Have you ever wondered what is the origin of ‘trends’? Of course, they aren’t the work of one single individual, yet, as in when they develop, they begin to convert a sea of users towards them- almost magnetically.
What causes this magnetic effect? We all know the power that brands and commercial houses with big names have over us- more often than not, we prefer to shell out those extra bucks simply because of two things associated with that brand- credibility and irresistibility. Why are big brands so sought after? Leaving the ‘quality’ factor of their product offering out of it, it is simply because these brands spend billions each year only to make you believe that what they’re offering to you is not a want, but a need.
As marketing trends developed, this effect permeated towards another sector that was earlier on reserved for only those in the limelight such as celebrities, politicians, fortune 100 businesses to just about anyone.
Yes, that’s right- I’m talking about your personal brand, and how it isn’t reserved to a particular status quo anymore. All you require is some time and effort to build your niche and convert your industry experience to expertise.
So how can you build your very own personal brand? As daunting as it seems, taking it up step by step can help you reach there & here’s exactly how you can do that.
1) Identify your niche
The interesting thing about demand, is that it already exists. What you have to do is channel it towards you.
Now, you can’t force people to search something specific. What you can do is optimize what they’re already searching and guide it towards you. Using SEO to do that is one of most relevant techniques you can use.
Yet, despite that, when you’re adding traffic to your page, how do you define what is that you do that’s so different from everybody else? This is where you have to identify your niche.
Which is why, you have to pick something that is right up your alley, in other words you area of expertise. The whole definition of personal brand stands tall on creating value out of the authority you have on a subject- and remember that you can go as detailed as you like.
For example, you have domain specific knowledge as a trend forecaster but your area of expertise includes lifestyle and interiors. You can go as deep into your niche as you like- all you have to do is make sure it’s unique to you.
2) It’s all about personality
We spoke about finding that particular area where you believe you’re one of the best. Of course, doing so requires you to evaluate your own skillset and potential market value.
The step after that is all about what you actually have to offer- what are your views, opinions and tonality on a common topic, basically, what value addition are you bringing to those who follow your personal brand.
Your personality and voice is basically one of the main things that will differentiate you from what others in the same domain are talking about. This is why it’s important to be honest and appear as if there’s nothing you’re holding back.
Let me explain with the help of an example. Let’s talk about motivational speakers such as Jay Shetty and Lily Singh.
At the core of it, they have a lot of similarities: they’re both Indian, born and brought up outside of their home country and have risen up to speak honestly about their opinions and about success.
Yet, you would never associate the two with each other. Why is that? Simply because everything from the way they talk to the way they dress is so authentic to who they are as individuals, that even if they’re saying almost the same thing, they do so in a way that appears totally different.
Lilly Singh converses using more slangs and in a more relatable fashion to the millennials while Jay Shetty’s tonality has a hint of seriousness to it. Through this, they’ve been able to establish their target audience as well as their niche.
3) Design your personal website
There are over 1.5 billion websites in the world wide web today. Of these, less than 200 million are active. Thankfully, this last sentence reduces the competition a bit. Despite that though, if we widen our reach to content, we can’t even quantify the amount of content that gets published every day.
So how are people supposed to find you in this never-ending ocean? You may be producing some fabulous content for sites such as Forbes and so on, but how can the average user seek you out? And isn’t that why you’re creating such content in the first place? To be seen and establish expertise in your domain?
That’s where a functional personal web-site comes handy. It allows people to find you easily and convert even faster.
4) Guest Blogging to promote your personal brand
The ironic thing about getting noticed, is not just to constantly create content for your own platforms. Instead, if you spend time trying to get to other sites which already have the traffic and audience numbers you need can boost your presence in the industry to a large amount.
Now that you have leveraged those eyeballs by being present on websites such as Forbes, you can drive that attention back to your personal site.
Another mechanism that can you help gain a relevant stature in your industry is the feature of bank links when you guest post. Usually, when you write a guest post, you can actually create back links that notify the leaders in the industry from who you may have sourced content, or written similar content to acknowledge what you create.
In this way, when people visit their websites, they’ll also come across your back link which takes them directly to your content.
Remember that it’s all about your networking and proving your net worth to people, and the closer you are the people who’re already up there, the faster you can achieve that goal.
5) Take guidance from mentors
The same way you’re out here to offer your services and most importantly, service to those who’re in need of them- you can do the same.
No person is a born expert in all areas. You may be absolutely brilliant in let’s say, financial advisory but with no real idea on how to create content for pages such as Forbes and entrepreneur.com to build your personal brand.
This is where mentorship enters the game. Getting your content recognized by experts is important because it is through their referrals and networks you can actually pull through the top.
Where do you think athletes would be without their fleet of mentors? They’ve got mentors to advise them on each and every aspect of their life- from athletics, to PR to finance. Often, these people stay behind the curtain and yet, they’re the ones who shape up majority of such public figures career. Take Usain Bolt for example. He admits that Glen Mills was the man behind his record shattering career and that he looks up to him.
According to a report conducted by Harvard Business Review, 84% CEO’s claimed that mentors helped them avoid costly mistakes, 84% of them became proficient in their roles faster and 69% became better at making decisions.
Take help where you can- building a personal brand is kind of like building a house- you can’t reach the top if the pillars aren’t in place.
Easy as I’ve made it sound, you should be aware of the fact that developing your personal brand isn’t something that can happen overnight. It takes significant effort but it’s claimed to be one of the highest ROI activates.
Yet despite all that, establishing authority and converting that into your benefit is definitely doable, all you need are the above steps and the correct inclination to do so.