As a career success coach, I urge my clients to build strong relationships with the people in their life – to make friends. Cindy Yantis has become a friend of mine. She is a career architect, helping people build careers they love. Our friendship started when I responded to a query she posted asking for advice on personal branding for her blog.
Her query resulted in a dynamite blog post called 50 Seriously Greats Tips to Elevate Your Personal Brand in 2010. It had some really great common sense career success advice. I liked her lengthy post so much that I asked Cindy if she would allow me to excerpt it on this blog. She graciously agreed. So each day this week, I will be sharing 10 of Cindy’s 50 tips on personal branding.
Personal branding is an important key to creating positive personal impact. As a career success coach, I help my clients create and nurture their unique personal brands. My advice on branding building is simple. First, figure out how you want others to think of you. Second, consistently and constantly act in a manner that will get you to think of you that way. You have to do all the work when it comes to deciding how you want others to think of you. Cindy’s tips will help you consistently and constantly act in a manner consistent with your brand.
Here are tips 11 to 20 of Cindy’s tips on personal branding for career success…
11. Get yourself on the morning news shows!
“Call your local television news stations (plural!) and ask for the person who books the morning news. Ask if you can send this person an e-mail introducing yourself. If you get that opportunity, BRIEFLY (two sentences at most!) tell them what you’re capable of talking about, and let them know you’d be happy to be available at the drop of a hat. Morning news shows have interview slots for members of the community–make sure that’s you by communicating how you can be of service to them. Be available too; nobody is perfect, and sometimes a booked guest has to cancel. Be the person they call to fill the spot and you’ll be doing a lot to make their life easier.
Pro-tip: send the planner or producer brief notes about the most popular questions people want to know about what you’ll be talking about. Example: If you’re a pet store owner, and your interview is on pets, list the top 10 questions you get asked, AND, type out your general answers. This gives the producer an idea of how to make the interview interesting, AND gives them an idea of how you’ll answer those types of questions. If you hit the nail on the head for what the producer is looking for, you may just hear your questions being asked, verbatim!” Fritz Chaleff (Communications Director | U.S. Congressman Brian P. Bilbray) bilbray.house.gov
12. Have your own unique name online
“Be sure the name you’re using is consistent across sites, especially if using social networking sites like LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Your name is part of your brand leverage it. For example, the first step in your own branding is to Google/Bing/Yahoo yourself and look at results. If your name is fairly common, can you create a more unique identity by using your full name / middle initial, etc.? Be cautious about using nicknames. Also, as part of researching what’s already out there on the web about you, leverage the tools like recruiters use (www.whoozy.com or www.pipl.com or www.Zoominfo.com) to conduct an even more comprehensive search and explore your online presence. Posting and building an online presence can help boost your image/brand.” Danielle Beauparlant Moser, blendedlearningteam.com
13. Control your tweet messages
“I love scheduling many of my Twitter messages each week in Hootsuite. It allows me to spend an hour or so each week setting up my regular tweets and Hootsuite lets me see the Stats on each tweet, and has provided hootlet which lets me tweet any web page easily. I love it!” Wanda Jewell, sibaweb.com
14. It’s all about the company you keep
“Have you ever heard of “guilt by association?” Well, it works in the other direction too. One of the best ways to elevate your personal brand is by creating genuine relationship with other well-respected individuals in your industry and niche. By cultivating relationships (and emailing a person once doesn’t count as a relationship), you gain a sense of credibility from the company you keep. Plus, you can also gain access to those people’s fans- folks that likely overlap your target market. This is a strategy that takes time, but is worthwhile over the long haul and will not only give you the most bang for your buck, but also the most long-term credibility. Carol Roth, carolroth.com
15. Be bold and valuable
“Do something big, outrageous and valuable to your target market .” Carma Spence-Pothitt dragonwyze.com
16. Focus on where you’re going
“Focus less on where you are now, and more on where you want to be a year from now, and start positioning yourself that way.” Alexandra Golaszewska, eastern-star.net
17. Create an event where you’re the center of attention
“In February I created the ‘Song Bomb’ recruiting 32 songwriters to each write a song, record it and post it on my website. I wrote, recorded and posted 32 songs myself. The rewards from this venture? All the fans of those songwriters who visited my site to hear their songs got to find out about me too. My site traffic for the month at least tripled and I have a project that I can use to bring new fans to my site for months to come. More over I strengthened my relationship with every songwriter who I brought on for the project; everyone was grateful for an catalyst to write new songs and get them out into the world.” Timmy Riordan, TimmyRiordan.com
18. Write an advice booklet
“If you’re a small biz owner or solo entrepreneur, you’re an expert and can write advice booklets or brochures for your target market. Small booklets are easy to produce on office copiers. Design a cover and you have a wonderful, unique and valuable branding and marketing piece to pass out at conferences or mail to prospective clients. http://moonstruckpromotions.com Tammy Brackett
19. Update regularly to build your reputation
“1) Use a professional resume writer and update your resume regularly. There are degrees of professional certification — use the best you can afford — and repurpose their content for LinkedIn and other professional profiles. 2) Ask for new recommendations for your online profile quarterly. Pull language from the quotes, “e.g. creative, thought-leader, skillful manager, etc. and create an intro paragraph for yourself that leverages the same language. Consistency in a brand builds strength. 3) Make a vow that if you offer to do something for someone else (e.g. create an introduction) do it within 24 hours after the ask. This builds a reputation for speedy, reliable assistance.” Karen Howe mindbloom.com
20. BE PERSONAL with your blog
“Obviously, if you are not maintaining a blog, you should. Too many people writing niche blogs think they cannot inject their personality into their blog. They also think that every post must be laser-targeted to their niche. Don’t be a robot -write in a way that let’s people get to know you – that’s how you elevate your personal brand.” Chris Reimer, thebasemententrepreneur.com
The common sense point here is simple. If you want to become a career success, you need to create and nurture your unique personal brand. In this post I have presented 10 common sense personal branding tips from Cindy Yantis, a career architect. I present them here because in my work as a career success coach I have learned firsthand of the power of personal branding. Here are the second 10 of Cindy’s 50 Seriously Great Tips to Elevate Your Personal Brand in 2010. 11) Get yourself on the morning news shows. 12) Have your own unique name online. 13) Control your tweet messages. 14) It’s all about the company you keep. 15) Be bold and valuable. 16) Focus on where you’re going. 17) Create an event where you’re the center of attention. 18) Write an advice booklet. 19) Update regularly to build your reputation. 20) Be personal with your blog.
That’s Cindy Yantis – and others – take on personal branding. What’s yours? Please take a few minutes to leave a comment sharing your thoughts with us. As always, thanks for reading.