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The Beginner’s Guide to Personal Branding for Career Success

Most would agree that figuring out how to stand out in a sea of qualified job

candidates, how to get invited to more interviews, and how to inspire hiring managers

to email that coveted offer letter can sometimes be challenging.

If you’ve been on the job hunt for some time, but aren’t having much success; or if you’ve never asked yourself what personal branding is, much less created a personal branding strategy for yourself; this lack of strong personal branding is more than likely the reason you are still struggling and not experiencing success.

What exactly is personal branding?

Think of it this way, it’s the “Why me?” in the “Hire me!” equation. Meaning you are

incredibly clear on why you’re the best candidate and should be hired for the job.

When you make the important decision to focus on personal branding, you begin to

dig deep, recognize what makes you unique, assess your gifts and talents - not just

your skills and experience - and create a new sense of confidence when networking

and interviewing. You’re much more clear on your “Why me?” - and being super

clear on your “Why me?” makes you conscious of your distinct differences and this

will definitely help you stand out.

What types of things should be included in a strong personal branding strategy?

● A high quality, professionally written resume that shines the best light on you

● A personal portfolio website with the best examples of your work and reflects the aspects

of your personality that make you uniquely you

● An engaging executive biography and LinkedIn profile crafted by a skilled career expert, telling your story

● Social media posts showcasing your work, special projects, and volunteer roles

● Articles and blog posts that build your reputation as a thought leader in your field

● Strong interview skills that clearly show hiring professionals what you bring to the table

How do I figure out what my personal branding for career success is?

Now that you have an idea about the elements of a strong personal brand, let's look at some of the questions you need to ask yourself first to create the foundation for strong personal branding for career success:

● What are my goals?

● Why am I branding myself?

● What is my why?

● Who is my target audience?

● Who do I need to know to reach my goals?

● What are some qualities of mine that make me stand out from my peers?

● In what ways do I create value?

● What values make me who I am?

● What is my end goal career-wise?

● Who is in my network?

● What excites me?

● What do I do better than anyone else?

Take some time to sit down, get still, and really dig deep with these questions. More than likely, never diving into your “Why me?” is what is standing between you and the work culture you dreamed of, the salary you deserve, and a satisfying and fulfilling career. And remember, your personal brand, when done right, will express the unique combination of skills, talents, personality, and experiences that make you who you are. It is important to purposefully present yourself to the world. Effective personal branding will not only differentiate you from the pack but allow the prospective employers you align with to spot you more easily in the crowd.

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