BE AWARE OF WHAT YOU POST ON SOCIAL MEDIA, IT BECOMES YOUR BRAND

The term branding has long been associated with companies, but today almost every individual has a personal brand. Not many of us have consciously cultivated these brands, but they exist nonetheless. A digital footprint in the sands of time and space crowd-sourced by friends, colleagues and bosses. According to an AVG study, 92 percent of children under the age of two already have a digital footprint.

The question is no longer IF you have a personal brand, but if you choose to guide and cultivate the brand or to let it be defined on your behalf. Here are seven ways to start building an awesome personal brand.

Start thinking of yourself as a brand

What do you wish for people to associate with you when they think of your name? Is there a certain subject matter in which you want to be perceived as an expert or are there general qualities you want linked to your brand? Once you understand how you wish your brand to be perceived, you can start to be much more strategic about your personal brand. This doesn’t mean you can’t be human.

Audit your online presence

You can’t mold perception without first understanding the current status. In other words, Google yourself and setup alerts for your name on a regular basis. Have a fairly common name? Consider using your middle initial or middle name to differentiate. Cultivating a strong personal brand is just as much about being responsive to what is being said as it is about creating intellectual property.

Source: Forbes.com Author Shama Hyder