Increasingly you are judged on your contributions to the web – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Blogs etc. You will gain an online persona – your personal brand – whether you want to or not. This can affect large parts of your life and certainly gaining business and work opportunities. Your personal brand really does matter and you can develop it as you wish! If you make a positive effort it can make a major contribution to your success.
Benjamin Yoskovitz. is the CEO & co-Founder of Standout Jobs, a venture-backed startup founded in 2007. He is also a blog and social media consultant. He has been an entrepreneur for 10+ years in the Web space, working extensively in web & software development. He is obsessed with creating things and with customer service. The piece below is from his blog to which there is a link at the bottom. These are his thoughts, not mine, but I would love to hear what you think!
“ Personal Branding Lessons
Looking back, here are some thoughts from my own experiences building my personal brand:
- It’s never too late to start. In some respects I think it’s easier to start making a concerted effort to build and cultivate your personal brand once you’re older and you have a few years working experience. You know more, you’re more comfortable in your shoes, and you have some experience to rely on. There are still too many examples of young people screwing up in public (on Facebook or Twitter) and getting in trouble for it (although there aren’t that many examples, they’re just blown out of proportion.
- You know more than you realize. A lot of people seem afraid to speak up publicly and promote themselves because they don’t feel like they have anything to say. You’d be surprised what you know.
- What you know is valuable. And what you know is likely valuable to a bunch of people, even if you don’t realize it. As they say, Common sense isn’t all that common. Just think of the college graduate coming up after you into your field of expertise, and the difference between where that person is at and where you’re at…
- Connecting online is easier than you think. I was amazed at how easily I could connect online with people. I still remember some of those early connections – Liz Strauss, Becky McCray, Chris Cree, Mike Sansone, Terry Starbucker and so many more. It was easy to find people online (who shared my interests), get myself involved, and build out a valuable network.
- It takes time and commitment. Building your personal brand isn’t something you do once in awhile when you’re bored. It takes time and commitment, and it never stops. And doing it half-ass won’t get you anywhere.
- It’s fun. I’ve always enjoyed building my personal brand, and the activities that are involved with that online – blogging, connecting, helping others, asking for help. It’s a process you have to enjoy otherwise you won’t do it properly and invest the right time. Plus, there is a feedback loop – as you gain valuable connections, leads (for jobs or business), comments on your blog, etc. you’ll realize that all of that is worthwhile feedback on your efforts. And that’s motivating.
- Watch. Learn. Emulate. Do your own thing. Starting the process of building your personal brand doesn’t involve years of research or anything that hasn’t been done before. As Dan’s book proves – there are models for making this stuff work. I remember spending a good amount of time watching and learning, and then emulating what others were doing. It was natural to copy what seemed to be working. But over time you branch out, do your own thing, experiment and your own personality, brand, value emerges.
- Your personal brand will (and should) evolve. Don’t think of your personal brand as a static item. It’s not a resume that you submit once and forget about; it’s a living, breathing thing. It changes and evolves, just as you do. That’s OK and expected.
Personal branding works. I’m a perfect use case for it. And certainly not the only one! But ultimately, I’m convinced that building a strong personal brand can absolutely help in career success (be it finding a new job, moving up within your organization, changing careers, etc.) and in many cases is a necessity.”
Read more: “The Importance of Personal Branding” – http://www.instigatorblog.com/personal-branding-important/2009/04/15/#ixzz0DxJbbzQW&A