Monthly Archives: September 2012

How to BOOST Online Visibility of your Personal Brand in Social Media

If you are out there doing your DO; Are you Doing your DO online as well??

When someone Googles you, Do you Exist in the Google-God’s Directory?

If you do exist, how kind is the all knowing Google-God about your Personal (Brand) Reputation?

Questions! Questions! They bother even more when we are at a loss of an Answer.

But seriously, If you have a NO or an un-satisfactory answer to any of the above, my dear friend, it’s time to hail the mighty sword (your tablet/your netbook/your laptop) and prepare to conquer the Social Media Kingdom with your humble, yet Invincible Personal Brand.

If you are new to the concept of Personal Branding then this is THE article for you, as I will now explain how to Brand Yourself across different Social Media Platforms to boost your Online Visibility; and if you already have been a Socially Savvy Smarty, then it’s time for you to step up in the journey of Personal Branding and you may want to work with a Personal Brand Strategist who will empower you to build an ICONIC Personal Brand both online & offline.

I have also curated a Brilliant Infographic as you see below that highlights the 6 different Social Media Goliaths that you MUST conquer with the Power of your Personal Brand.

So now you know why & where you MUST be Socially Branded! Now comes the Best part: How TO?

Twitter: Twitter is the King of Social Media-in my opinion at least.

  1. Twitter will empower you with an online stage with a Global Audience to showcase your Thought Leadership. Use the Generous Space of 160 characters to Brand your twitter Profile with a Powerful and Relevant Bio. When I say Relevant, I mean Honest yet Interesting.
  2. Brand your Twitter handle with an Identity that best represents YOU: Your Name or your Branded Name-if any different!
  3. You may also add links to your Personal Blog/Website to draw traffic for Business
  4. Using your Name in the Bio-Space, is a brilliant strategy for DIY SEO.
  5. Get a Brandtastic Headshot for your Twitter profile; one that is TOTALLY on-brand

Facebook: If Twitter is the King; Facebook is the undisputed Queen of the Social Media; ruling the Hearts worlwide

  1. Claim a Vanity URL for your Own as well as Business Page, which looks like: facebook.com/username. Click here to check out my Branded Facebook Fan Page!
  2. For your Personal Profile, give your it a Privacy Makeover by changing who can see what section of your Profile; this helps you project the desired Brand to different groups of audience
  3. Do mention your Professional details in the about section, as what you do is equally important as the USP of your Unique Identity
  4. Upload a cover picture that accentuates the UNIQUE essence of the Personal Brand’s SOUL; My Tip: Let the SOUL of your Brand come alive on your home page
  5. Maintain a strategic healthy balance between the fun-side and professional side of life on Facebook as you don’t want to come across as a Geek all the time!
  6. Linking your Pinterest account with your Facebook Account will ensure you keep your network entertained and enriched all the time!
  7. Most importantly, do not share pictures of yourself that would compromise your Personal Reputation either now or 10 years down the line. Be Sensible today, rather than being Sorry tomorrow!

LinkedIn: Well, for me LinkedIn is the Young Prince of Social Media who is soon to be the King!

LinkedIn enables you to present your Best Professional Brand to the corporate world, to those who really matter! This is in fact the first platform where you should BRAND YOURSELF. You can check out my detailed post on How to Brand Yourself on LinkedIn here.

Google plus: Google Plus is like the Court Minister of the Social Media world, without whom we would probably not have such access to the thriving kingdom of Social Media.

  1. Getting your Google Profile is like the first step to SEO Nirvana; so get your Google Quotient perfect by claiming your profile today.
  2. Use the Google cover picture wisely, by Branding your Punch-line alongside your headshot for maximum impact and let your true Brand Shine-on!
  3. Create a Google Page for your Business under your Profile for a Double SEO treat!
  4. Use Google Hangouts to interact with your Brand Community on a regular basis; Video is the FUTURE of building a powerful Personal Brand Reputation.
  5. For now, you may also claim your username or vanity URL using http://gplus.to until Google blesses us mortals with an in-house facility to do so

Klout: Klout in my belief is the Court Gossip Monger, who is the indispensible informant to know who is worth what in the Social Media Kingdom!

  1. Get yourself on Klout today, either with Facebook or Twitter, to discover how much clout you have in the Online world!
  2. Connect all your Social Media activity to Klout for best results

About.Me: About Me is like your Court Confidant who will share with the world, only your Best!

  1. Get your Branded Vanity URL on About.Me before it’s gone!
  2. This can serve as your Personal Website in case you do not have one, so design it well
  3. Customize the look and feel of your home page with the colors that best represent the Brand YOU.
  4. Fill it up with a Brandtastic Bio that makes the reader get in touch with you for reasons best for business!
  5. Connect it with your Social Media Presence to provide a one-stop shop for your entire digital footprint
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How to Brand Your Name and Your Game

In my second Guest Post of the Season, I am thrilled to welcome, Paolo Feroleto to the Premier Personal Branding Blog of India. I have known Paolo for a brief period, but I have been hugely inspired by the creative brilliance that he exudes, and the Brandtastic Insights he brings to the world of Branding. I now present Paolo to you, who is here to enrich you with his 5 Tips on How to Brand Your Name & Your Game, whether you are a seasoned Brand or the Flavour of the Season! All you Entrepreneurs, sit up and take notice, these are the 5 KEY Elements of your Brand-Your Dream Company.

Paolo Feroleto

Paolo Feroleto is the Chief Creative Officer of Creative Discovery in the United Kingdom, where he pioneers in offering experiential creative workshops for both Corporates as well as Educational Sectors; which empower individuals to discover their hidden creative potential and channel it to create a compelling personal & professional identity that breaks the clutter. Paolo is a top-notch designer with over 14 years of experience, of working across mixed disciplines including Graphic, Retail & Interior Design in the U.K. as well as across the Globe. His portfolio of work in Branding, Literature, Exhibits, Visual Merchandizing & Interior Design can be enjoyed at www.four-design.co.uk

The Power of Branding

Creating a strong brand is one of the many challenges facing entrepreneurs and start up businesses, and it is also a key element within the business plan. So it is important to implement a brand strategy that is focused on the long-term success of your company.

Many business owners spend little time focusing on a brand strategy as they may feel other areas of their company are more important. Making time to understand how branding can work for your company and developing a strong presence in your prospective market is one of the most important decisions business owners will make.

Branding is THE most powerful tool of communication and should be treated as such. Getting the design of your brand right is crucial in delivering a strong message to your target audience.

1. Defining Your BrandThere are many elements to consider when creating your brand, for example:

  •   What’s your USP (Unique Selling Point)
  •   How do you stand out from your competitors?
  •   What is the personality of your brand?
  •   What is your vision for your business?
  •   What are your values?

How do you incorporate these answers to produce a visual representation of your brand through a logo? The main points to consider are:

2. The Name: Choosing a strong name is fundamental to a brand’s success. Keep it short and punchy where possible, make it memorable and contemporary yet with an eye on the future. Your brand name and identity should be just as strong over a long period which gives you ample time to generate brand awareness and a solid foundation for your business.

3. The Design: It is essential that you employ an experienced designer with proven expertise in company branding and understands visual impact on consumer perceptions to work with you on developing your brand. The designer will help with choosing typefaces, colours and graphic elements that can be put together to generate a strong balanced brand.

4. The Strapline: Your slogan that accompanies your logo design is a statement that describes what your brand is all about. For a slogan to be effective, it’s important that it doesn’t carry a confusing message and is clear and concise. Some good examples of this are, Nokia: “Connecting People” and Guinness: “Pure Genius”.

5.  Brand Awareness: Your prospective clients and customers should be able to recognise your brand through many areas of media, from printed advertisements and online through your website and social media marketing campaigns. Look to create a brand that has distinctive design elements which are instantly recognisable. For example, Nike and Apple have created strong brand awareness through using just the shape of the ‘Tick’ and the ‘Apple’ without the need to have the word placed underneath. Companies such as Nike and Apple have generated brand awareness over many years through successful advertising campaigns and it is only recently that they used the graphic elements of their logo without the main name.

If you would like to know more about Branding and how your company could benefit from a branding exercise, contact: paolo@four-design.co.uk

To Brand ME or not to Brand ME???

If Life was a Supermarket what Brand of Chocolate do you think you would be?

Rather if Life was a Mall, what Brand of Shoes would you be?

Even better, if Life was a Race, what Brand of Car would you be?

Answer each of these questions, and answer once again, WHY?

The BIG Q

 

Now the Most important Question, have you ever wondered to Yourself:

‘To Brand ME or not to Brand ME?’

Seldom, people fail to realize, that indeed this is a moot question; and yet they ponder over it for the best years of their Life, sometimes, till it too late to take the leap of faith.

You, are of course, a Human being not some pretty packaged candy bar being sold for a dime a dozen in your local super market; or a pair of gorgeous stilettos being envied by all-but who flaunts them; or a Fantastic set of four wheels that take your life from 0 to 100 in less than 5! You are not a commodity, or a product or a service by any means which can be defined and dealt with. The conventional rules of 4Ps of Marketing do not apply to YOU, as You are Unique and Rare, as Rare as you could possibly be.

But You do have one thing that is noteworthy of all these aforementioned categories of items I mentioned: REPUTATION. You as a Professional, and more importantly a Human, have Reputation to Protect, Nurture & Build; just like any of the Brands of Candies or Shoes or Cars. Each of these products are valued and consumed only and only for the Reputation they have built & sustained in the Industry over their life-cycle; which now puts them on the top of your preference List.  It is this Reputation that distinguishes You from the rest of your colleagues and competition. It is this Reputation that attracts the Best of the opportunities in Life, your way. Whether it’s the Business battlefield your ascents up the Corporate Ladder. Your Reputation precedes you, and defines your Success Story.

Now, Now, if you do have a reputation, than Life has just got a LOT simpler for you. You have now, this very moment realized that YOU are a BRAND; with a Reputation to Protect, Nurture & Build. Congratulations!!!

So, I am a Brand: What Next?

So now, that you know you are a Brand, what do you intend to do with it? You have three options:

  1. Not care, and not do anything about it: Life was good even before the dawn of this realization, and will be after.
  2. Be wary and get burdened: Now, one more thing to do in an already super busy life; and you may have no clue on what to do, if people are going to start perceiving me as a Brand- so you get flustered and fearful.
  3. Be excited and enthusiastic:  Life could reveal a better truth to you! This is the exact kind of motivation you needed to buckle up and take charge of your Career, and the best way to do it is with a little professional consultation to make the best of the Brand YOU.

What does Brand ME Need?

Your Personal Brand is nothing but the Reputation that you carry in the hearts & minds of your Brand Community-which comprises of ALL the People you know.

Your Brand= Your Reputation (in the World)

If it sounds intimidating, worry not, I am now going to tell you the exact course of action you need to adopt to Protect, Nurture & Build the Brand YOU.

Protect: What are you trying to Protect? Your Reputation, right? But unless you really know what your Reputation is RIGHT NOW, How do you plan to Protect it?

Step 1: Discover your Personal Brand Reputation, with a Personal Brand Assessment Tool, to know what the World thinks of your Brand before you start building it. You need to know where you are before you begin your Journey, right?

Step 2: Once, you are well-aware of your current Brand Reputation in the Industry; you must now overcome any discrepancies in your perceived Self-Reputation and the one that you have discovered from the external feedback about your Brand. You need to formulate a sound strategy to minimize the variance between these two, with the help of a Professional Personal Brand Strategist.

These 2 steps will ensure that you are now doing all that is required to Protect your Reputation in the Industry.

Nurture: The Step 2 of the Protect phase is only the beginning of caring for your Reputation. Now, it is vital for you to nurture your Personal Reputation to grow it, the way you desire it to shape up.

Step 1: This is the most exciting step of your Personal Branding process, as you now indulge into introspection about what makes you: YOU. You discover, the major driver and boosters of your Brand like your Passions, Values, Visions, Goals, Strengths, Motivated Skills, to name a few. This is complemented with a detailed analysis of the existing Brand Community that you exist in and these things fuel the next step of unearthing your Uniqueness!

Step 2: You now discover your Unique Value Proposition that is the SOUL of your Personal Brand, which differentiates you from the world, and is the instrumental factor in building your Brand.

Build: This is the master-plan of the Brand YOU; which dictates on how you will Talk your Brand & Walk your Brand.

With the aid of your Strategist, you will formulate a customized Brand Action Plan, to Communicate (Talk your Brand) & Live (Walk your Brand), so as to maintain the 3C’s of your Brand: Clarity, Constancy & Consistency, in your Brand Experience.

Use these 3 Simple Steps to start working on building the Reputation of the Brand YOU; and Remember, it is not what you say your Brand is; it is what your Reputation says it is.