We have watched our idols Gary Vanyerchuck and Tony Robbins create content and talk about personal branding for many years now. We have read many churned thought leadership articles about it. The term 'personal branding' is not new; in fact, it was coined by Tom Peters in 1992. So why are more and more people just jumping on the bandwagon now? and what will happen if we don't?
I developed my own personal brand in 2016. Career- girl, my alter - ego 'Deals in High Heels' opened me up to many opportunities. I can personally vouch that there are benefits of building a personal brand. For me, it even led to the birth of my personal branding agency! After seeing me market out my skills, my values and industry expertise across social media, many entrepreneurs and small business owners started coming to me for advice. A common theme I heard, was that many had put a lot of time and resources into marketing out their business over the years, without realising the importance of marketing the face and brains running their company.
Obviously, when you meet a potential new client, you don't jump in straight away by selling the company - that would scare them off. Firstly, you need to spend the time to build rapport and cultivate their trust. You do this through small talk to establish common ground - what you did in the weekend, where you live, what you are into. You share your own work experience - why are you qualified for this job? Unless you invented a new product, your company's USP (everything that differentiates your company from your competition) is partially YOU.
With many now Googling you prior to meeting you, imagine your potential client's pleasant surprise when they come across some creative high-quality content about your product, or a thought - leadership article you wrote? I've met people for the first time who have expressed that they already feel like they know me to a certain extent since they had visited my website. This added trust surely contributes to the sale closing.
With all of us now leading online lives, I'd be surprised that even if you hadn't been building a purposeful digital brand unless you live under a rock with no internet, chances are you have one - 92% of children under two scarily already have a digital footprint. But will you choose to guide it onto further sales? Many are, as with the changes in the social media algorithms it's getting harder and harder to reach people organically without paying towards ads.
So will you chose to let it run wild and turn clients off when they Google you? Or cultivate and guide it into further sales? Will your competition leave you in the dust? The decision is for you.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Briar Prestidge is the CEO and Founder of Briar Prestidge International. With a background in digital marketing, branding and executive headhunting, Briar has an international career that spans over Dubai, New York, London, Melbourne and Auckland.
She is renown for her personal branding work with high-profile clients and has been featured in CEO Magazine Middle East, Entrepreneur Middle East, Ella Magazine, Khaleej Times and The Media Network.
Briar is also the Managing Director of media and events agency, Deals in High Heels and a talk show host. As a speaker, she presents on personal branding, digital and social media strategy, and motivation.