By Angelica Malin. Looking to boost your personal brand as an entrepreneur in 2021? Personal brand can be a great way to raise the profile of your work, connect with new audiences and deepen your relationship with your customer base – it’s a cost-free way to do your own marketing and create momentum behind your work. Personal brand gives you control over your career, as you’re writing your own narrative – as Tim Ferris said:
“Personal branding is about managing your name—even if you don’t own a business—in a world of misinformation, disinformation, and semi-permanent Google records. Going on a date? Chances are that your ‘blind’ date has Googled your name. Going to a job interview? Ditto.”
There are so many benefits to having a strong personal brand, including getting total autonomy over your work (as there’s no-one quite like you!), building trust with your audience and helping you create a successful portfolio career. If you’re looking to increase your personal brand visibility, here’s my 4 top tips for building a personal through social media and beyond:
1. Focus on your personal story
When it comes to personal brand, the ‘why’ of your work is super important – as this is what’s going to connect your audience with you and highlight your passion, enthusiasm and purpose for your business. Sharing the reasons behind the work you do as much as possible is great for demonstrating that passion – and don’t be afraid of repeating yourself! Especially on social media, when we’re seeing so many posts every day, repetition is an important strand of any marketing strategy.
Try to include your ‘why’ in captions, on videos and say it out loud as much as possible – share insights into what inspires your day-to-day, who you are trying to help or reach with your work and why you’re passionate about this topic. This is one of the building blocks of personal brand, because no-one is quite like you – you are unique in your story, so share it!
2. Use your social channels
Social media is undoubtedly the best avenue for building a personal brand. You want to focus on creating ‘circles of influence’ on social media – building trust and authority with the right kind of followers, ones which are likely to engage and, ultimately, purchase from you. Get on the audience and demographic you’re looking to attract – that clarity on audience will help guide any social media content strategy and give your content consistency and authority.
Try not to be everywhere – it’s much better to pick two or three social media platforms and post consistently on those, rather than trying to have a presence everywhere. Think about your ideal audience and where they are spending time online, whether it’s TikTok, LinkedIn or Instagram, and focus your energy on the right channels for your dream audience.
3. Find speaking opportunities
Public speaking is a fantastic way to build your personal brand. Create a PR one-page PDF about you and send it over to any dream festivals or events you’d like to speak at. Put yourself forward for opportunities and let event organiser know you’re open to speaking opportunities. If you do speak at events, make sure to get great content out of it – get a recording of your talk and behind-the-scenes video clips for Instagram Stories. Make the most out of every opportunity!
If you’re not getting opportunities, why not put on your own event? You could host your own virtual summit for your industry and bring together like-minded individuals from your community to speak. Think about what value you can bring to your audience and the best way to package it – this might be a workshop, panel event or live podcast. Get curious with your audience and ask them what they would most like to see.
4. Show your face
If you’re looking to build deeper connection with your audience, then you have to show your face! Many people face Imposter Syndrome and anxiety at the thought of talking to camera, but honestly this is the best and quickest way to build rapport and create that ‘personal brand’ experience through social media. Focus on building up your confidence on these platforms and think about ways to collaborate with other high-value individuals in your industry and sphere.
Try getting interactive with your audience – chat to camera on Instagram Stories, go ‘live’ on Instagram or Facebook, do short videos through IGTV and Reels. You want people to connect your face with the work you do – and don’t be afraid to show your personality, as that is what will drive potential customers and clients to your work. Get over that fear and soon you’ll find a whole new world of possibilities open up, when you’re confident talking directly to your audience and showing your face!
Angelica Malin, award-winning entrepreneur, editor in chief of About Time magazine and author of new book She Made It, Kogan Page, £14.99