They are all killer personal brand examples...
While many equate strong personal branding only to powerful leadership, there's a lot more that goes into crafting a personal brand statement. In business, your personal brand needs to leave a lasting impression or you risk being ignored. This can be the result of your voice, off-the-wall persona, whacky facial hair, or any other number of unique things.
Establishing a personal brand carries even more weight when you’re responsible for developing and leading others. When you have a team looking up to you for guidance and instruction, it’s important to remain consistent in the way you lead. The only way to establish yourself as a leader is to identify your core values and the impression you want to leave.
But even if you don’t have a team of direct reports, we are all leaders who come from different walks of life with varied experiences that shape our core values. Great leaders often align their leadership values with personal beliefs and ethics of their own. Personal values adopted as professional values translate into our core beliefs that are easy to visibly act on every day in our personal and professional lives.
Click "READ MORE" to discover the 29 steps and examples to creating a successful personal brand.
Skip Right to a Specific Section by Clicking One of These Links
What is Personal Branding?
- What is your trademark (something that sets you apart)?
- What type of impact do you want to make?
- How do you want to be recognized and what do you want to be remembered for?
Matt Sweetwood, branding expert, defines personal branding as:
But it must be memorable to stand out in this cluttered media world.
A strong personal brand is so much more than a memorable name or product. It's an extension of yourself that lingers even long after that person has left your website, book, show, or other piece of content. It is arguably even more important than a business' brand, as businesses may come and go, but your personal brand is yours forever.
As you go down the path of creating, perfecting, and evolving your personal brand, be mindful of every action and choice you make. Unlike a business, your personal brand doesn't have hours of operation, it simply is 24/7/365. While Sheryl Sandberg argues that there is no such thing as a personal brand but only business brands, it's hard to square that with how many unknown people have gained national or international celebrity status though the power of digital media.
While it takes a ton of hard work and decades to build your personal brand, it can be lost in an instant with a misstep or two if you are not careful. Build and guard your reputation, and the end result is absolutely worth it.
9 Killer Personal Brand Statement Examples
Crafting a few sentences that distill your career essence and aspirations into something memorable will help you go a long way towards cutting through the noise in the world as well as help you home in on what you are best at.
Note that many of these vary in tone and length, giving the statements even more of a personal touch. There are no hard and fast rules about what a personal brand statement must be, but it’s best to be as specific as possible but not be too verbose.
I enjoy building and strengthening strategic alliances. My passion is to guide nonprofits, specifically those focused on youth empowerment, to achieve new heights."
My method marries the sublime with the systematic — allowing for creativity and change with a strong focus on foundation and implementation."
7. Sheri K. Czar
In one case, I led a company through unparalleled growth and success, increasing revenue from $30 million to $60 million. In another, I managed significant software changeover/upgrade for more accurate and timely processing of accounting functions, inventory reports, and financial statements."
Led strategic and operational breakthroughs in proactive health informatics and communications technologies, evidence-based prevention and care management products, and cost-effective healthcare delivery systems. Pioneer in wellness and prevention programs, disease management and population health."
12 Delightful Personal Brand Examples
These 12 influencers listed below come from various backgrounds but all share one common theme: they have established a unique identity that separates them from their competition. As a result, they're quickly designated as thought leaders within their respective industries.
A pioneer in the field, Rand’s personal brand got strapped to a rocket when he started his company, Moz, in 2004. This quickly turned into a massive digital marketing think tank, giving Rand the opportunity to foster a community and share his voice and knowledge. He now has an SEO empire with podcasts and weekly videos that deliver his knowledge and thought leadership to the SEO world.
What made this all possible? His calm demeanor, willingness to help, and desire to make the SEO world a better place.
His unforgettable facial hair is also a plus.
By sixth grade he was going door-to-door, selling a homemade Christmas album. In 2011, he was signed to Ellen DeGeneres' label, eleveneleven. Four years later, he released his multi-platinum hit, "Marvin Gaye."
In the oft-controversial world of music, Charlie Puth has crafted his image as a fun, rather innocent singer with a clean past. You sing it, Charlie.
Along with his unique voice, he often has unique, sometimes borderline-counterintuitive ideas that actually work. Lastly, he's done an incredible job marketing himself. He has a personal site, multiple companies, and does the Marketing School podcast with Eric Siu.
None of this would have happened if it weren't for his desire to learn, share, and get his hands dirty. He took a gamble and dove headfirst into the blogging world, and it paid off. This brazen willingness to tackle problems head on is exactly what makes him a great teacher, and as a result, a great leader.
She established her place as a thought leader by offering bold and useful advice on writing and creating great content which lead to numerous best-selling books. She's also the founder of the incredibly successful site, MarketingProfs. She now has a podcast, blog, and continues to create content across numerous additional channels.
Noticing a theme here? All of these leaders dabble in numerous channels and projects with a focus on the long-term, maximizing their brand exposure.
With the loss of hair on his head, it has migrated south, creating a fine beard.
She managed to find success for several reasons, but first and foremost, she found it by connecting with her younger audience and being relatable. Her sincere demeanor is obvious in everything she does, and her audience can't get enough of it.
From the founding and eventual sale of his first company, Yoyodyne, in 1998, to being named Yahoo's VP of direct marketing, to having a blog named "Time's" Top 25 blog in 2009, Seth Godin has always succeeded at his ventures. Seth's to-the-point tone and willingness to share free advice have made him a staple in the online world today.
In all reality, Mike Rowe, an Eagle Scout, is simply a great actor who found his niche: being the champion of blue collar and trade work. His down-to-Earth attitude and ability to relate to the everyday American, has helped him become the massively successful personality he is today.
While originally famous for the Discovery channel's "Dirty Jobs," he leads the renowned podcast, "The Way I Heard It," and CNN's "Somebody's Gotta Do It."
Anna Wintour has established herself and "Vogue" as the pinnacle of the fashion world for more than two decades now, by never hesitating to say or do what she wants to do. While this has also led to her being viewed as a divisive figure by some, she is nonetheless a prime
Martha's cheerful personality has made her a fixture in homes for decades, even though many have accused her of being a control freak behind the scenes. Perhaps, her attention to detail is part of what fueled her rise to stardom. In recent years she's gone as far as reinventing her brand, creating "Martha & Snoop's Potluck Dinner Party" on VH1.
8 Solid Steps to Building a Personal Brand
Building a personal brand is the result of intentional, hard work done consistently over many years or decades.
Look at how many different projects the above examples are involved in. None of them are creating content for one channel, they're all using numerous outlets.
The good news is that there are several steps that can help anyone create a strong personal brand. If you follow these steps consistently, your personal brand will grow over time. Also, a little charisma does go a long way.
1. Establish Authentic Rapport with Others
You and your team now share success and failure as one cohesive unit. As a team leader, it’s your responsibility to foster an environment that will allow your group to meet all goals and objectives.
To do so, it’s important to make sure you have buy in from your team members and that everyone shares a common definition of what success means to you and the organization. This involves complete and open communication on your vision, from how you conduct yourself to your nonverbal cues.
Coming off as a genuine, “real person” to your team rather than a corporate robot, jerk, or politician is vital.
2. Be Confident and Real
That said, don’t fake it when you are struggling a bit, but find a way to regain that confidence quickly. When you express your values with confidence and have the outcomes to back it up, your influence will draw others in. People will naturally want to follow your lead because they know who you are and what you represent.
Consistency is key, and emphasizing your personal brand through your actions will further solidify your impact as a leader.
3. Invite Genuine Commentary and Feedback
When you listen to people you trust, you will gain new insight and perspective into yourself and how you operate. This will help you fine tune your personal brand, your goals, and how you interact with others moving forward.
Open lines of communication also inspire renewed interest in your values and your vision among your team. Your encouragement will also give your employees a further sense of purpose and value by gaining confidence in their abilities of what they can accomplish.
4. Present Your Professionalism
What you wear and how you present yourself is often the first way people identify the type of leader you are. Your appearance and style choices are the easiest ways to leave an impression, but also set a standard. Make it count.
Ladies: It’s all about balance and tailoring to things to the culture of the organization. You shouldn’t have to sacrifice style when it comes to dressing for a leadership role. However, your hair, makeup and outfit choices must all align to give off a clean, put together look. Michele Oppenheimer says, “The hair has to be shiny and vibrant, the makeup flawless and the clothes should be clean, well pressed and fit perfectly...” Many professionals look to online personal stylists to experiment with different looks and find the one that compliments their personal brand the best.
Gentlemen: The same goes for you. There’s no need to sacrifice your personal grooming preferences when it comes to your career. You should be mindful of what is acceptable in your industry, but it’s safe to say that being facial hair free everyday is no longer the standard.
Maintain a level of professionalism, and make sure your face and facial hair are well kept. Your facial hair should look like it’s there intentionally; a helpful tip would be to use personal time like weekends or vacations to spend time growing out your hair. Nicole Williams tells Business Insider, “spotty beards make men look like 18-year-olds."
On the other end, when shaving your face, be sure to eliminate the risk of unnecessary nicks, cuts and irritation by using the right shaving tools. New blades, shaving cream and a proper shaving technique are a must!
Don't be afraid to use your facial hair or hairstyle as a way to showcase your unique personality. Just look at Rand Fishkin in the picture above. His facial hair, while bold, is still maintained well and says a lot about his personality.
5. Do or Be Something Unique
They are memorable and iconic, right?
In the age of the internet, people can find advice and solutions to their problems from countless sources. You want them to turn to you.
Beyond having great advice, you need to be memorable. Look at Rand Fishkin and his unique facial hair and style. Can you look at that mustache and forget him? Or Prince and his wacky, well, everything.
6. Find Your Memorable Moment
Examine the circles you're hoping to break into, and see what kinds of issues they're having. Then, build your persona and content around speaking to those pain points and helping those circles thrive.
This will make you a hero in no time.
7. Live by Your Values
8. Be True to Yourself
Not to be confused with the previous point, being true to yourself is all about being authentic. In today's day and age of social media, It's easy to see through a façade. While your personal brand isn't just about your social media pages, it's important to make sure your personal brand is built around you - the real you.
If those closest to you tell you that you're putting on an act for your audience, it's time to rethink your brand. The best personal brands and brand leaders are the ones that flourish because they're genuine. Look at the list above and note how all of those brand leaders are putting themselves out there in a very authentic way.
Don't do anything you yourself wouldn't support or do, be honest, and be genuine. It will pay off.
So Where Should I Go from Here with my Personal Branding?
Whether you are building your personal brand to work in the corporate world or as an entrepreneur working remotely, either situation is no more or less important. If in the latter camp, check out this list of home based business ideas.
When developing your personal brand, never lose sight of who you are and what your ultimate goal is. There's nothing worse than getting several miles along your journey and realizing you've lost sight of your destination.
Most of all, have fun!
Creating a personal brand is a ton of work, but it's also incredibly rewarding and a great learning experience. Plus, it can generate a long-term income from that investment if executed well.
For further help developing your career, check out my book, Why Career Advice Sucks.