How to Protect Your Personal Brand

There’s a very real threat to your personal brand.  It’s one you may already suspect: social media.  Using social media carelessly can cause irreparable damage to your personal brand.  Thoughtfully using social media, however, can greatly amplify your brand and help you connect with a much larger network.

Protecting your personal brand is more important than ever.  There have been numerous reports of people hurting their reputation and losing jobs due to social media blunders.  While on the other hand using social media effectively to promote your brand can help open the door to new opportunities.

Digital marketing consultant Mitch Joel feels that personal branding has “lost its way.”  This is in large part due to social media.  He feels that many people are using social platforms to express their personal brands in ways that are sterile and similar to TV news anchors.  In many cases, but not all, original thinking and expression have been lost.

The temptation with social media is to allow it to develop into a popularity contest.  It becomes a numbers game of Facebook friends or Twitter followers for example.  This type of focus can lead us to try and be everything to everyone. 

Let them see the real you

To have a strong and accurate personal brand remember to be authentic.  Personal branding is about you, not other people or your platform.  Joel also outlined 10 core values that are important to any winning personal brand:

  1. Honesty
  2. Being open
  3. Consistency
  4. Emotional
  5. Candid
  6. Sharing
  7. Engaging
  8. Focused
  9. Studious
  10. Caring

Build your brand your way and with passion.  It’s the best strategy to ensure the brand is everything you want it to be.

What are your ideas and thoughts on personal branding?

Author: Steve Sonn

Steve Sonn is the Principal of S2 Marketing Communications. He has more than 25 years of marketing and PR experience with health care and business-to-business companies.

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