that is a great misconception about personal brands is that it is what belongs to big-time celebrities. A personal brand is not just for a celebrity, it is for everyone. Celebrities have realized how critical their personal brands are and they watch the like a hawk.
In coming up with a personal brand, we are not necessarily doing it for the cameras and microphones. We are not putting up a facade when we have skeletons of inauthenticity in our cupboards. We build personal brands because we are passionate about serving the world with our value add.
Today, more than ever, a personal brand is increasingly becoming critical. I said earlier on that the time is coming and has now come when we shall be engaged to work not because of our academic papers, but because of our personal brands. All of us need to start minding what it is, start crafting int and start owning and showing it.
In the previous article, we started a mini-series that will teach us what the five core pillars of a personal brand are. Let’s get it straight: Each personal brand is as unique like no other, but the pillars for building each unique personal brand are the same. People’s brands might have the same solution but differ in delivery or audience or excellence.
The first core pillar of a personal brand is the solution you are providing. There is something that you are passionate about, that you are skilled at and that brings you joy, but at the same time, it is a solution to a problem somewhere.
As such you are not doing what you are doing just to make a living or a quick buck. You are doing it because you love, and you care. You are a hero and there is a villain out there that you are up against. If you set up a brand for any other thing than this, you will easily become inauthentic and you will be found out soon enough by your targeted audience.
One of the most important things to do about your personal brand is to determine who your primary audience is. It is these that you will focus on creating solutions incessantly. Perhaps the biggest mistake we make with our personal brands is to think that we can do all things and that the whole wide world is our audience.Perhaps the biggest mistake we make with our personal brands is to think that we can do all things and that the whole wide world is our audience. Click To Tweet
Isn’t that the very reason as to why academic papers are no longer working for everyone? We have increased the pedigree of academic papers so much so that the next frontier in that arena is Masters. Degrees just won’t cut it anymore. Perhaps the greatest mistake a job seeker does when asking for work is to say that they are able to do anything, just give them work.
Granted, they can start from anywhere and start working their way up. With a personal brand though, you start with it, you proceed with it and you will transcend with it. Chances are that you will miss opportunities for other things that are unrelated to your personal brand because you have not been sent to deliver everyone.
Therefore, it is imperative that you know who it is that is your audience so you can serve them better. A great personal brand has an avatar of sorts of their audience. An avatar is just one person that espouses the characteristics of your targeted audience. You get to know them to the dregs of details:
A great personal brand will niche this audience to specifics and keep niching further an further until it is very painful. People normally are scared of niching down because they think that that way, they will be losing customers. Nothing can be further from the truth. If anything, the opposite happens when you niche down to your avatar.
There has got to be an intersection between your value add as discussed in the previous article and the needs of the avatar that you have just created. This is what makes you their hero. They look at you not as someone to do business with, but someone that offers value to them and solves their problem. That’s the essence of a personal brand.
As such, your targeted audience does not want to be sold. They want to be helped. They do not want to be bogged down with a transactional life. They just want their problem solved by someone who understands them and connects with them at the emotional level. That’s what a personal brand is supposed to do.
As such, if you created a personal brand well, then you will not have to be afraid of inauthenticity given that you niched down to who your targeted audience is. When you do that, you are viewed as an expert, as an authority in that area of problem-solving. The personal brand is what delivers this.
Your audience is not interested in the technical jargon of whatnots. They have a problem and they want it solved. If they have stepped on a nail, they do not want to understand the metallic composition of the nail. They want the nail out and perhaps they might want to know the need for disinfection and such treatments as tetanus, which is a bonus you provide because you care about them than just getting the nail out.
You care about their whole well-being. Therefore, in crafting your personal brand, connect with your targeted audience where it hurts in a caring manner. Reach out to them and connect emotionally with them, not technically. Instead of introducing yourself as a lawyer, you could say, as my lawyers do, “Nurturing growth, offering peace of mind”.
It is really important to take some time and craft a tag that connects emotionally to your targeted audience than just throw around titles such as Life Coach, Teacher, Mentor, President, CEO and so on. A personal brand is going against the grain of academia which exalts titles. It is about value intersecting with the pain of your audience.