[Infographic] Online Personal Branding

Branding helps you to define your business to yourself, to your team, and most importantly, to your esteemed clients. It’s how you define your business to yourself as an individual. In many cases, it takes hard work, time, and vulnerability for a person to open up. Most would rather prefer to wear a mask to cover up what they consider as imperfect. However, the human imperfections and vulnerabilities that make you who you are, are the very qualities that need more exposure so that your audience can relate and get to know you.

In the past, having security often meant sticking to the same job for forty years. A person's identity was very much centered on their job or career. Even nowadays, a common question when you meet someone new is “What do you do?” It is as if your job defines who you are.

But now, times are changing. A modern professional in the millennial generation is estimated to have 10-15 jobs in a lifetime. It is no longer the norm for a person to hold the same job for most of their lifetime. Instead of the focus being staying with one company or employer, it is now up to the individual to continually be able to market themselves as a dependable professional. Being able to control and define your personal brand has now become a field of core interest.

Starting your personal online brand with your own blog or website can turn out to be an amazing adventure. And it will keep evolving just like your career. If the modern career lifespan is no longer tied to a single organization, then it’s time for you to be flexible and start building your personal brand online. Let’s check out some killer tips that can help you connect with your real self and present yourself in the best possible way to the world.

Establishing Proper Communication

The method you use to expose your brand to prospective clients is crucial. Take your time to connect with people you’re interested in and get involved in communicating online, whether through LinkedIn, Twitter, Quora, or any other social media platform. By having your own professional yet personal communication style, you can build the foundation of your online personal brand.

You can leave a positive impression on potential clients with effective communication. Ask yourself: are you answering what they are looking for or are interested in? Make yourself stand out among your competitors by providing helpful and valuable information to your audience.

Maintaining your Online Integrity

It’s vital to maintain high standards of honesty with the people you communicate with online. Branding does not involve use of deceptive lines or tricks to get people to trust you. Market yourself as best you can and keep them informed of your abilities. Whenever you discover that it’s becoming difficult to meet their needs, there will always be a solution. Direct them to someone who are able to help them. Being interested in helping others will help in the long run. Clients will definitely return for more if you show you are engaged and committed to helping them.

Amplifying your Personal Brand with Social Media

Your online persona is, in a modern sense, an extension of your identity. No matter what industry you belong to, defining and branding yourself online has become an integral part of being marketable. If you want to be effective and relevant in the modern world, you don’t have a choice. Jobs, careers, and businesses are being created, driven, and determined by social networks, especially those found online. Your website or blog is your home base and your hub for presenting yourself. Over the last decade, personal branding has received a high volume of online hits, along with the concept of social media marketing.

Further Reading: Blogging is the new resume: Why less is not always more by Ryan Hoover, the co-creator of Product Hunt

Social media is the perfect place for distributing and amplifying your created content so that people can discover and share thoughts and ideas. With over 1.6 billion users around the world, Facebook can be a great outlet to broadcast posts and enhance your career. Recent research shows that Twitter’s role is much more than sharing breaking news in 140-character snippets. Twitter is now a social network that gives online influencers a platform to share their content and build a powerful global distribution. Your LinkedIn profile is a strong representation of your personal brand by showing a history of your professional workplaces.

And then there are other social networks. The rise of mobile-centric platforms such as Pinterest, Instagram, and Vine are also of significant interest. Depending on how much time and resources you have at your disposal, you may consider creating an account on each to build up followers. Newer entrants to the social network space include Meerkat and Periscope. Live video streaming is predicted to be a hot feature for many users. So, it’s a good idea to keep an eye out on the top trending media to use for branding.

Today, much emphasis is placed on personal branding, especially in the online world. Start creating content on your personal website and build distribution by using social networks. Through dedication and hard work, you will be way ahead of your peers. You'll have a bank of great content which will be a digital asset, as well as thousands of followers as part of your network, who will gladly share any valuable content that they receive from you. Having a real online presence and slowly building up followers can only help you in the long run.

It’s time to take control of your future career. It's up to you to take action!

Personal Branding Google Trends
According to Google Trends, personal branding has been getting more and more popular. Its search volume has doubled within the last decade.