The Kim Kardashian Way: A Guide To Personal Branding
Originally appeared on Meed - The Community For Young Professionals
I see you. You’re one of us. You routinely check Kim Kardashian’s instagram, Kimojis are life, and no one needs to update you on all the Rob Kardashian-Blac Chyna engagement drama; clearly you have a solid understanding of Kim Kardashian’s personal brand… Or, uh, lol, of course you don’t do any of those things. Me neither… Nonetheless, there’s a lot to learn from the Queen of social media herself, Ms. Kim Kardashian, when it comes to branding yourself professionally.
At this point, you’re probably thinking, “what the hell does Kim K. have to do with professional branding?” Well, last I checked, Kim Kardashian is making loads of $$$ off her personal brand backed business ventures, so regardless of your personal feelings about the 35 year old daughter of famed OJ Simpson attorney Robert Kardashian, we all clearly have a lot to learn from her.
Let’s all not forget Kim Kardashian’s roots- Paris Hilton’s personal assistant and silent friend on The Simple Life.
But does anyone, other than early 2000s pop culture aficionados like myself, actually remember this? No! And that’s because Kim’s rebranding skills are on fleek.
As a student, you’re probably not exactly the most professional person on the planet–you might not even own the perfect business professional ensemble! The key to rebranding, as taught by Kim K, is to forget the past and start focusing on the future, on the new you. It’s never too late to start building or re-building your brand. Get down to it and start that resume from scratch, apply for your first job, practice those interview skills, and if anyone asks about your less than professional days, ignore them.
A valued and widely-respected trait in most aspects of life is humility, but when it comes to your professional brand, it’s all about confidence and shameless self-promotion. No one does this better than Kim — have you seen her Instagram?
Do you see how many selfies are posted directly after one another?
When you create your professional brand, there is absolutely nothing wrong with emphasizing your best qualities. This is one of the few times in your life when you can talk about how amazing you are, guilt-free, and no one has the right to complain about your lack of modesty. If you are great at writing, say so and show them your best work! If you designed a really cool app, let the world know! There is no such thing as a humble brag when it comes to your professional brand. If people didn’t respond to Kim’s shameless self-promotion, she wouldn’t have over 66.5 million Instagram followers.
3) Owning Your Mistakes
No one, not even Kim Kardashian, is perfect, and we all probably have at least one or two things on the Internet we regret. Maybe it’s a less than funny tweet, a grammatically flawed school newspaper article, or even an overlooked spelling error on an already submitted cover letter.
One of the most famous slip ups of all time has to be the Kim K. ugly cry.
Kim, I love you… but girl, that is not a flattering photo.
Kim managed to turn that single unfortunate screenshot into an empire of humor products. I’m talking phone cases, T-shirts, rings, and even an emoji!
At some point in your life, it is inevitable that you are going to make a mistake that affects your professional life. I’m going to assume that if you are reading this article you probably don’t have the star power to turn your mistake into an empire. However, you can turn it into a point of growth. Whatever that mistake was, try and improve on it, then TALK TALK TALK about what you learned from it and how it helped you grow. Employers actually love to hear this because they know that, especially in your first job, you are going to make loads of them. In an interview, don’t shy away from talking about an embarrassing blunder, as long as you can back it up with a positive outcome. Even better, publish a story about the experience!
4) Network, Network, Network
Once you’ve established a professional brand, it’s important to expand your network. Kim is fortunate enough to be able to rely on her family and, of course, good old Ryan Seacrest. What would Kim K. be if she didn’t rely on America’s favorite E-News correspondent, Ryan Seacrest, to produce Keeping Up With The Kardashians, the show that escalated her fame to all new heights.
Do you really think Kim K. was randomly selected to be a contestant on Dancing With The Stars Season 7? No, of course she had the right connection!
Obviously Ryan Seacrest was said right connection.
Though your professional network might not include Kris Jenner or Kanye West, relying on the people you do know is incredibly important in today’s job market. Grow your network by reaching out to alumni, family friends, and even friends of friends. Ask them to grab coffee to learn more about their profession, company, or even another connection they may have. Not a coffee drinker? Don’t have the time? Feeling a little shy? Meed exists to give you another way to make these, extremely valuable, connections, right from the comfort of your dorm room. Connect with Influencers on Meed by engaging with their posts, participating in AMAs, and asking them questions about their experiences or company. Don’t underestimate the value of any connection. After all, wasn’t it Paris Hilton, Ms. “What’s Walmart? Do they sell walls there?” that first put Kim on the map?