[GUIDE] Setting up your Personal Brand - 2021 Edition
Updated: May 13
This 2nd Edition, 2021 Personal Brand guide, is based on another year's worth of experience, experiments, big wins and dozens more case studies.
This approach uses a methodology that has been proven many times over in areas including but not limited to Fintech, Edtech, Leadership and all those crazy kids among us who are up to something bigger than they are.
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
IS THIS FOR YOU?
Chances are, it's not for you!
A Personal Brand is a brilliant tool for the right situation and the right commercial goals.
It is my intention that this guide works hard to provide you with enough context to get to a yes/no by the end of your read.
A Personal Brand might be for you, if you are:
1. Reflecting on the idea of having your own personal brand but maybe feeling overwhelmed, unsure or weary of how to find the starting point. This should get you clear on what's what.
2. Putting off setting up your personal brand for a while now, but the annoying little voice is still at you, so you are "exploring". I reckon timing is always perfect, regardless of what we may think.
3. Up to something bigger than you, and you're certain your message needs to go wider and farther.
PURPOSE OF A PERSONAL BRAND
>> PART ONE
First comes leverage, then comes influence!
When you first invest in getting your personal brand up and out, you are investing in Leverage. As well as a means to an end, and a powerful tool to have in your business arsenal.
A Personal Brand creates familiarity, certainty, and trust in the community you are here to serve before you even meet.
That's important because....
Certainty is one of the six human needs we seek out in life in our day-to-day.
When a financial transaction is involved, certainty and trust are required from the outset to make a transaction possible. I imagine that is not news to you as much as a reminder.
Back to Leverage!
Over time, your Personal Brand goes from an idea on a white board,
to a website, social presence and a media piece or two.
With sufficient SEO efforts and sharing of those initial assets,
your Personal Brand is visited and reviewed, and in some cases - when the media is deemed worthy enough - shared by those visitors with their respective networks.
At this point, your Personal Brand goes from being a static asset to a living, breathing organism that seeks to attract opportunities, projects, and sales for you.
That Personal Brand is working hard to increase your:
1. Net Worth,
2. Quality of your Network;
3. Business Development Efforts
PURPOSE OF A PERSONAL BRAND
>> PART TWO
First comes leverage, then comes influence!
Having a Personal Brand, and/or being a Thought Leader are descriptives of a person with influence spanning industries and people with professional and heart-based missions.
With Influence comes the ability to:
Send out ideas into the world that stick
Benefit from being seen as an expert in your field
Be discovered online by total strangers
Being invited to present at other people’s events
Being invited to collaborate on projects
Being found on the first page of Google by a reporter who then calls your for expert comment in the article they are about to publish
Charge a premium to speak at events
Having a loyal community who values your efforts by investing in the products that you promote
Maybe quit your day job?
THE FIVE PHASES OF A PERSONAL BRAND
THIS IS AN OVERVIEW OF THE DIFFERENT PHASES YOU WILL LIKELY MOVE THROUGH IF YOU ARE JUST SETTING OUT ON YOUR PERSONAL BRAND JOURNEY
Phase 1 is Setting Up
This is you going from zero to one. It can take 1 to 2 weeks for the practicalities of websites and social profiles. There's a pretty cool Infographic of this phase over here >>
Phase 2 is Being Seen
This is also known as PR, or Brand Awareness. We reckon you want approx. 6 to 12 consecutive weeks of being seen by your ideal audience. We've got a great write up on this over here if that's relevant for you.
Phase 3 is Inviting Action
This is also known as marketing. It has a lot to do with your Sales Funnel.Ideally this is threaded through your Being Seen efforts. We have a good Sales Funnel Infographic over here.
Phase 4 is Creating Transactions
That would be another word for sales and the sales process is a whole piece
unto it self.
Phase 5 is Innovate and Elevate
This is a whole lot of fun.
Momentum and creative dynamite abound in this phase.
A PERSONAL BRAND ROADMAP
This Roadmap Infographic is a deep dive on phases 1 and 2 of the 5 Phases referenced above; Setting Up and Being Seen.
PERSONAL BRAND CHECKLIST - STARTER EDITION:
This is not a definitive list by any means, this is a list of the most common activities that has worked for hundreds of people we have facilitated in creating their Personal Brands.
We have organised this Personal Brand Checklist into an official Starter Edition, and then a more comprehensive list of the nice to have elements that you can add to the Starter edition, over time. (We'd suggest weeks 10+)
Clarity of: Purpose, Paragraphs and Positioning
Domain Name - www.firstlast.com & website
Images of you - personal images work, professional ones are better.
One hand-pressed, and properly done social media profile that your community uses/frequents most. Eg. LinkedIn.
PERSONAL BRAND CHECKLIST - LEADER'S EDITION:
Assumes you have the Starter Edition under your belt, by the way.
This section Is presented as an a la carte menu.
The idea being that you work with what you have, with where you are, engaging the items on this list that resonate most with you, right now. As you move forward into your personal branding efforts, you can add additional items to your persona brand efforts.
Upgrade a second social media profile; Facebook
Personal Brand Photography,
Logo of your name
Tagline - Eg, Shannon Eastman, Work That Matters
Social Media Skins changed over bi-monthly for your profile
Social Media that you splinter off of your core Media Piece and use to promote that core media piece (part of being seen for 12-consecutive weeks)
Video content < less than 14 minutes of you presenting/speaking/sharing
weeBOOK - a short written media piece people can access free
X3 Articles that educate your community on the pain, problem, challenge, and a solution they could consider using to solve said problem. Published on your site
Articles that educate your community on the pain, problem, challenge and a solution they could consider using to solve said problem. Published on other people’s sites
Media Assets: Media is any ‘produced communication piece” that features you. Things like, you writing a guest article, you being a guest on a relevant podcast, you producing a ‘Live” on LinkedIn, or like:
Host your own show; podcast, youtube
Host an online group or community
Volunteer on Boards
SEO (phase 2 activity)
The idea is that each tactic you opt into, is supporting the one common goal.
Shannon Eastman, Growth Consultant
Inside Growth Podcast
Shannon Eastman is a growth consultant, human behaviour expert, communications adviser, management consultant, mentor and business coach. Shannon is the Host of inside GROWTH, Founder of Funds Ireland MiniCon and an Advisor to starts ups in the Middle East.