As more and more people continue to use laptops, smartphones, and other mobile devices to stay constantly connected to the web, it’s becoming equally important for businesses to spend time developing a strong presence online in order to effectively connect with potential customers. In this day and age, it’s not uncommon for consumers to spend a good amount of time researching a company on Facebook, Google, Yelp, and other social media before making any final purchasing decisions.
Most businesses and brands understand this truth and have taken the time to invest in strategies that can help them strengthen their online presence and brand reputation in order to connect with more prospects and customers. In addition, a growing number of CEOs, business owners, and other professionals have started actively developing their own personal brand online as a way to connect with more prospects and customers. So what is a personal brand?
What Is a Personal Brand?
Author and marketing expert Dan Schawbel defines personal branding as:
“The process by which individuals and entrepreneurs differentiate themselves and stand out from a crowd by identifying and articulating their unique value proposition, whether professional or personal, and then leveraging it across platforms with a consistent message and image to achieve a specific goal. In this way, individuals can enhance their recognition as experts in their field, establish reputation and credibility, advance their careers, and build self-confidence.”
Who Has a Personal Brand?
You might not realize it or want to admit it, but you have a personal brand. We all do. Have you ever Googled yourself or someone else? If the answer is yes, then you already support the idea of personal brands. We all use the Internet as a tool to find out more information about the people we meet and interact with in daily life. As a result, online reputation management is becoming increasingly important for individuals trying to get a job, get a promotion, sell a product, land a new customer, etc. Do you know what information people are finding about you when they Google your name? Will the information they find about you have a positive or negative impact on your sales, business, or career goals?
Each day more and more businesses are creating Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, YouTube channels, Yelp profiles, blogs, etc. in order to interact with their target audience and current base of customers. This trend has fundamentally changed the way consumers interact with and learn more about businesses. Online consumers now expect companies online to be transparent, helpful, genuine, and invested in top-notch customer service. Many also expect the same from CEOs, salespeople, and other business professionals. If you’re interested in differentiating from competition and connecting with more prospects online, it might be time to consider implementing some basic personal branding strategies.
Why You Should Purchase YourName.com
One simple way you can start strengthening your personal brand online is to purchase a domain name and launch a website and/or blog for yourself. We recommend searching to find out if YourName.com is available. If it is available, purchase the domain and start thinking about what you want people to find when they visit the site. It’s likely that it won’t take long for your new domain to start showing up on the first page of results when people Google your name. What information do you want to present to people when they land on your site? Do you want them to find contact information for you? A short biography or explanation of what you do? Links to your business website or products? A blog that offers helpful industry-related information? These are questions that you should think about when developing your personal brand website.
The Benefits of Having a Personal Brand Website
There are a number of benefits associated with having a website for your personal brand. First and foremost, it gives you the ability to actively maintain and strengthen your online reputation. You might not have complete control of what people have said or are saying about you on Facebook, Twitter, or other websites, but you do have complete control when it comes to your own website. You can use your personal brand website to proactively manage the information that exists online about you.
Your personal brand website can help you become more transparent, helpful, and genuine. It can show consumers that you’re a real person that they can reach out to if they have questions, concerns, or praise about your products or business. As mentioned above, online consumers expect top-notch customer service. They need to know that you—not just your business—are genuinely interested in helping them.
Your personal brand website can also help you establish credibility in your industry. By taking time to write about industry-related topics and trends, share stories about yourself and your business, and offer other free valuable information on your blog, you can start effectively leveraging yourself as an influencer in your industry.
What Should You Include on Your Personal Brand Website?
The possibilities are seemingly endless, but we do have a few recommendations to help get you started. Your personal brand website should have a blog. Blogging is a great way to help prospective customers understand who you are, what you do, what you know, how you can help, and why they should care. Your personal brand website should also have links to your personal social accounts. If you’re not comfortable including them just yet, consider at least linking to your business social accounts. Your site should also include a lot of visuals (photo and video). It can also have links to your business website or product pages—but don’t present this in a way that might appear too spammy to visitors. The point of your personal brand website is not to sell products. The point is to help people get to know you better. Finally, your personal brand website should include an About page, or at the very least, a short bio for yourself.
Do you have a website for your personal brand? If so, leave a comment below explaining why you decided to launch it.