Personal Branding: It’s Never Too Late For A Professional Rebirth
An incredible resume and a stellar LinkedIn profile is not enough in today’s business world. You need to cut through the white noise and stand out in the crowd. The best way to make your mark is to build your personal brand online. You need to be Apple, Coca Cola, Ford or in my case Joe Gill Incorporated.
Building your own brand (or rebranding) does not happen overnight it takes time and tons of effort. I have been working on mine continuously for over 8 years.
Back in 2008, I was a traditional marketer specializing in events and marcom. However, that all changed after I took a course with now inbound marketing thought leader, David Meerman Scott. Coming from the original social marketing (events) world, this new communication/networking medium fascinated me.
After being laid off a year later, I was given an opportunity to hone my social media and content marketing skills. I became the lead blogger and site director of Boston Sports Then & Now. A website that barely had 100 hits a month attracted more than 362,000 visitors in 2013.
I learned how to create consumable, engaging content.
Through social media channels like Facebook, Google + & Twitter, I was able to distribute this original content to the masses and building communities along the way. I began to see visitor tendencies and understand their behaviors. This allowed me to continually tweak my social and content strategies.
Even an “offline” networking event called Boston Sports Blogapalooza spawned from my ever growing online brand due to all the connections I made throughout the Boston blogosphere.
My professional rebirth had begun and my personal rebranding was well on it’s way.
Keys To My Professional Rebirth
- Finding My Niche — Folks always told me I was a great story teller. Blogging and social media gave me the platforms to create and distribute my content to the masses digitally. Opportunity knocked and I was happy I answered that door.
- Feeding My Head — I continued to read everything possible on digital marketing and social media in particular. These were ways I made myself more marketable. My product is my expertise and I needed to differentiate my personal brand from the competition.
- Becoming A Thought Leader — By curating content and writing/speaking (Twitter chats are great ways to promote your personal brand) about my craft, I established myself as a thought leader in social media marketing. As one of my former colleagues said, “ I learned more about social media in 15 minutes from you than from reading any article or book”. This made me realize that I could teach others in a way they could easily understand. I then truly felt like a thought leader.
- Continually Evolving — I also learned in never being complacent and taking nothing for granted (four layoffs does that to you). Continually learning about the latest in social media marketing puts you on the curve or even ahead of it. If you take a break, someone else is going to pass you by guaranteed. Never get comfortable because that dream job may pass you by because you didn’t put in more effort. It’s all about keeping up with the Joneses.
I hope sharing my professional rebirth will give you the confidence and tips to embark on your own personal rebranding journey.
Remember, we may be lucky enough to have multiple opportunities to “make our mark”, just don’t let yours pass you by.