Why Personal Branding is Important
With the growing social media platforms and the ever changing landscapes of the digital realm one aspect that is consistent is personal branding. What is personal branding though? Personal branding just means how you are displaying your digital and online presence. Think of the brands you know and like, maybe Coca-Cola, Nike, Apple, Microsoft, Sony, etc. These are all recognizable brands that portray an image in your mind when they are mentioned. If you are doing business in you need to tell people what your brand is and what you want them to think about versus them filling in the blanks on their own. Who is going to represent your brand better than you?
One of the best ways to start building brand awareness about your brand is to get some pictures up on your social media outlets. Facebook, instagram, and LinkedIn are great resources for getting started. Having the same or similar pictures up on all platforms shows consistency when people search for you. This is one simple and effective step that quickly establishes some credibility to your business. The next step is keep a theme or some kind of consistency going in your posts and presence. Take for instance Coca-Cola, their branding color is red and white. When they advertise they usually make sure to add some red in the pictures. The winter themes have a white polar bear in them and they are wearing a red scarf. Those subtle hints tie their branding together to keep their product on the front of your mind.
Personal branding can operate on the same premise as the large corporations. A small business owner can have a branding color scheme, a phrase, or logo that all work with their business model. The content and pictures you use should provide the viewer an idea and feeling of who you are. More and more people are being drawn in to businesses with a personal touch. Getting to know who the owners and employees are goes a long way. People are being turned off by faceless businesses that just focus on the transaction instead of the customer needs. Large corporations have social media staff engaging people on their platforms, responding to emails, call centers going directly to actual humans, and more. The trend is there and people want to feel connected to the people and places they do business with.
One great way to connect with your audience is with a solid headshot (shameless plug to book my services here). Your headshot represents you and your brand. It is the first thing people see when they search for you or come across your information online. Before they contact you they will be researching who you are and what you do. They want to make sure who they do business with is reputable and reliable.
1/10 of second is all you have
Research shows your picture will convey a message within 1/10 of a second. What that message is depends on how your picture is displayed. Are you wearing a bright colored shirt or a dark colored shirt? Do you want to excite people or have a calming effect on them? Your expression will say more than you think in that 1/10 of a second. Your eyes, eyebrows, and mouth all have varying degrees of movement