A lot of people could easily mistake personal branding as a form of commercialized ego-tripping that permits you to focus on yourself, hyper-inflate your sense of self-worth and overestimate your abilities. But it’s not. In fact, it is a holistic marketing process that has less to do with you and more about the value you can give others.
Below are four misconceptions many professionals, including artists and creative professionals, have about their personal brands.
It’s NOT All About You
Yes it maybe personal but it’s not just about the person. Your personal brand is not your ego and it’s definitely not a commercial interpretation of your like and dislikes. It is first and foremost about the promise you can give to the market or audience you’re tapping and your capacity to fulfill that promise in a way that will add value to the community. Though your brand obviously is a representation of many things “you”, at the end of the day, you’ll realize it’s more about what you can do for “them.”
It’s NOT Just About Your Product or Service
Your personal brand goes beyond a simple inventory of your skills and abilities. It is about understanding how those skills and abilities can positively influence a person or organization to achieve his/her/their goals. Your personal brand is a determinant of what your products or service should be, and not the other way around.
It’s NOT About How Good You Are
Though it would definitely help if you have outstanding credentials, your personal brand is not about your resume or accomplishments. It’s not about how many people think you’re amazing or how well your undergrad professor or supervisor adores your work. Your personal brand is about your impact – how your presence or involvement in a particular situation, event or circumstance has enhanced the overall result.
It’s NOT About How Important You Are
And no, a personal brand rarely has anything to do with your standing in the community. An individual who has effectively determined his/her personal brand recognizes that it is and will always be a question of impact. He/she will ask “How did I make this situation better?”, “How did I expand the knowledge pool in this niche/industry/market?”, “How did I make this craft or profession more respectable, interesting and marketable to the general public?”
Building a personal brand is an arduous, detailed, and time-consuming process. Despite the wealth of literature it is not even an exact science. But one thing is for sure, the most effective personal brands has less to do with the one who holds such position in the mind, but more with what that person can do to positively influence the minds, actions and results of those around him.