Recently I read an article on Yahoo about how women who want to advance their careers or have their own business must create a personal brand online. The writer, Pam Gaulin, states one’s online brand is “a digital representation of your reputation.” Thus, everything you post online, including those bar pictures on Facebook, are a reflection of your brand.
The article includes just a few steps on how one creates a personal brand. First, a personal website must be created and it is suggested that a domain name is purchased. Why? Gaulin writes, “It will increase your cache as a personal brand.” Next, a blog needs to be created. The blog can be on your website or on another site, like WordPress. Finally, you must have a social networking presence on sites like Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest. These must be maintained regularly. Many are under the impression that just creating a presence on social media is enough, but if it is not maintained it doesn’t help your brand.
This article did not capture all the process of creating a brand. In fact, it made it seem easy. A brand is not something that is easy to create or maintain. Rules/guidelines must be set in order to make sure the brand stays true to itself. For example, a brand must have a mission statement, brand style, design guidelines, rules to follow regarding posts on social networking sites, and of course, a color palette, logo and typography that captures the essence of the brand.
I know, I know, the aforementioned seem applicable only to companies, not persons, but I disagree. It’s the small things, along with consistency on all platforms that make a brand, a brand. Perhaps I feel this way because I created a brand for a small nonprofit organization and thus, think a personal brand should have similar elements.
All of these elements should be put in a brand book to serve as a guide for those representing the brand on various media platforms.