a great way to know your personas.
Describe Persona Background
Describing the background is our next stop. Here, the more is better is the rule of thumb. Write down everything you know about your personas background.
Remember that any tiny detail may lead you to a wonderful insight. On the other hand, avoid unnecessary information that may cause cluttering and confusion.
Define Persona Goals
Defining persona goals is extremely important because it allows you to see how your goals align with the goals of your customers. Not to mention that if you can meet customers’ needs better.
We’ll say that John is looking for a tool that allows him to present his ideas to his clients and management easy and without hours wasted on drawing everything from the ground up.
Motivations & Pain points
Finding what motivates and frustrates your customers is something you must include in personas. Once done, it will illuminate what you can do to win their hearts and loyalty.
In John's case, his pain points may be that he doesn’t want to spend too much time learning the ropes of a tool. He also wants a balanced price/value ratio.
Speaking of his motivations, John is looking for some automation of his routine operations. Also, he’d love if he could store his works in one place so he can access them from any computer.
Add Other Ingredients
At this point, we are pretty much done with creating a persona. But there's still a lot of room for improvement. In UXPressia Personas Online Tool you can add loads of other sections to describe your persona in the most detailed way possible. Add skills, brands and influences, social networks and tech that your persona uses.
There's so much fun your team can have when creating a persona. And the benefits are endless. Start creating your own persona with UXPressia. For free.
By the way, you can use a PDF version of our Persona cheat cards that contain a list of tips and insight-generating questions for you to learn how to create a user persona. Download them free now and use them for creating your top-notch customer personas!
See full list on worldofwargraphs.com. And for slide lovers we got a summary of this post on slideshare:
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What Is Personal Branding:
When we talk about 'personal branding' we are referring to establishing and promoting what you stand for. Yourpersonal brand is the unique combination of skills and experiences that make you you. Effective personal brandingwill differentiate you from other professionals in your field.
A Brand Can Be Anything
We’re used to thinking about brands in relationship to companies and products - think McDonald’s or Apple. Butnowadays, anything can be a brand. Even as an individual, you have a personal brand.
So what is your personal brand? Whether you’re known for your snaps or you’re still using a typewriter, you havea brand that exists both on and offline.
Luckily, there are a lot of great tools and resources out there to help you with the personal branding process.Use them to leave the right impression on people who look you up online.
The idea of personal branding makes some people uncomfortable. But, if you don’t take control of your personalbrand online, then you are missing out on opportunities and letting others control your narrative.
At BrandYourself, we believe that personal branding should be accessible to everyone. That’s why we createdthis guide - to help you through the process of building your personal brand online.
While the specific circumstances and goals vary by individual, the overall concepts and process are still berelevant to everyone.
Why Personal Branding Matters
When it comes to building a personal brand, some people dismiss the process as being too time consuming, or notthat important.
It’s true - you will have to devote time and energy into self branding properly. But the idea that building apersonal brand is not important is just false, and here’s why:
People Are Googling You At Every Stage Of Your Career
Regardless of your age or professional stage, someone is screening you online. What they find can have majorimplications for your professional (and personal) well-being.
Just consider the numbers. According to CareerBuilder:
'More than half of employers won't hire potential candidates without some sort of online presence today.'
Don’t lose out on an interview over something you can control - like your personal brand.
And if you’re not looking to get hired and think this doesn’t apply to you, think again. Especially if youown your own business or work as a freelancer:
'Over half of consumers have chosen to do business with a freelancer or company because of a strong, positive online presence.'
If you aren’t properly managing your online reputation, then you are actively losing out on business.
The average person now switches jobs every 2-3 years and 40% of the workforce will freelance by 2020. Thismeans that a strong personal brand is more important than ever before. In fact, the more successful you wantto be, the more important personal branding becomes.
According to a recent study from Weber Shandwick:
- Global executives attribute 45% of their company’s reputation to the reputation of their CEO. That’snearly half!
- Additionally, a CEO’s reputation plays an important role in attracting employees to a company (77%)as well as motivating them to stay (70%).
How a CEO interacts online is directly tied to the success and appeal of a company in a major way.
Personal Branding Can Help You Take The Next Step
Numbers aside, the most important reason to focus on personal branding is to help yourself. Think ofthis as building an additional channel for growing your own successes.
Personal branding is a painless step in working towards your goals. Regardless of your industry orprofessional status, your personal brand has the power to make or break all kinds of opportunitiesfor advancement.
When building your brand starts to feel like a job, remember that it is an essential part ofcultivating your career. And keep in mind that the greatest investment of resources, time and effortwill likely come up front.
Building and optimizing new profiles, generating content about you and your work, identifying yourgoals, building a brand strategy - this can feel overwhelming. But once you’ve established a strongfoundation, you’ll have a roadmap to follow, which makes the whole process much more manageable.
Distinguish yourself from your competitors and take control of your personal brand with thefollowing approach.
The Most Effective Process For Building A Personal Brand
We have established that personal branding is the process of presenting yourself as a marketablebrand. As you start to go through the stages of creating a personal brand, it’s easy to getoverwhelmed. But before you throw your laptop on the ground, take a deep breath.
Think of building your brand and personal branding as an ongoing process that can be broken downinto the digestible phases. You don’t have to go from an inactive Facebook user to a top influenceron Snapchat. This isn’t an overnight process, and the objectives and specifics look different foreveryone.
Below we’ve gathered the most important tips on how to build a personal brand with long-termsuccess in mind. This entire personal branding process can be broken down into 3 pillars:
- Pillar 1: Building a basic brand
- Pillar 2: Building credibility & an audience
- Pillar 3: Targeting Opportunities
Pillar 1: Building a Basic Brand: Looking the part
Build an online presence that reinforces your qualifications. When someone looks you up online,they need to see a strong presence with fresh content in your area of expertise. In order tolook the part, you will need to:
- Audit your search results
- Clean up any content that doesn’t fit your desired image
- Define yourself and your personal brand
- Build an online presence that reflects your brand and expertise
- Follow a personal branding strategy and stick to timelines
Audit Your Search Results
Before you start building a personal brand, you first need to know where you stand in searchresults. Google yourself so you know what others see when they look you up. Is an article froma high school play you were in 12 years ago your first result followed by your aunt’s travelblog from 2002? While these aren’t terrible results, they aren’t relevant, and could be hurtingyou.
Don’t worry about what you find. While some results may cause a knee-jerk reaction, keep looking.You have to know everything that you’re dealing with before you can come up with an effectivepersonal branding strategy. Identify what search results or online content attached to you candamage your reputation.
If you’re worried about how long this will take, sign up for our DIY tool. Our software willinstantly scan your search results for potentially damaging information.
Clean Up Risky Search Results & Social Media Posts
Once you know what kinds of search results are closely attached to your name, you can takesteps to remove them. Start with the easy wins. That means posts, images, videos, comments,etc. that you can simply unpublish or delete. Take some time going through your social mediaprofiles and website(s).
Get rid of anything that doesn’t fit with your vision for your personal brand. Thatlivejournal entry about how AFI changed your life was relevant in highschool, sure. But itmay be time to unpublish your old posts when trying to make partner at a top commercialarbitration firm.
Clean up can at times be tough, even if you’re not particularly active on social media.That’s because there’s always the chance that a post, comment or picture from years agocould come back and sabotage your personal branding strategy (even if you didn’t write orpost it).
With this in mind, we created a new feature on our DIY tool to help you find damaging searchresults and 'red flag' content on your social media profiles.
After tons of research, we found the following types of posts/pictures/comments, etc. to bethe most damaging:
- Unprofessional Behavior
- Unprofessional Communication Style
- Drinking or Drug Use
- Criminal Behavior
- Polarizing Views - particularly when related to politics, religion, race and gender.
- Sexually Explicit Content
- Violence or Bullying
- Bigoted Behavior
And we even developed a new feature in our DIY tool to instantly identify red flag content, which can ruin a personal brand.
Define Yourself And Your Personal Brand
After you clean up existing web properties, you can really start to think about the personalbrand that you are trying to build. Create your own personal brand online by identifying theunique elements that make you you.
What is your personal brand? What do you want to achieve by putting effort into how you lookonline?
When figuring out how to start your own brand online, ask yourself questions like:
- Who are you?
- What makes you unique?
- What is your vision for your personal brand?
- What is your goal with personal branding?
- What are your professional goals?
- Who is your audience? Who can you help?
- How can you help them? What makes you different?
- What’s your X Factor? What makes you reliable? Trustworthy?
- How do you prove that? What’s the evidence?
In addition to these kinds of questions, start thinking about your accomplishments and gatherany supporting materials that can reinforce them. What are your short and long-term goals foryour personal branding strategy?
Before you start building your personal brand, think about (and find examples of) theinformation that you will want to share about your own successes.
Showcasing Your Skills And Accomplishments
You’ve just finished thinking about your goals and what differentiates you from others. Nowit’s time to hone in on showcasing your assets.
You can do this by:
- Writing out the accomplishments that make you proud
- Listing moments when others recognized you and your work publicly
- Thinking of times other people acknowledged your work privately
Whether you’re building a personal brand while: applying to schools, job-searching or justtrying to increase your network and earning potential, take some time to answer the questionsabove for yourself.
What Is A Brand Persona And Why Do I Need One Thing
Think holistically about what you are projecting and the impression that you want to leavewith anyone who searches for you online.
Now you can come up with a succinct description of your personal brand and bio, as well aslonger versions. You will use these variations of your biography and personal brand statementfor your social media profiles. This is how to make your own brand cohesive, but still haveunique content available on different platforms. This is appealing to users and search enginesalike.
Here’s a great example of the start of a personal brand statement:
Value: I help fast growing startups in NYC find flexible leases/office spacesthat fit their culture and budget. I help them throughout their entire journey, from CoWorkingto expansion. Nobody knows more about startups and how real estate fits into their strategiesbetter
X Factor: I love NYC, am a die-hard Yankees fan, NYC Marathon veteran, and hostquarterly dinners for new NYC Founders
- Here are 3 testimonials
- White paper on getting your first office
- Monthly blog posts about startups and real estate in NYC
It’s not enough to just write a blog posts every month, successful personal brandingmeans that the right people will see what you’re doing.
You want people to find results that are positive and relevant to you when they searchyour name online.
Spend time reflecting on who you are and what you want to highlight through your personalbrand.
Building An Online Presence That Reflects You And Your Expertise
Just to recap, you should have the following written out somewhere:
- A clear outline of your personal brand
- Short and long-term personal branding goals
- Your unique qualities, talents, areas of expertise
- Your accomplishments
Once you feel confident in that, it’s time to start building an online presence thatpeople find easily and leaves a great impression.
This involves following a 3-step process of building a strong foundation of sites andprofiles, optimizing them for search engines, and then maintaining content over time.
A Strong Foundation Of Sites And Profiles
In order to have a strong online presence, you need to build the sites and profilesthat you want people to find. This involves having a strong combination of personalwebsites and professional profiles. What does a strong foundation look like?
- 1 Personal Website
- 10-12 Professional profiles
You need to build these because each page of search results typically shows at leastten results. By taking control of at least 10-12 properties, you give yourself thechance to curate those key search results on the first page of Google. And what is apersonal brand without visibility?
When choosing which profiles to build out for your personal branding foundation, wesuggest that you select at least 10-12 from the following list:
- Personal Website
- Instagram (while this is not as strong for Google search, it is an excellent networking tool and a place to showcase your personality)
- 2-4 additional properties relevant to your industry
To learn more, visit our post on how these 20 key properties can improve your personalbranding effectiveness and earn you more money.
Optimize Your Online Presence For Search Engines
Optimize the existing sites and social media profiles that you control for search enginesand for people looking you up online.
To optimize these properties for search engines:
- Use your full name on all profiles and domains (be consistent with the name you go by)
- Write in the third person when you can
- Fully fill out all profiles
- Include your location when possible
- Include relevant keywords in meta-data
- Take advantage of h1 tags
To learn more about how to optimize your existing social media profiles and personalwebsite, check out BrandYourself’s blog andBrandYourself University.These resources provide tons of personal branding information about how to optimize profiles forsearch engines and the people googling you!
To find out which properties are right for you and how to regularly optimize them,sign up for our free DIY tooland we’ll answer these questions step by step.
If you have an amazing personal brand, but no one sees it, it’s not helping you. That’s where strategycomes in.
Personal Branding Strategy And Timelines
When it comes to getting started with your own personal branding project, it’s easy to get a lot done ina short amount of time.
With a little bit of focus and the help of free resources at your disposal like our DIY tool, take controlof how you look online. Our tool alone walks you through the following phases of personal brand creation:
- Clean up
- Content Creation
Depending on the current search results for your name, some of the sites and profiles that you build mighteven start to rank pretty quickly.
However, in most cases, it takes time for Google and other search engines to index these profiles.
Typically, indexing takes 2 to 6 weeks, but even then, that doesn’t mean that your new Zillow accountwill automatically shoot to #1 when someone looks up your name.
Search engine optimization and personal branding are part of an ongoing strategy that depends on yourconsistent updates and regular engagement across platforms.
You will see incremental changes over time. While that can be frustrating at first, this is very commonwhen you use proper personal branding and SEO strategies. At BrandYourself we follow best practices andwork towards the long-term health of your online presence.
Pillar 2.1: Building Credibility
Use your personal brand to start getting credible placements in relevant third party publications andchannels to get your content syndicated. In addition to ongoing content creation that you publish on sitesand profiles that you control, it’s critical to show others (and search engines) that you are relevant andknowledgeable. Publishing on well-respected, and high quality platforms helps establish this kind of credibility.
Writing strategic content in the right places
As you get used to creating content (blog posts, images, infographics, videos, audio clips or apodcast, presentations, status updates, etc.), start to publish it in places where interested partiesin your field will see it.
Whether that means publishing on LinkedIn, Medium, or a super niche site devoted to aparticular aspect of your field, do it!
By finding your audience, you have the opportunity to create and share something directlywith the people who will get the most out of it.
And don’t be afraid to reach out to other well-regarded thought leaders in your industryto see if your work can appear on their sites and profiles as well.
How to build your personal brand through third party placement
As you start your personal branding campaign, try a combination of pitching to third partiesand getting your content syndicated.
When it comes to guest blogging - or creating new content for another platform, considerthe following points:
- Understand the audience and content typically found on that platform
- Pick out the top performing content
- Replicate aspects of what made that perform so well
Talk to the editor, and perform your own research so that you are setting yourself upfor a lot of engagement from this article. Hopefully you’re on the same page with theowner of the blog, but take this into your own hands so that your experience as a guestblogger can be held up as a shining example to others, and acts as a return ticket toguest post for this person in the future.
Having your content appear elsewhere through third party publishing exposes your personalbrand to another audience, and offers a new layer of credibility.
Syndication (ie someone re-publishing your work) serves a similar function. The wholepoint of this is brand visibility and credibility.
Data is your friend
Keep track of the engagement that your content receives on different platforms. See ifyou can recognize any patterns in the type of content that tends to do well on someplatforms and not so well on others.
Consider what day of the week and what time of day you post content. Use the tools atyour disposal to see if you can recreate those successful posts and avoid those thatpeople don’t want to engage with.
In addition to using different tools to help you analyze the performance of the articles,updates, tweets, comments, videos, photos, etc that you’re posting, consider using socialmedia management tools to make life easier when it comes to sharing content consistently.While organic posting is important, don’t be afraid to make your life easier using toolslike Hootsuite or TweetDeck.
Pillar 2.2: Effective Personal Branding By Strategically Building An Audience
Start building a relevant audience of 'opportunity gatekeepers' on key social media platforms and publications.
Determine the gatekeepers of your opportunities
First identify what your goals are:
- Who is your target audience?
- Where are the best places to connect with these people?
- What kinds of content interests them?
Once you identify this, you can then figure out who you need to get in touch with in order toget in front of that audience and accelerate your personal branding campaign.
Make your own brand stand out by getting endorsements or even just mentions from respected leadersin your industry. Who really has the power when it comes to exposure and endorsement of your brand?
Look to people in your industry who are highly successful and visible on social media. But also lookfor the best platforms to connect with your audience. Get creative when it comes to asking influencersin your field for help.
Start with who you know
Not everyone that you know will fit into the bucket of 'strategic audience members' for yourpersonal branding efforts. However, there’s a good chance that you already know a lot ofpeople who are interested in your area of expertise that want to help you and see you succeed.
When you’re first starting out, make sure to connect with these kinds of folks online sinceyou’ve already developed a relationship with them in real life.
Keep track of these key players because you may have special content, information oropportunities for them as you build out your personal brand. These are the people who canshare your brand with other interested people that they know. This is an important facet ofaudience building.
Connect with gatekeepers & influencers via social media & strategic publications
Find inspirational influencers and mentors who are in line with what you’re trying to accomplish.
Connect with and follow them using the personal branding tools at your disposal. An easy placeto start is by looking at the people recommended to you or 'also searched' (depending on theplatform), when you look at a profile of a thought leader you admire.
You can also do a quick Google search for the top influencers within a given industry. Thereare plenty of lists online outlining the 'top people to watch' or 'top people to follow'. Do aquick search of 'Top [industry] influencers on Twitter/LinkedIn/etc' and go from there.
Start off by focusing on people in your industry, but don’t be afraid to learn more about peoplefrom other disciplines who embody something about your personal brand.
Whether you end up speaking directly with these influencers or not, you can learn a lot bywatching how they (or their team) execute their own branding strategies.
In addition to connecting with the people who are succeeding at goals similar to your own,make sure that you also connect with relevant publications, forums and news sources specificto your industry.
Pay attention to the tone and type of content that is published there, and especially thoseitems that tend to have great engagement metrics.
Figure that out so that when you pitch a piece there, an editor will take an interest.
Pillar 3: Nurturing your audience for personal branding opportunities
Make unique, high-quality content to stay top of mind with your audience and to winmore professional opportunities. You never know exactly how or when a piece of contentthat you publish will resonate with a potential business partner, client or employee -so keep at it.
What Is A Brand Persona And Why Do I Need One Piece
By branding yourself as an active thought leader in your industry, you open the doorto tons of possibilities. This includes (but isn’t limited to):
- Speaking gigs
- Blog exchanges
If you opt out of consistently developing your personal brand and engaging online,you are choosing to limit potential growth in your career. It’s true that none ofthese opportunities presented by your audience will last if you don’t have the talentand drive to support the person you illustrate through your personal brand.
But, if you have the skills, why not open as many doors as possible for yourself?And that starts with personal branding, actively connecting, and building youraudience.
How To Cultivate Your Own Brand With Advanced Audience Building Techniques
When it comes to developing your personal brand, visibility is a necessity. In additionto the initial steps suggested in Pillar 3, make a consistent ongoing plan to ensure'personal branding recognition'. Again, steps you can take to increase your visibilityonline by strategically working with your audience include:
- Ongoing engagement
- Ongoing content creation
- Link building
- Advanced keyword strategy
This process blends best practices and proven strategy when creating a personal brandthat showcases your strengths and increases your earning potential.
This is a pretty broad topic, but it refers to contacting people, organizations,news sources, etc that you think would be interested in you or your work. Outreachcan range from tweeting at someone, to sending a message on LinkedIn, to cold calling,emailing, pitching and more. Your goal in outreach is to create 'brand awareness'in others.
While the term 'networking' usually elicits groans and eyerolls, it doesn’t have to.
When done well, networking is about making a sincere connection with another personthat can then develop into a mutually beneficial relationship. It’s as simple asthat. Personal branding tactics don’t always have to scale to be powerful.
You already have a network, so when it comes to growing your audience and creatingpersonal brand awareness - think about people that you’d like to reconnect with aswell as new people to bring into your orbit.
Really listen to what they’re up to, and check in with them regularly. Avoid usingpeople when networking. Instead focus on finding good hard-working people, that yourespect who may have some overlap in your industry or desired profession. While'networking' meetups and conferences exist, it doesn’t have to be so formal if that’s not your style.
Just find events in real life or online relevant to your industry and talk to people.Some events could include:
- Talks from a leader in your field
- Charity events run by colleagues
- Gallery openings featuring subject matter relevant to your industry
- Online forums
- Interest groups on social media
Remember, networking doesn’t have to happen in formal settings. It can start in reallife or online, but engaging on social media is the easiest way to nurture thoserelationships actively and passively. These efforts will always help you when it comesto personal branding.
Your brand should nurture your network and vice versa.
Publishing high quality content isn’t enough. In order to keep your existing audienceinterested and attract more people to your brand, you have to regularly engage onthese platforms.
Respond as best as you can to the comments, questions and content directed at youfrom your audience.
If you don’t acknowledge the different ways that people are choosing to interactwith you online, then your brand may come off as out of touch, and inaccessible.
While you don’t have to craft long responses to every single person who commentson your Facebook page, respond when you can. And if you notice general trends inquestions and posts, acknowledge that and respond publicly.
In addition to engaging directly with your growing audience, publicly engage withpeople and news sources that are prominent in your industry. From commenting onarticles to retweeting people you admire, it’s important to demonstrate that youare active in the conversation that’s happening in your industry.
Ongoing content creation
When it comes to developing a personal brand, regularly updating your profiles andwebsite(s) with fresh content is a must. Consistent content creation positivelyimpacts three channels of your overall personal branding strategy:
- Search engine optimization
- Personal brand development
- Audience engagement and growth
Search Engine Optimization
From an SEO perspective, high-quality content that people engage with showssearch engines that your property (and that particular video, blog post, photo,etc.) is valuable. Over time, this translates to an increase in authority,which mimics the authority you are aiming to grow with personal branding.
Sites that search engines view as 'high authority' outrank their competition …that means that when people look you up online, they’re more likely to click onthat link, as opposed to those ranking below it. When people find this profileor piece of content, not only are they exposed to engaging information, but theysee your positive personal brand and may increase your audience numbers.
In short: Ongoing content creation + optimizing your propertiesfor search engines = higher authority = best chance at ranking high in SERPs =Better chance of people finding you = successful personal branding
Personal Branding Development
After you’ve created and optimized a strong foundation of profiles and websites,you still have to keep them fresh by updating them with new content to keep yourpersonal branding campaign heading in the right direction.
- Demonstrate that your personal brand is part of your industry’s current conversation
- Present your brand voice as relevant
- Reinforce your personal brand values through examples
Audience engagement and growth
Another critical reason for ongoing content creation is, it nurtures yourexisting audience and encourages new audience acquisition.
Nurture existing audience
- Content creation with personal branding in mind reinforces the aspects of your brand that audience members enjoy with each post
- Provide value to those who are already on your team
- Encourage existing audience to engage more frequently with your properties
- Increase the likelihood that your audience will follow your calls to action, which is the main purpose of personal branding at the end of the day
- Sharing new content regularly gives you the chance to see what your audience responds to and improve their experience with your brand accordingly
Expand your audience
- New content is a must when pitching to news publications, blogs and magazines - getting placed exposes you to an entirely new audience
- Increase your chances of being featured then discovered by a new audience on social media
- Tailor new content to target emerging demographics that should know about your personal brand, but don’t yet
- New content increases the likelihood that your current audience will share something with potential new audience members
By growing your audience with personal branding, you increase the opportunitiesfor link building.
Link building is a search engine optimization tactic where you try to earnlinks to your website or social media profile from a another site. The valueof these links increases based on the authority of the site linking to you.
In other words, a link to your website from the New York Times is much morevaluable than a link to your site from a spammy website that doesn’t rank well.
There are two main benefits of effective link building. The first is that youwill earn referral traffic from the site that links to you, bringing yourpersonal brand more exposure. The second is that new links to your site giveit a greater chance of ranking highly for your target keywords.
This can be links to your home page so you can rank for your own name, orlinks to a specific page on your site so that it might rank for its own setof keywords (more on this in #6).
As you start to connect with your new community that you’ve built throughpersonal branding, the opportunity for link building will undoubtedly presentitself.
Simply by expanding your audience and developing your personal brand, youincrease the potential for link building. As you start to collaborate withothers (many of whom may come to you or you’ll find through your network andaudience), you start the process of link building if they agree to link toyour site from theirs. There are many advanced link building tactics you canuse in your personal branding strategy, but for now stick with the basics.
In addition to SEO value, the process of link building takes advantage ofyour current audience and expands your reach to a new one.
Advanced keyword strategy
When it comes to capturing your target audience and growing your personalbrand, don’t shy away from a keyword strategy. If you look at the top personalbranding experts, most of them are comfortable with the basics of keywordresearch.
Use free tools like Google Adwords and Keyword Planner to create a list ofwords related to your personal brand and industry. Using tools like theselet you investigate the volume of searches for specific keywords.
So what? You may ask. Well, by doing research on words related to your industry,you can find specific keywords or phrases (long-tail keywords) that a subsetof your desired audience is searching for.
The search results currently ranking for those kinds of keywords probablyaren’t that competitive. By choosing content topics carefully and optimizingthe content properly, you can likely get your piece ranking for that keyword.
Even if only 100 people look up that term per week, you’ll get a significantportion of those people to view your content once it’s ranking in the firstor second spot of search results.
While this takes research, patience and awesome content, an advanced keywordstrategy gets new people to discover you organically, and help the audienceyou’ve built with personal branding continue to grow over time.
While the focus of personal branding should be about getting your story out thereand connecting with the right people, another important aspect of actively brandingyourself has to do with risk factors.
Personal branding to defend against a crisis
By thoughtfully developing your personal brand online, you are taking preventativesteps. The act of personal branding will help you preemptively combat negative orirrelevant online content about you or someone who shares your name.
Even if there is nothing unflattering published about you online right now, there’salways the chance that a disgruntled former employee, an unreasonable client, or atemperamental ex will change that.
Instead of having to jump into crisis management mode when this happens, you arealready getting ahead of that scenario through consistent work and development ofyour personal brand.
If you haven’t already done so, sign up for our DIY tool to help you stay on trackand keep your personal branding efforts heading in the right direction.
Our free tool offers:
- Social Scan Technology
- Guides from BrandYourself University
- Reputation Score
- Regular audits of your online presence
- Alerts when negative search results appear or change in rankings for your name
- Steps to take to regularly optimize your sites
- Much more
Dealing With Negative Search Results
If you find yourself in the unfortunate position of having damaging search resultspop up when someone googles your name, you’re not alone.
Even though this is not uncommon, the effects can still take a toll on your professionaland personal life.
BrandYourself was in part founded because Pete Kistler couldn’t get an internshipsince he shared his name with a criminal. Google searches that resulted in a mistakenidentity caused tons of rejections. It also crystallized the importance of accessibletools for online reputation management and personal branding.
If you find yourself in a situation similar to Pete’s, all hope isn’t lost.
Developing a strong cohesive personal brand online isn’t going to happen overnight.However, over time you’ll find that the process of personal branding provides theadded benefit of suppressing negative content and replacing it with a more completepicture of who you are.
To learn more about dealing with negative search results and how that relates to yourpersonal brand, visit our advanced guide from BrandYourself Universityhere.
In that guide, you’ll find:
- How to build your personal brand’s foundation
- How to optimize your sites and profiles
- Updating old and creating new content
- Techniques to 'delete' or de-index offending search results
- Filing a request with Google
- Filing a DMCA takedown request
- The right to be forgotten
- Revenge porn
- And more
Most successful people have to deal with negative, irrelevant or personal search resultsat some point. Even so, it can feel like an embarrassing failure when it happens. Try tobrush that reaction aside, and instead focus on what you can control.
Dealing With Negative Search Results
If you don’t have time to put in the work that it takes to build and maintain a personalbrand successfully, BrandYourself offers a number of managed services packages. We arehappy to do the work for you and handle the entirety of the personal branding process.
No matter what your needs are, our team of experts are ready to work with you to come upwith a solid strategy to accomplish your goals.
While every client campaign is different regarding the specifics of their personal brandingstrategy and execution, you can expect the following when you work with our in-house teamof specialists:
- We build you an online personal brand that highlights your expertise
- We make sure people find your presence when they google you
- We continually create positive content that positions you as a thought leader in your field
- We strategically start to help you build an audience to amplify the opportunities coming your way
- We leverage thought leadership to find speaking, press, and career opportunities
- We monitor the web for damaging content and mitigate the impact if anything shows up
- We report on your progress as your online reputation improves over time
Where You Go From Here
In today’s competitive job market, a strong personal brand is no longer a 'like to have',but a 'must have'. Whether you choose to use our DIY tool on your own, or enlist the helpof a highly trained Reputation Specialist, it’s time to get started with personal branding.
No matter who is doing the work for you, make sure that the work is consistent,valuable, shared with the right people, and optimized for search engines and usersalike.
The steps in this guide have shown what is your personal brand, how to build yourbrand, but how to make sure the right people find it.
Now that you have a basic understanding of how this works, get started withBrandYourself’s DIY softwarewhich takes you through the personal branding process step by step.
If you want to take things even further, let us do the work for you. Give us a callat (646) 863-8226, or schedule a free consultationto discuss the best custom solution for you from our in-house Managed Services team.