One important part of branding is the image you yourself portray. Developing a likable personal brand is essential for succeeding. If you want to rise to the top of your particular arena, you need to first be able to sell yourself to your potential customers.
Think about it. Would you rather do business with a person who smiles and comes across as friendly or with one who snarls and ignores you? The first impression a potential customer receives is from you. Make it a good one.
How can you accomplish this?
One: Become an expert source.
Two: Become a great communicator. Research shows communications skill is the top determinant for upward social and professional mobility.
Three: Draft a marketing plan for yourself annually, and review it quarterly. Include specific goals, strategies, action steps, and a timetable.
Four: Develop an 'elevator speech." Within the time that it takes an elevator to travel one floor - about 60-seconds - be able to deliver a succinct description of what you do, how you do it differently, and the benefit it provides.
Five: Build your Rolodex. Make new business contacts and stay in touch with them. Most people with powerful brands have powerful friends.
Six: Balance your individual style with clothing that will appeal to those you are trying to impress.
Seven: Learn good business and social etiquette. Buy elegant personal stationery and send hand-written notes.
Eight: Give something back. Giving your time, talent, and money to charitable causes is a brand-builder especially when it complements your brand strategy. Find a cause you are passionate about.
Your personal brand is one of your greatest business assets. Put as much time and effort into it as you do in branding your product. In the end, if you can't sell yourself, you'll find it nearly impossible to sell your product.