Stop working on your personal brand — you’re wasting your time.

You don’t define your personal brand, your work does.

You can do a lot of things with thousands of hours of your time.

And just about any of them would be better than spending it “developing your personal brand.”

That’s why I cringed when I read a social media consultant’s bio that referenced how he’s done just that.

Not only is bragging about how you spend thousands of hours on your own brand an odd sales pitch to a potential client (who would likely rather hear about what you do for your clients), but it also represents a common misconception about branding.

Your personal brand isn’t defined by you — it’s defined by your work.

When somebody claims to spend lots of time working on their personal brand, what that actually means is they’ve spent that time chasing meaningless vanity metrics on their personal social media accounts.

That’s not how personal branding works.

How do you actually develop a strong personal brand?

You do work. Great work. Work that gets noticed.

Work that delivers what it promises and makes people want to talk about it.

Without the work, there is no brand. No matter what you say on social media or how many times you say it.

Want to be known? Do great work.

Want to be an influencer? Do great work.

Want to attract clients? Do great work.

I spend no time working on my personal brand, choosing instead to focus on doing great work and creating things of value.

As a result, the time I invest in my newsletter and the work I do for clients frames people’s perceptions of me.

My work is my brand — whether I like it or not — so that’s where I focus my effort.

All the inspirational Instagram quotes, riveting Snapchat stories, and Gary Vaynerchuk-inspired hustle in the world will never define your personal brand the way your work does.

Stop trying to tell people who you are and start doing meaningful work that demonstrates it.

Spend your thousands of hours driving tangible results, proving what makes you unique, and creating value for others.

When you do that, you won’t have to worry about creating your personal brand because your work will have done it for you.

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I run the For The Interested newsletter and help clients use social media and newsletters to grow and activate audiences.

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