Do entrepreneurs need personal branding?
Is it just a buzz word, or do we really need it? Here's an opinion.
The word personal branding seems to have come into fashion in the last two decades. Many people think it’s a brand-new concept.
But rewind 100 years, take a look at brands such as Tatas, Birlas, Walmart, Ford Motor Company, Merill Lynch, J.P. Morgan and many others. All of them are named after their founders.
When I was growing up, an automobile shop in my neighborhood was called C.R. and sons, named after the founders. It was customary for most businesses to be named after their founders.
It was a way to attach their personal guarantee to a product or service.
That was traditionally the way business was done.
Then came the start-up boom. Terms like cofounders, standard operating procedures, angel investors, and venture capitalists started doing the rounds. The purpose of building a business was to sell it.
Companies started having their own identities because one wouldn’t know who would own it ten years from now.
The sole-proprietor was coming to an end. It created a need for individuals to start branding themselves or become irrelevant.
The old way of doing business was to start, build, and pass it on to your kids.
The new way is to start, grow and sell it.
Once upon a time, people joined the same professions or businesses as their parents. Not anymore. The average person has more than one career in a lifetime, some even have multiple professions at the same time, and thus the need for personal branding.
Here are some reasons to build your personal brand:
#1 Communicate your value
It’s a way to communicate our value proposition to the intended audience.
Take me for example. My profile in most places says “Vinil Ramdev is an entrepreneur, personal branding consultant, and a sales trainer.” Will this be my profile forever? Maybe or maybe not? But it will always be a part of me in the future even when I change professions or start something new altogether.
Many people think personal branding is a destination; it’s not. As human beings, we evolve over time. And our personal brand grows with us.
#2 Building that emotional connect
People do business with individuals they trust and like. The marketplace is crowded with service providers. How do we choose one over the other? Do we make a rational choice? Not likely. As human beings, our choices are mostly emotional.
When we share our stories of love, happiness, challenges, adversity, and despair; we tend to build that emotional connection with our audience.
#3 Help people make the right choice
Most people don’t want to make a mistake. All of us have purchased products or services that we regretted. When one has earned the reputation of authenticity and trust, people tend to trust his recommendations.
It gives ‘YOU – The Personal Brand’ the power to recommend products and services that benefit people and help them avoid costly mistakes.
If you need more convincing that personal branding is important, check out my article statistics to prove personal branding is necessary. I believe resumes may eventually become a thing of the past, and hiring might be done based on a person’s reputation, referrals, and authenticity.
Whether you are an entrepreneur, freelancer, or an employee; time to consider personal branding. Your next step is to check out my Guide to Personal Branding.