When it comes to ‘Personal Branding', all we talk about is making Branding a conscious and living process. It is creating our authentic self and finding that unique space in the world of copies. ‘Personal Branding‘ means that we get to decide how people must see us or what we hear about ourselves. It is the process of making others see what we wish to make them see about ourselves. But the only way one can tap this power is by nurturing Authenticity and Uniqueness. Now the question comes up that ‘Why' is it important? and ‘How' to go about it?
There are 4 Ws' of Personal Branding which I would love to discuss one at a time.
Why go for Personal Branding?
You may be an artist or an ambitious entrepreneur but in a world so full of talented people out there, do you find yourself standing out in some aspect? The question is who knows you? Or, if they do know you then what is that they know about you? In most of the cases, we may be known to a group of friends or our next door neighbours or to the people of our colony we live in. Then think about it when no one knows anything about us, how are they going to approach us? People perceive us on the basis of information they receive about us from various sources. So, the only way to show yourself out there is to become visible. To gain success, your reputation must precede your name. These words like ‘Reputation' or ‘Fame' are nothing but the quality of information circulating about you! If you aspire to become an entrepreneur, then till the time your ideas reach out to others, no one will spot you and we shall remain a wasted talent all our lives. Do you want this for yourself? No employer shall hire you without knowing about you. Not just this even for finding a suitable spouse today, one does a lot of research. Everything comes back to your visibility. For instance, you are going on vacation to a new place and you have no idea about the place, its hotels or other tourist spots. So what will you do? Most of us go to the official webpage of that hotel and learn about its rating, the facilities available and the reviews and then you make a judgement. What they show you online, you believe it with all your heart. Am I right or am I not? This is exactly what we do. Branding in simple terms mean making a statement "This is who I am" , laying down a set of your characteristics and projecting it with conviction.
What to do?
To become a brand, there are two things that need to be taken care of, first we need to be Authentic and secondly we have to identify our Uniqueness. Authenticity means that we are what we actually are. You cant be two different people when it comes to your professional or personal life. When you have no faces to hide and when you are yourself, you earn trust from people which is the basis of all personal and professional relationships. What is your reaction when you are fooled by the pictures of a beautiful hotel which in reality turns out to be a disaster! Do you find it pleasant? Of course not! Then if you are trying to show something which you are not, then sooner or later you will be caught. Authenticity can never be replaced.
I love Ranvir Singh for the reason that wherever you find him whether on a film screen or a social event or at his home, he is just the same and that's what make him a great person. Authenticity empowers you because it means you are not afraid to be yourself. Your relationships, your words and even your pictures must be an extension of your personality and not something that you take from outside. Uniqueness is another dimension that we need to work on. Most of us exist as photocopies. If a person is doing great in something, we blindly follow it without thinking for a second that do I as a person relate to it, is it my extension? Is it really me? I have seen people doing food blogging, if one starts, others follow. There is nothing wrong in it but where is the variety. Thousands of people going to the same place, posting the same kind of food and expecting attention. This is not how things will work. We need to pick just one thing but do it with all the passion that is inside of us. Not even one DNA matches another, then it is for sure that at our fundamental level, we all are unique. We can't last long in this race of life till we have something which no one has! Write a blog, use the same ideas but do it in way that is only yours. If you promote business ideas, think out of the box, don't just repeat what other person said. There is a possibility that initially you may not receive the desired appreciation but in the long run, you will win because you are not a copy.
Be active on Social Media Its time now to remove the negative connotation from the word ‘Social Media', I m not judging whether it is good or bad but all I know is that it is our current reality and if we use it to our advantage, then there is nothing better than that. Go for Instagram, Facebook or Twitter or say even Snapchat. There is nothing wrong in it . Say something which you relate to say for instance, fashion, business or anything. Your say counts! What you say becomes 'You', so be cautious of what you say. Write a blog or share a picture that you associate with. Never forget you are branding yourself, your words are becoming you! Make a profile, choose a name which is unique and get started right away.
What to write and When to write?
Sometimes on Facebook or Instagram we do get these friend requests with weird names which we often reject. So the next important thing is that we need to create a profile with a unique name which is not shared by anyone, so that when people search you, there must be less number of people competing with you. The name of your profile must be attractive and easy to pronounce. After making a profile, you need to decide an area of your expertise or even for your personal life, the pictures you select must have some meaning for you. The relationships you form must be genuine. Consistent relationships which decorate your profile walls attract people and make you a loyal and trustworthy person.
Whatever you post must have relevance to you irrespective of what the world demands. Whatever you write or say must be consistent with your daily actions and you must regularize your writing or blogging and must be done on weekly or monthly basis which is even true for your personal life. There are people out there whose personality gets reflected with a single post, one day you get a subliminal post on spirituality and the other day they come with some practical and materialistic tips. Are we trying to fool ourselves or others? What we are doing is purely contradicting ourselves, if you are spiritual then you have nothing to do with the practality of life! That’s the only rule! I am not saying that being practical is something bad but if you just accept it and don't go on contradicting yourself on social media. That wall is a scanner, if you are not authentic, your name won't last long!
Branding is not to be limited to Social Media but it must be an integral part of our existence. We say we are creating our authentic self which means that what we are online we must be offline as well. So what we say or do in our personal lives is very much a part of personal branding. For instance you are in a party, surrounded by people of all kinds who have little or no information about you, so in order to create a unique space for yourself where people remember you in a certain desired way when they leave the party, you need to adopt principles of personal branding like you must be the same person in front of all people out there, you must say things which really matter to you and are consistent with your own life, you must know well the direction you are heading in and you must have impressive communication skills and just by being your true self, you will attract people who admire you and you shall show them what you want to make them see. Everything you say or do in real life, the relationships you hold and your unique personality is exactly what you need to pay attention to in order to create the brand called you. Here too you need to focus on two things, your authentic personality, authentic relationships and authentic style of living and also nurturing your uniqueness as a person. Making yourself a brand is not something bad but it means that you are the driver of your own life. Somehow life will always brand you but the moment you decide for yourself what you wish to make others see what they want to see in you or hear what you wish to hear about yourself, then you become your destiny!