If you asked me about “personal branding” two weeks ago this would have been me:
But now, thanks to the wonders of iTunes University (yes the one on your iPhone!) I am learning all about it in a course designed for high school students. The course is called Brand ME. Of course you could just join me in the course if you have an Apple device. For those using Android (ek kannie😑) you can learn along with me here and eventually through my e-book( I know! Exciting, right?)
From the course notes: “Personal branding sets the stage for being able to get in touch with one’s identity. Asking students to look inward and reflect on who they are and who they want to be, creates an opportunity to see themselves in new and meaningful ways. As they begin the journey of self discovery, we can guide them through the process of creating a personal brand and brand awareness embedded in rich lessons of digital (sic)citizenship.”
I’ve started the course and, together with some books, bloggers on Pinterest and a network of female entrepreneurs,I am learning a lot about Personal Branding.
Starting with this post, I’ll share the secrets I’m learning in fortnightly Personal Branding posts, until I’ve completed the course. In fact, I’ll share all the assignments, lecture notes and reading material so YOU can learn how to brand yourself successfully as well! I’m super excited to learn alongside all of you.
So what is Personal Branding and why am I getting serious about this now?
According to the gods of Wikipedia:
Personal branding is the practice of people marketing themselves and their careers as brands. … Personal branding is essentially the ongoing process of establishing a prescribed image or impression in the mind of others about an individual, group, or organization.
In plain English, it’s the IRL version of your CV. Nowadays, you are the walking, talking embodiment of all you represent.
Think Coca Cola. What comes to mind? The red and white logo? The tag line? What about Nike? Adidas? Chanel? See where I’m going here? These are companies that have their company brands on lockdown.
They’re instantly identifiable, easy to remember and more importantly, their message is tied to their brand. What says more about class and elegance than Chanel?
What’s it got to do with blogging and business?
As a blogger and entrepreneur I want to become synonymous with something. What that is exactly is what I’m trying to figure out through this course and the personal and professional development I’m doing. I’ve even contacted a career coach to help through the process. (More on that next Wednesday.)
As I’ve mentioned before I don’t really blog for the money. It’s a side hustle for me. But as I head into the fifth month, I’m becoming more known as Desert Missus rather than my alter ego, Karin. In fact, I ran into a fan at the mall the other day and we chatted for a while. She liked my little quirks ( how I sign off each post), my willingness to share every single detail of my life ( 😬) but most of all she enjoyed my company online.
I realized I had a brand that was recognizable, albeit just to a few people in the blogosphere, and if I wanted to make friends and influence people( in the best possible way of course!) I had to get real about who I am online and what I do. If I was to stay true to my message ( not my niche) I would have to sharpen my brand identity, which being entirely me, is therefore my personal brand. My brand should be identifiable no matter which niche I appear in.
As part of that I had to understand more of what it meant to brand myself, erm, personally.
The course outline
- What is Personal Branding?
- Creating a Brand Statement
- Design a Brand logo
- Sharing your Personal Brand
- Personal Artifact
- What’s in your name?
- Music of your life
- Your Resume
- Social media and you
I’ll do an hour or two every week and share all in a blogpost. First off, journaling on Evernote or in an actual real life journal is a prerequisite. I’ve gotten some nice notebooks but I’ve also downloaded Evernote. You should do this too. Pronto!
Of course I’m not limited to just iTunes but am reading blogs, listening to podcasts and reading books on the subject. I’m not about to hit you with every single detail of it, but I am compiling it all into an e- book that should walk you through the process.
If like me you’re looking to get serious about personal branding, watch out for my e-book after I’ve completed the course. It’ll have all I’ve learned and more in it.
So what are you waiting for? Let’s get started. My first post will be due next Wednesday and then every two weeks after that. Let me know why you’d be interested in learning more about Personal Branding in the comments section.
Until next I blog,