You probably know by now what building a powerful and visible personal brand can do for your organisation, but have you given much thought to what it can do for you personally?
You might not have done – we’re taught to focus on the business benefits, rather than what we as individuals can expect to gain from developing an attractive personal brand. After all, you’re not going to be able to demand budget to build a personal brand that primarily benefits you.
Whether or not you’ve recognised the potential personal gains before, though, a personal brand has benefits beyond getting your company more business. So, let’s look at what YOU can seek to gain from a powerful personal brand, as selfish as that might sound.
1. Greater opportunity
With greater visibility comes greater opportunity. Clients, vendors, press and even companies looking to hire, will come to you, rather than you having to go out and find them. Do you think somebody like Richard Branson has to tout himself out to get media appearances, writing opportunities and speaking engagements? Opportunities find him.
2. More followers
We live in funny times, but the more followers you have on social media, the more interesting and relevant you become – as long as you’re actively posting interesting and relevant content, of course. Keep posting it regularly and just watch your followers (and therefore your credibility) swell.
3. Greater industry knowledge
Building a personal brand requires you to create compelling content that you then go on to share with your network. Creating content that people want to read, on a regular basis, can be hard work, but one of the things you get in return is a greater industry knowledge. That knowledge will be worth its weight in gold at networking events and speaking engagements.
4. Greater employability
We’ve touched on this already, but employers are much more likely to hire you if you carry a strong, positive presence on social media. In fact, 84% of hiring managers use social media to hire – 96% use LinkedIn and 53% use Twitter, according to SHRM. They’re trying to gauge what you’re like as a person – your CV probably won’t give away much of your personality. If you’re found to be posting about news and ideas from your industry, your employability can’t fail to improve.
5. Make new friends
You can’t have enough friends – especially if you work in business. Keeping active by proactively engaging on social media, as part of building your personal brand, will offer you a platform to make new friends. It starts with a simple exchange on social media about a shared interest – before you know it, you’re arranging to take the conversation offline to properly get to know one another and even help each other out.
6. More luck
You’ve heard it all now, right? But fortune really does follow the bold, and it’s a bold move to build a personal brand in many ways as it’s not something that everybody is doing. There is some logic behind the notion that nurturing a personal brand brings you more luck. It only takes the right person to stumble across your popular social media account for a slice of ‘serendipity’ to occur… You’ll be surprised how many chance encounters occur when you’ve made a bit of a name for yourself. You might say it’s not luck at all.
We won’t linger for too long on the personal benefits of personal branding. Like we said, they shouldn’t be your primary concern as you set about building up your online presence. They’re a nice by-product of the process, though, aren’t they?