Make no mistake to think that branding is for businesses (products or services) alone. Branding is for people too. Every person is a brand in his or her own right, and that includes you. As an entity, you are special, unique and rare. This rarity you owe to make known to the world and personal branding gives you just that opportunity to do so.
Whether you’re a consultant, a freelancer, a self-employed, a contractor, a blogger, a coach, a trainer, a hired worker, a fashion enthusiast, a film maker, a creative designer, a publisher to mention but a few. Growing a personal brand is one thing you should consider if you really want to stand out.
PERSONAL BRANDING DEFINED
Personal branding is self-packaging. It’s about understanding your unique attributes i.e. your values, skills, strengths, passions and goals, and using them to differentiate yourself from your peers or competitors. You’ll agree with me that there are some people who just seem to shine at every given opportunity. Whether at job interviews or at pitching business ideas, they just seem to stand out. Not significantly because of their academic certificates or professional qualifications. But primarily because they have harnessed and plugged into the power of their core – their natural ability – that which makes them different from every other individual.
Now, let’s get down to the 5 reasons. By all means, there are far more reasons than these but I’ve only chosen to limit the scope to the ones below;
#1. The Market Is Highly Competitive
On a world stage, there are on-going economic and political events purportedly exerting undue pressure on organisations and businesses to cut and shrink their budgets, seek alternative means of funding or become extinct. So, the business landscape right now is fiercely competitive and likewise the job market. Statistics showed that 95% of recruiters believe that the job market will remain or get even more competitive. So, he who brings the most value at the least cost is king.
On the other hand, there are countless people offering the same products or services that you provide. There are a number of professionals with the same skill-sets and experience as yours. So, whether you’re an employee or entrepreneur, you need to stand out from the countless number of others. As a result, personal branding gives you the ability to plug that gap.
#2. Your Brand Is An Asset
A brand is an asset on its own. For the sake of clarity and understanding of what an asset is, I have listed below definitions from different sources; So, an asset is defined as…
- A useful or valuable quality, skill, or person. – Cambridge English Dictionary
- A resource with economic value that an individual, corporation or country owns or controls with the expectation that it will provide future benefit. – Investopedia
- Anything tangible or intangible that can be owned or controlled to produce value and that is held by a company to produce positive economic value is an asset. – Wikipedia
Therefore, we can easily deduce that a brand is useful, has economic value and can be of a huge benefit to the owner.
#3. It Breeds Trust
Branding in general breeds trust and trust is the foundation of every rewarding relationship whether in business or social circle. So, with personal branding, you can grow your credibility. And this is not far from the fact that people buy into who we are first, before buying into what we do — the business we run or the organisation we work for. Therefore, personal branding offers you the opportunity to build trust and credibility.
#4. Expands Your Influence
It positions you as a trusted voice; a go-to person and a thought leader in your chosen field. Someone whose opinions count and has come to be regarded as an influencer. As for me, I’ve come to understand that influence is everything. Especially in this digital era, where with just a click of a mouse on social media, you’re able to reach vast number of people, households, cultures and markets in a matter of seconds.
So, your ability to develop a strong-base of followership is directly dependent on how trusted, personable and valuable you are as a brand.
#5. Increases Your Networth
Ironically, people buy brands far more than anything else. Let’s take a cue from consumer brands. When you have a product in the market that delivers value and has become a trusted and established name. It automatically drives sales even with little or no advertising and becomes a generic name for other products in its category. And because sales is increasing, customer base is also growing and by extension, more revenue is generated for the business.
In the same fashion, a personal brand that is focused on delivering value to its audience or market will bring about increased sales, increased clientele and automatically increased networth.