5 Signs You Need To Improve Your Personal Brand

by Elizabeth Harmon
Posted: September 15, 2016

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Personal branding is increasingly important. Whether you’re looking for a new job opportunity, to be promoted in your existing company, to find new clients, or to be seen as an expert or role model within your industry, it’s pretty essential to get it right.
 

However, despite your best efforts, getting your personal brand right can be tricky. If you’re struggling to build your brand and get the results you want, then you may need to make some further changes. 

Here are 5 reasons why your branding may not be effective, plus some helpful advice on how to improve it.
 

1.    Your personal brand is inconsistent

Mark Zuckerberg in a blue facebook tshirt smiling in the crowd

It’s important to keep your brand consistent so people know who you are and what to expect. Every time you see a video of Mark Zuckerberg for example, he’s wearing the same grey T-shirt, jeans and hoody. 

You don’t suddenly start seeing him turning up to a press conference in a suit, as this is not his personal brand. The same rule applies to your personal brand.

How to fix this

Make sure you have a plan and stick to it. Work out how you want to be perceived and make sure everything follows this strategy. Any imagery you use should fit a theme, your tone of voice should be the same across online and offline mediums and even your attire should be consistent.

2.    You’re not using the right branding

Portrait collage of a range of people from males, females, hipsters, older gentlemen, business professionals, young entrepreneurs, students and class career women

If you want to be seen as fun and creative but your LinkedIn profile picture shows a picture of you wearing a plain black suit, then you may not be sending out the right impression to people. 

In the same way, if you want to be considered for a new job in a big corporation, your profile picture of you on a night out with your friends may also not be doing you any favours.

How to fix this

Think about what you want to achieve and how you need to portray yourself in order to reach that goal. Make sure the colours you use, imagery and tone of voice are all focused towards this. 

We’ve put together a personal branding checklist – use this to ensure you are covering everything.

3.    Your personal branding doesn’t stand out

Generic casual clothed interviews, all with similar styles of fashion, need to improve your personal brand guys?

If you don’t feel like your personal brand is helping you move closer towards your goals then it may be because you’re not standing out enough from the crowd.

How to fix this

It’s likely that 100’s of other people are trying to achieve the same thing as you and so it’s important your personal brand jumps out at businesses, recruiters and clients. 

Be unique, make sure your personality shines through and try to think outside of the box. 

To give yourself the edge, why not try our personal branding tool which will give you a personalised webpage to share with clients, colleagues, or prospective employers.

4.    You’re not developing your personal brand

A mother with her toddler who is using her laptop outside to improve her personal brand

It’s understandable that you don’t want to stand still. You therefore want your personal brand to grow over time, so you get more job opportunities or more industry recognition

However, if your personal brand has peaked and then lost momentum, you may need to make some changes.

How to fix this

You can’t just create a personal brand strategy and then not action it. You need to implement it and work at it continuously over time. 

For example, you can’t just write one blog post, you need to write a new blog post each week. At the same time, if you plan on speaking at conferences, you need to make sure you’re looking ahead for other opportunities coming up in the future. 

Keep setting targets and goals, then go out and achieve them!

5.    Your personal brand is mediocre or negative

Huge crowd of business people

It can be exciting building your personal brand, but at the same time, it can be easy to get carried away. You may find yourself trying out things that divide your followers, or saying yes to every opportunity that comes your way, which can lead to bad publicity.

How to fix this

No, all publicity isn’t always good publicity. It’s therefore important that you don’t just say yes to every opportunity. Be selective and make sure you only agree to things that fit well with your personal brand and can help you achieve your goals. Also make sure you think everything through first to ensure comments don’t backfire.

Personal branding can truly help you find your perfect job, move up within your industry, or simply just help you gain more confidence in what you are currently doing. 

Have you faced any roadblocks with your personal brand? We’d love to know how you fixed them. Leave us a reply below, or tweet us @OpenCollegesAU.
 

Want more advice on how to develop and strengthen your personal brand? Learn how to brand yourself effectively here.
 

 

Or get your own personal copy! Download the Open Colleges Complete Guide to Personal Branding eBook.

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Elizabeth Harmon

Elizabeth Harmon

is a Social Media Consultant with a number of years of experience in the field. She has worked with a growing list of clients around the world, helping to build successful social media strategies, create effective content and much more. She is a writer and journalist for the Open Colleges Careers Blog.

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