Personal branding is traditionally defined as (thanks Wiki) the process where people and their careers are marked as brands. The personal branding concept suggests that success comes from self-packaging (or self-marketing). The process is further defined as the creation (and then communication) of an asset that pertains to a particular person or individual; this includes but is not limited to there thinking, teachings, skill, areas of knowledge or expertise and physical appearance (the overall embodiment) leading to a uniquely distinguishable, and ideally memorable, impression. Supposedly the term and concept of Personal Branding was first used and discussed in a 1997 article by Tom Peters, The Brand Called You.
This is a great read (only dated by the brand examples used…General Motors, Phillip Morris, etc.)
“It’s time for me — and you — to take a lesson from the big brands, a lesson that’s true for anyone who’s interested in what it takes to stand out and prosper in the new world of work.
Regardless of age, regardless of position, regardless of the business we happen to be in, all of us need to understand the importance of branding. We are CEOs of our own companies: Me Inc. To be in business today, our most important job is to be head marketer for the brand called You.”
A more modern definition is how 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.
Now that we are clear on what Personal Branding is, let me ask you a question… What is brand YOU telling people about what you have to offer?