The Future is Personal

In case you haven’t realized it, we’re not just approaching the end of a year, but an entire decade! So much has changed over the past 10 years. How we talk about ourselves in personal and professional settings has certainly evolved. Who would have ever thought that publicly sharing our opinions on mental health or social injustice would become everyday topics of discussion?

I’ve been preaching for some time now that as more and more of our lives are lived online, we need to take control of our personal brands – what we say, do, and overall how we present ourselves. It’s taken a lot of education and prodding, but people are starting to get what I’ve been saying.

If you’re new to my brand evangelism, here’s the CliffsNotes version: Whether you’re a professional athlete, business owner, or stay-at-home parent with a side hustle, managing your online and in-person reputation is one of your most vital business assets.

As we head into the next decade, below are some tips to help your personal brand evolve and stand out.

Get with a plan – I can’t stress enough that growing your personal brand must start with a plan. What are you hoping to achieve? Who are you trying to reach? These are questions your plan must address. Your plan doesn’t need to be War and Peace. It can be a few simple bullet points. Whatever method you choose, you’re far more likely to be successful having a plan than not. Another tip is to be as specific as possible with your goals. There’s research to back me up on this point.

Get comfortable with the unknown – Personal brand building takes patience and continual effort. There will be times when it feels like your content is completely unnoticed, but you have to keep going. Remaining consistent will create a groundswell that will eventually bring your target audience to you – I promise. But what I won’t promise is a set timeline, because unfortunately I’m not psychic.

Post with intent – Having a plan will certainly help guide you on what to post and when. Should you decide to ignore my sage advice, at least hear this: Post with intent. By this I mean that you share fewer images of your meals and more content that helps support your strategic brand goals. For example, if part of your brand is to be a dynamic public speaker, we should see content that supports that claim.

Engage with intent – As a true social butterfly, I engage with lots of people online and off. Some is for my personal enjoyment, but most is done with a purpose because that brand or influencer is followed by my target audience(s). If you’re going to spend your life scrolling your feed, at least make that time work for you.

When good enough is good enough – Not every post is going to be the picture of artistic perfection. That would be boring and inauthentic—and simply not realistic for the majority of people to achieve. You need to remain agile to remain relevant. Learn the difference between when your content needs to go out quickly and when it needs to go out perfectly.

Let someone else do the work – I don’t mean me (but if you’d like to hire me, please don’t hesitate). I mean allowing others like journalists and volunteer organizations to create content about you. Since the dawn of time, third-party validation is one of the most surefire ways to gain attention. So make sure you’re engaging with relevant press and leveraging your volunteer opportunities and networks.

If your brand really hasn’t launched, no worries. I have plenty of past blogs to help you get started. If you’ve started and are stuck or need next-level assistance, contact me. Every personal brand is, well, personal. I like to assist everyone on a case-by-case basis.

Either way, I hope that you have a safe and happy holiday season. Rest. Relax. Take some personal time to reflect on your blessings. And finally, thanks for following my content. I appreciate you.

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