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Friday, April 24, 2015

Personal Branding and Measurement

It's once again the time of personal branding! The concept of personal branding is not new. Way back in the late nineties, Tom Peters coined the concept of personal branding With the advent of a plethora of online channels available, it has become easier, relevant and at the same time tough to build a personal brand today. We know about hundreds of books that speaks about how to project oneself, how to come out as positive and brilliant while discussing with others and so on. Online world has made the concept of personal branding more accessible and important. Personal branding is focused on the value you add to a business (Call it the skills you possess if thinking from the career perspective; showcasing your talent has become easier than never! Today is the time when recruiters are increasing the focus on social media and online channels in their hunt). It is essentially following the same core branding principle - how are you different; what's the promise that you offer?

In brief, the principles you should keep in mind before considering to build your brand are - what do you have to offer, how comfortable or passionate are you about the area that you picked up and how consistent you are with your efforts? We don't have any shortage for the medium we can use to utilize as channels for branding ourselves; what actually matters are the passion and willingness to learn and share the learning. Three channels I recommend you be active in are
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Blog
You may think blogging is not your cup of tea; no worries, new options like LinkedIn posts and event regular tweets are good to start and continue with. As I mentioned in my previous post on how to make your content fly; two key aspects of any content are relevance and share-ability. You can be in any of these channels - LinkedIn, twitter, social bookmarks and you name it - but what matters is how many followers you have, how many are reading and sharing your content; ultimately how many are looking forward to you as the subject matter expert?
As like these online channels, plenty of free tools are available to get a view of how well you are doing as a personal brand. Of course these are based on parameters a software/algorithm can read; so take all with a pinch of salt. I would recommend considering them in a relative sense than an absolute sense.For example, a klout score of 70 is good; but what is more important is how are you keeping up with the score over a period of a month, quarter or a year? Here are two tools that you may want to try out to understand better about your personal brand

Klout measures your influence across various social media channels like twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn and so on and rank Klout users accordingly. It gives a score which is a measure of your popularity. Depending on the channel, the criteria could be different for measurement (Example - for twitter, number of followers, re-tweets, favorites could be criteria; in case of LinkedIn, network coverage could be the criteria).

Similar to Klout, this tool is more focused on twitter.It provides with you an analysis of how many followers, history of follower-ship, re-tweets, mentions and so on. The beauty of this tool in my opinion is the demographics details it provides for you to fine tune your branding efforts.

Before you start your journey of building your personal brand, don't forget to read first the article written by Tom Peters on Personal Branding - The Brand Called You)


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