Personal Branding and the ideas behind developing your personal brand are increasingly talked about and written about here on the internet. However, personal branding is more than a fad, and we’ve discussed the importance of it here at Delightful for years.
While more and more people are focusing on their personal brands, there are several key mistakes that can happen. These mistakes can be detrimental to the success you’ll have in growing your personal brand.
Not having a purpose
While developing your personal brand, you identify your professional purpose. This is the reason you work. The reason you get out of bed in the morning, the reason you do what you do.
How does the mistake come in?
By trying to build a brand without doing the work of identifying, and putting into words, your professional purpose or mission. Without it, your personal brand is empty. Without the real ‘why’ behind what you’re doing and why you’re building your personal brand, you’re going to be building a brand without a purpose as well.
Focus on finding the reason you get out of bed, do the work that you do. Once you identify your professional purpose, building your brand around that will be much easier.
Trying to be known for too much
There are many of us who have diverse interests, diverse talents. We thrive off learning and trying new things. While that’s not a bad thing, there is such a thing as trying to focus on too much.
While you don’t have to niche down your personal brand to a fraction of a niche, you do need to have a focus. If you’re trying to be a thought leader, and you’re writing and putting out content related to 5 completely different areas, your message is going to be diluted.
Not creating relevant and actionable content
I get it, not everyone’s a writer nor prolific with ideas for content. But, just because it isn’t your strong suit doesn’t mean it isn’t incredibly important. While sharing others content can help focus your personal brand, it doesn’t make you stand out.
If you’re going to talk the talk, you’re going to have to walk the walk. One of the best ways to build your personal brand is to create and share authentic, useful, relevant, and actionable content. By creating content that others can benefit from, they’re going to start thinking of you when they want to learn about what you’re focusing on.
For people to want to engage with you and what you have to say, you’re going to need to be able to provide authentic, useful, relevant, and actionable content. The best way to do so is to take your expertise and knowledge from your field and distill it into actionable content.
Not being confident
It’s hard to put yourself out there. It can be nerve-wracking and intense, and it can often bring to light doubts you have about yourself and your abilities. However, letting that doubt show can be extremely detrimental to your personal brand.
Think about the leaders and people you look up to and trust. Are they confident in their abilities? Do they share their work or thoughts with prefaces? Probably not. If you’re not creating content that you believe in or sharing work you’re not confident about, you’ll likely fall flat.
If you don’t believe in yourself, others likely won’t either.
Not being consistent
Once you do the work to define your personal brand, you need to stick to it. If you keep deciding after a few weeks that what you’re doing isn’t working and keep ‘redefining’ your personal brand and changing your strategy, it is going to hinder any progress you might make. If you do the work, your personal brand strategy should be good to go once you define it. So, sticking with it, even if it’s difficult, is going to be key to building your personal brand successfully.
You need to stick with your strategy and stick with the niche you’ve identified. Being consistent is what will keep people returning to your profiles or platforms over time. You can write and post one fantastic LinkedIn article, but if they come back a few times and you haven’t written anything valuable or updated with any content since, they’ll stop returning.
So, are you accidentally making personal branding mistakes?
We know that building your personal brand can be difficult and take time to see the benefits. It may not be your most exciting task or project to work on, especially when you aren’t directly seeing the benefits of the work you’re doing.
That doesn’t necessarily mean that what you’re doing isn’t working. If you follow best practices and avoid the mistakes we outlined here, then your work will eventually pay off. Identify your purpose, narrow your focus create relevant and actionable content, be confident in yourself, and, stay consistent.
For more resources on personal branding, check out our series on How to Build a Personal Branding Strategy.
Interested in learning the best practices for building your personal brand? Buy Mel’s book, Introduction To Personal Branding: Ten Steps Toward A New Professional You, today.
Thanks for reading. Don’t forget to: subscribe to The Personal Brand Lab, follow @Delightful on Twitter, like the Delightful Facebook Page, and join us on LinkedIn.
Kylee Schmuck – Digital Marketing Specialist at Delightful