October 11, 2013
We all understand that building your practice brand is important, but have you considered that building your personal brand may be valuable as well? And have you considered that you should begin building your personal brand now? Your personal brand is what people (specifically your target employers, employees, colleagues, business partners, community leaders, and patients) will learn about you when they search for your name online.
Now more than ever, personal branding is important to most professionals. Aside from traditional protocol, including verifying credentials and letters of recommendation, you can be almost certain that your future employer, bank loan officer, partners, and patients are going to “Google” you! So be proactive now to shape perception by building your personal brand.
What is a brand? Your brand is simply what people (most importantly your target) know about you. Here are 3 brand building questions: What does your target know about you? What is your personal brand “equity” (value)? Is your brand identity a proper reflection of what you want to represent? What will show up if someone searches for you? Your value in Google search engines is referred to as your “Google quotient”. A good way to check your quotient is to refresh your browser and then type your name in quotes into Google. Can you find you? If not, I recommend that you begin building your brand intentionally.
If your name does appear, take a good look at what comes up and ask yourself – Is your brand identity a proper reflection of what you want to present about yourself? You don’t want inappropriate pictures on social media or any kind of negative content associated with your name. I highly recommend that graduate and undergraduate students begin their own brand building with social media immediately. The goal of brand building in social media is to be recognized, to shape perception, and to increase networking and communication.
Look for Part II of this series next week to learn ways to start building your brand with social media!