Your own personal name as a brand is equally as important as giant brands like Apple, GE, Volkswagen and Starbucks. You are your brand. Your brand, your name, is your reputation.
You might have a common name or a unique one. The question is: What do you want your name to stand for? You have a strong name if you choose it to be. Shakespeare said, “What’s in a name?” That’s up to you.
Your brand is what differentiates you from other people. A strong personal brand will get you hired after a job change, or a call from a friend who needs your help, or a visit from a customer who wants to purchase a product/service you offer. In today’s business environment people do business with people, not just a big company.
Here are 8 tools you can employ to brand your personal name:
1. Develop your core message. What is it that you stand for? This message should be used in your conversations, your print ads, your television or radio ads and appearances. What one sentence best illustrates you? If you are not sure, ask your clients, fans or constituents on how they best describe you. Use this as a guide to articulate your message to share your personal brand.
2. Grow your network. This can be done through traditional face-to-face means or through Internet social networks. Participate in non-profit groups; join online networks such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and other specific professional career forums. To get noticed you have to be in front of people.
3. Develop your specialty. What are you great at? What is your gift or strength? Maybe you feel you as though you aren’t really great at anything. What do you want to be excellent at? You always have the power to take the classes and study, practice and develop your area of expertise. Now is the best time to sharpen your saw!
4. Secure your name. This can be done through Internet domain registrations or through securing your name as a registered trademark. If you want to brand it, it’s a good idea to own it, legally. Protecting your brand is another way to strengthen your personal brand name.
“When you’re committed to something, you accept no excuses; only results.”
5. Deliver what you promise. Reliability. Hallmark. Guarantee. These are the words that describe promise. This is the cornerstone of branding your personal name. People need to believe that you are going to fulfill your word. Nothing smashes a person’s name faster than being a flake. Be careful to promise only what you can deliver. Three strikes and you are out, maybe. You might only get one swing! So, make sure you are truly committed to delivering on your promise. If not, then don’t make the promise.
6. Be consistent. Avoid changing your viewpoints because the wind is now blowing in another direction. You confuse what your personal name stands for when you often change to whatever the flavor of the month is. If you act differently in similar scenarios you are going to leave people bewildered. You build a weak brand if people don’t know what you stand for.
7. Create positive experiences. Strong branding creates an emotional tie. Feelings drive behavior and have the power to attract or repel. People want to be associated with positive feelings not negative ones. Likeability is strengthened through a positive vibe. How can you make sure you are emitting the energy that makes others feel good? Create the activities and conversations that are enveloped in optimism.
8. Use endorsements. Nothing is better than other people sharing their positive thoughts and experiences they’ve had with you. When you proclaim your value it is great, yet when others shout your value it is much better. People tend to believe what others say about you than you about yourself. Make the time to garner, in writing or with video and audio, about how great you are and the value you provide. Let the voice of others help to strengthen your brand.
Who you are and what you attract is largely determined by how other people perceive your personal unique brand, your name. You can practice these tools, tips or habits to make a difference. Latch onto at least one of these suggestions to strengthen the power of your personal brand. Your name.
Best of success to you!