The Importance of a Personal Brand 

When most of us think of “personal brands,” our minds often wander to social media influencers; those known for their expertise, knowledgeable of their own niche, and entrusted by their followers.  

A personal brand is defined by how others perceive your skills, talent, and qualifications. As a jobseeker, a personal brand is an essential part of your career search journey as it allows for promotion of your reputation and, in turn, attracts potential employers through social media, job-posting websites, and networking events. 

The key to building a personal brand is to communicate your professional background and sequentially, advance and develop through new opportunities. 

It is important to note that building a personal brand is an investment that helps to define who you are as a jobseeker and what you hope to achieve within your career and industry. As a unique and vital part to your recognition in the workplace, below you will find the four pillars to building your personal brand. 

The Four Pillars to Building Your Personal Brand 

1. Define your personal brand. 

To define your personal brand, you will need to distinguish what assets you bring to the table. These may be skills you have acquired through  career experience and/oron the job training programs such as bootcamps, internships or apprenticeship programs.  Additional assets to consider when defining your personal brand are your credentials such as certifications,licenses and degreesas they exhibit expertise in specific subject matters. For example, if you are in search of becoming a Data Analyst, an IBM SkillsBuild Data Analyst Professional certification is a clear asset.  

Keep in mind that assets reflect who you are, what you do, and the values that you stand for. Therefore, when building your personal brand, you may also consider defining your values and beliefs as recruiters and hiring managers are in search of candidates who align well with company values.  

Key Tip: When defining your personal brand, ask yourself the following questions: 

  • “What unique perspective do I bring to the industry?” 
  • “What can I bring to the table that no other candidate can?” 
  • “How can I utilize my assets to contribute value to my individual work, team, or field of work?” 

2. Develop a brand message. 

As a candidate, a brand message consists of two or three sentences describing what it is you have to offer to an employer, team, or job position. The right branding message has the potential to lead to new employment opportunities or expansion of your current professional network.  

Key Tip: When developing your personal brand message, ask yourself the following questions: 

  • “Why do I want to build a personal brand?” 
  • “What characteristics do I want to associate with my brand?” 
  • “What outcomes do I hope to achieve in the near future?” 

3. Target your audience.  

Vital to the development of your personal brand, it is important to identify and target your niche audience. For example, if you are in search of breaking into the Information Technology industry, you may wish to analyze key characteristics found within your target audience, and in turn utilize such to implement and pitch your personal brand. 

4. Network within your target industry. 

Building a personal brand may appear promotional at first glance, however it is merely how you define the value your career experience can bring potential employers. In order to build a personal brand, consider establishing interpersonal connections within your target industry. Keep in mind networking within your target industry takes time, therefore, ensure that you forge valuable relationships and remain in contact. 

Become Knowledgeable, Likable, and Trustable. 

The idea that employees should build their own personal brand has gained popularity over the past decade. A personal brand not only provides recognizability for your unique set of skills, accomplishments, and experiences but in turn, increases your access to opportunities and career growth. 

If you would like to learn more about job search strategies, personal branding, and more, join us for free career advice at YUPRO Placement’s Jobseeker Bootcamp. Our bootcamp takes place each month with 45-minute training held Tuesday-Friday from 1:00-1:45 PM ET/ 10:00-10:45 AM PT via Zoom.  

Register here to take the next step in your career search journey! 

Key Takeaways: 

  • Know what you bring to the table. 
  • Research your target audience. 
  • Forge valuable relationships by networking within your target industry. 

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