Personal branding programs are still misunderstood; they are being implemented the wrong way; in many cases people using social media without the necessary skills or support to get their personal brands in tip top shape first.
If businesses want to meet their key business drivers from personal branding programs, then taking the time to plan and implement effectively is crucial.
In this article I list many of the key facts around personal branding and include some tangible figures that will help executives to understand the real value.
Personal branding is valuable for the entire business
- People stop wasting valuable time and money explaining what they do
- Human resources benefit from improved staff retention & lower recruitment costs
- People feel more valued as there are the obvious associated self-esteem benefits
- Sales and marketing departments work harmoniously to create success
- The reach of marketing content is much higher if implemented correctly
Personal branding is tough to implement without buy in
Personal branding programs must obtain buy in from the top down and bottom up. It must be integrated into the culture of the business and all departments need to work together to make it successful.
Many think it is just about sharing corporate content on social media
It is not just about sharing pictures or corporate content on everyone’s social media channels. It involves taking time to put together the right plan and subsequent wording first, to help distinguish people from one other.
Then it is about sharing the right content in the right proportion to assist the person’s brand to grow alongside the businesses brand and visa-versa.
Many businesses are using personal brand strategies already
Over the last few years’ corporations have been rolling out culture change programs; helping employees to build influence on social media and creating influential thought-leadership content.
But some are sharing corporate messaging the wrong way; with no thought to their people and what their contacts really want to hear or see in their social media timelines.
We have become the media
For some time now you have been able to spread your message to anyone who is listening, in every industry you have people who create the news and influence people.
You also have heard the stories of people who have been fired within an hour or two after sending a badly thought out Tweet, damaging their careers beyond repair. This is very unusual and only in extreme cases of lack of common sense and rational thought. These isolated incidents can be managed and actually benefit the corporation if dealt with promptly in line with prior procedural planning.
Tell me the good news
The good news is that you can actually safeguard your career and grow your personal brand and the businesses brand effectively using social media.
The main challenge businesses face is that they don’t put together a plan for their teams. To get their personal brands in tip top shape it is still looked upon by many as an expense. Do not worry the figures speak for themselves, as it has now been proven a shrewd investment!
Introducing ghost writing
Executives are being assigned ghost writers as marketing teams are attempting to ‘Brand’ individuals with the corporate messaging. No real thought is given to the implications for employees’ careers or the businesses tangible returns over the medium to long term.
Unfortunately, many of these people do not write or dictate anything vaguely engaging and are now stuck with using the corporate content on their social profiles; which does them no favors at all. They have not created their own personal brand, just reproduced the corporate brand with a little tweak and perhaps a fresh approach.
The rise of the influencer program
You have influencer programs, companies formulate relationships with industry ‘experts’ who have specific audiences to spread their messaging and generate clicks and sales.
Unfortunately, these are usually short lived, as in many cases the companies do not usually dedicate enough resources to assist the relationships over the long term.
The wrong metrics are tracked so programs are shelved too early
Taking the time to plan out which metrics to track is important with any marketing or business plan. If you are tracing and tracking impressions and views VS clicks and conversions, then understanding your investment is not possible in the short term.
Building your personal branding program includes the following
- What your team members do
- What gives them authority and credibility
- Why are they different and or better than anyone else?
- Personal network growth
- Message amplification
- Relationship building
Results from personal branding can be transformational for businesses and individuals
- 561% more reach is obtained from employees sharing business messaging
- Content is shared 24X more frequently from employees VS brand accounts
- 8X more engagement from employees VS business social media accounts
Many businesses think the marketing department should be responsible for personal branding; but it is a specialist skill and a time honored process. Marketing is made up of so many different job roles and personal branding is something that should be done with expert guidance.