With the social web, the modern ease of communication, and an ever-connected and wired world, it has never been easier to build your personal brand and share it with the world. And yeah, this assumes you do good work, meet deadlines, and have the respect of the community around you.
But here are a few ideas on some things you can do to give your personal brand a little boost:
1. Engage with real people on the social web. Don’t use Twitter or Facebook as vehicles to drive sell messages one-way. Use them for what they were built for, to actually communicate with real people. Strike up conversations.
2. Publish an ebook. Nothing says you are an expert than when you publish. And since most of us won’t ever publish a book, putting together an e-book is a great way to establish yourself in the marketplace.
3. Interview someone who inspires you. This can be a written article, a blog post, and/or a podcast. But find people who move you, and share the reasons with your audience. You will move them too. And be appreciated for sharing.
4. Announce a charity/non-profit you or your company is supporting. This adds to your story. This makes you different. This makes you trustworthy. And, in addition to helping boost your brand, it will be immensely gratifying!
5. Do a book review. Do a review about a book that made you a better person. And/or a better business person. This helps and serves your audience, providing knowledge they ought to know. But, in a small way, sort of identifies you with the message of the book itself…
6. Announce a big personal goal. For me, it was talking about my distance running. This gets people talking about you. And following you on your journey.
7. Talk about a failure, and what you are going to do as a result of it. This is the stuff of legend. To be courageous enough to talk about your failures, and what you learned from it. This connects with people, because, they have probably had a similar failure. And it helps others avoid your mistakes…
8. Go on the road, and talk about you learned from your destination. We all admire travelers. We live vicariously through them. But what really moves us is when travelers tell us what they learned from their adventures.
9. Publish a bucket list. But more importantly, explain how you are actually going to achieve those dreams. Listing your big goals and adventures? Says a lot about you. And probably connects you to people who share those dreams…
10. Talk about how you overcome a very personal fear. This makes you human. And approachable. And shows you a person of character.
11. Talk about what makes you happy. and content. This will inspire. And make you someone worth knowing.
12. Talk about what makes you sad, and what you are doing to fight through it. Part of marketing and sales is being relatable to people, finding something in common. Building rapport, and sharing this very human side of you does a lot to build trust.
13. Launch a podcast. Even you can have your own radio show. Having a podcast is a great way to share wonderful people with your audience. Having a podcast is also a great way to reach out and connect with people that are important to know.
14. Launch a video TV show. And don’t tell me that is hard. All it takes is buying a Flipcam, interview people on a regular basis, and publish on YouTube. Just be sure your show helps and educates people.
15. Be a curator. Become a recognized source of valuable content. Share articles on the social web. Provide lists of recommended books.
16. Write an article about how you overcame a major problem…on a project, in life. Demonstrating to the world that you can solve problems is a very marketable skill, and shows you as valuable.
17. Serve on the board of a non-profit. You’ll meet new people. And it will add some flavor to the story of you. And your network will like the taste.
18. Speak in public. I don’t mean keynote in front of 1,000 people. I am talking about volunteering to speak to a local business association. Teach them what you know.
19. Be a connector. When you make it a point to connect people who should know each other, you make a difference in their lives. Do it often enough, you have influence.
20. Stop worrying. The less you worry about building your personal brand, the stronger it will be. Nothing from 1-19 is for you. Those all exist to help others. This is what matters.
What do you think? What would you add?
[cartoon by hugh macleod]