26 Ways to Develop Your Personal Brand Online and Off

26 Ways to Develop Your Personal Brand Online and Off

Author: Barry Feldman / Source: Jeffbullas's Blog You’re a sales and marketing machine. You’re constantly selling yourself and your ideas

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26 Ways to Develop Your Personal Brand Online and Off

You’re a sales and marketing machine. You’re constantly selling yourself and your ideas. You’re attaching your name to a specific area of expertise and delivering useful content – online and off – to earn more visibility and build trust with your peers.

Or you’re not.

In either case, you have a personal brand. The question is: Are you working on it to accelerate the success of your career?

If so, this post, and my new book, The Road to Recognition, is for you. In the book, co-author Seth Price and I, present 26 big ideas to help develop your personal brand. The chapters presented A-to-Z style, are also crammed with actionable advice.

I’m happy to share the ideas with you here and now.

1. Authenticity

The road to building a compelling personal brand is paved with authenticity. Understand your personal brand’s all about the real you.

Look within. Create a compass based on who you are and the qualities that set you apart. How might you leverage your strengths?

Gather insights from your peers too. How do the people who know you describe you? What makes you credible? Which attributes of your personality make you interesting?

I love how William Arruda, author, and founder of Reach Personal Branding puts it: “Be real before being virtual.” Faking it won’t fly. Wherever your branding journey takes you, or you take it, simply be yourself.

2. Blogging

The most important personal branding development in the age of digital media is the power to publish at will and express your ideas. As such, you’re going to make your blog the centerpiece of your personal brand.

Your blog will provide a home for you to showcase your point of view. Be humble, but confident. Be generous with your insights and ideas. And if you’re new to blogging, be patient. It takes time and commitment to building an audience. Keep at it.

3. Content

Create content to connect with your target audience. On your blog and all across the social media channels you’ll use, create an interesting mix of content in various formats to earn the mindshare and trust your personal brand needs to blossom.

4. Design

Your personal brand needs a smart and stylish identity. Everything you create should be presented with class and continuity.

Don’t scrimp on design. Plan to invest either time, or money, or both into making your website, blog, social media profile pages, and anything you print, reflect well on your brand. Develop a tasty logo, color palette, and design standards.

Avoid getting fancy or unnecessarily creative with your profile photo. Get a headshot. Make eye contact with the camera’s lens, smile and look like someone people want to work with.

5. Email

Don’t assume building an audience on social media is all you need to connect with people. You need to build a list of email subscribers as well.

Your email subscription list is all yours. Email is private and permission-based. In the business world, it’s a pervasive communication channel. You probably skip breakfast more often than you skip checking your email each morning.

The most important requests, offers, and updates you want your audience to know about are going to be delivered via email, the media you can count on. Commit to developing an email list and using it to nurture relationships.


You can’t have a brand without an audience, so one of your goals must be to grow a following on social media. You’ll contribute to, and lead conversations there.

The number of followers isn’t critical; the connection you make is. Digital media makes it possible to develop a tribe of followers that are like-minded people with common interests – people you’ll aim to educate and inspire.

Every chapter in The Road to Recognition features a contribution from a business leader or marketing expert. Your host, Jeff, joins the party in chapter F.

7. Google

Think of Google as the business card the entire world has instant access to. Search your name on Google to assess how the world sees you. Do you like what you see? Does your website or blog appear? Do you find your social media profile pages?

Evaluate the results and create and execute a plan to elevate how your personal brand appears on the world’s top search engine.

8. Helping

If you poll experts on the most important skills for personal branding, no doubt the ideas you collect will include ambition, vision, and communication. Generosity may not make the list, but should.

Giving of yourself – helping others – is a major key to elevating your personal brand and the new media landscape delivers infinite opportunities to do it. Helping others makes you a leader, proves you are a team player and activates your network.

9. Influencers

Making influential friends is a key accelerator to building your own influence. Make a point to connect with people you look up to: authors, bloggers, speakers, and leaders of prominent brands in your niche.

Use social media networks and influencer marketing tools to identify the leaders and up-and-comers. Seek them out and find ways to be of value to them. The influential friends you make will open doors.

10. Joining

Affiliations are all-important to the growth of your brand. Join communities where ideas are incubated and new relationships are established and nurtured. Get involved and make your presence known.

11. Keywords

Keywords are, well, key, to positioning your personal brand effectively. Potential new followers on social media networks will use keywords to search for people to follow. What’s more, they’re likely to receive recommendations of people to follow based on keywords linked to their interests.

Create a short list of keywords relevant to your area of expertise and use them often on your site and across all your social media profiles.

12. LinkedIn

LinkedIn has undergone a lot of changes recently, but while its features change, its focus does not. LinkedIn is for professionals. Content and updates about cats and dogs, or celebrities and gossip don’t go over well there.

So it remains the personal branding epicenter of the Internet. It’s…