Personal branding is extremely powerful. In fact, it’s how I was able to build and scale my first marketing agency. I didn’t have funding. I didn’t want to bring on investors and give up equity or take on traditional debt, so I leveraged my personal brand and bootstrapped the company. Over the years the company pivoted a couple of times as it grew and today, after another pivot and complete re-brand and re-name, Uber Brands is a brand development agency that build e-commerce brands in the health, beauty, fitness and lifestyle industries.
There is no way the company would be what it is today if I hadn’t put so much focus on building my personal brand in the early days.
If you haven’t allocated the time and energy to build your personal brand, I highly suggest you commit now, and prioritize it. The impact it can have on your business is tremendous. Here are ten effective ways you can help take your personal branding to the next level this year.
1. Start a daily vlog.
I have plans to kick off a daily vlog this year, and it’s something I am very excited about. My plan is to document the process of building new consumer brands via my company, and just the daily ins and outs of being an entrepreneur. It’s going to be a major commitment, as filming all day and then editing at night is going to consume a lot of my time and energy.
There are many entrepreneurs that have used vlogs to grow their personal brand, which then transitions over to the companies they are involved with. A great example is Christian Guzman. You can check out his YouTube channel here. He owns the fitness apparel company ALPHALETE, a gym and 3D Energy, an energy drink brand. A daily vlog gives you a platform to build a very loyal and engaged following.
2. Start a weekly podcast.
I am listening to more podcast content now than I ever have. Many entrepreneurs have built huge podcast audiences, and that carried over to their social media profiles, which really grew their personal brands. It’s something I want to do myself actually, and I have plans for a podcast room in our new office.
Podcasts give you a way to highlight and share your expertise and knowledge, and leveraging that to attract an audience. The great thing about podcasts are the fact that they are portable content and can be consumed during downtime, like when driving to work or while doing cardio at the gym.
The cost to get started and push out content is low and there are several ways to distribute your podcast — Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, SoundCloud, Overcast, iHeart Radio, Spotify, Google Play, TuneIn, Acast, Castbox, Otto Radio and Google Home.
3. Promote all of your content across Outbrain and Taboola.
This is a strategy I have used a lot in the past, since these platforms launched. They give you the ability to distribute your content across popular channels to get it immediate views. The views and social shares you collect using this strategy also act as social proof, which can directly impact your conversions.
Creating content is a must-do, but it’s only going to be effective if people are reading and engaging with it. One of the easiest ways to get more people to read your content is to amplify it by using a discovery channel, like Taboola and Outbrain. You are only charged when someone clicks-through and the initial cost is minimal as there isn’t a huge minimum spend requirement.
4. Network at big industry events.
To be honest, networking is the only reason I attend conferences. If I attend a conference, I’m doing it because of networking opportunities and not necessarily the speakers or sessions. Why? Well most events will make the actual speaker content available via video after the event, so there isn’t a need to attend in person just to consume that content. But the networking opportunities are priceless, and I have gone to conferences in the past and skipped the actual event, focused only on networking opportunities.
Make sure you identify your targets before the event and try to set up times to meet in advance.
5. Create a newsletter and send it out weekly.
I have always sent out a weekly newsletter, and now that my company doesn’t sell any services B2B, the new newsletter is a bit more generic and simply just my views on branding as well as sharing some interesting news and events from the world of e-commerce.
Don’t always think of a newsletter as a selling tool. Think of it more of a personal branding tool. Our new newsletter isn’t going to be responsible for any revenue. It’s simply for me to connect with those interested in what I am doing. Again, it’s done with personal branding in mind.
6. Start blogging on LinkedIn.
I have seen many entrepreneurs crush it on LinkedIn. High quality long-form content can perform great, growing your LinkedIn following, which you can then introduce to other social platforms, content and websites.
LinkedIn’s user base has always been large, but now its users are engaging with content more than they did previously.
Commit to publishing long-form content exclusively for LinkedIn. Then, convert comments into conversations, engaging followers and establishing yourself as a thought-leader.
7. Become an active participant on Twitter chats.
Twitter was great back in he day, and the chats that took place on the platform — especially in the online marketing industry — provided a lot of value. While activity on Twitter is slightly lower these days, there are still a lot of active chats and finding the ones that relate to your industry can still be beneficial.
Twitter chats are typically weekly events that last for 15 to 45 minutes, and feature a hashtag that identifies it, which is how participants engage with the discussion. Answering questions and providing value can really help boost your personal brand.
8. Spend $5/day on Facebook ads promoting yourself.
Most entrepreneurs run Facebook ad campaigns for their business, but they don’t think of running ads to promote their personal brand.
Facebook gives you the ability to place yourself in front of the specific audience you want to attract and connect with. Start a public page in order to have a personal brand on Facebook that is separate from your personal profile and run a campaign targeting your target audience and set your budget to $5 per day. You will grow your personal brand on Facebook and push traffic to your website for under than $150 a month. This is an effective and affordable option.