Personal Branding Tips You Can Implement Today

I share many strategies and techniques in this space, including many that take a “big picture” approach—in other words, they may not pay immediate dividends. Like most things in life, a great personal brand cannot be built overnight. Today, however, I’m going to take a different approach and share several personal branding tips that you can put into practice immediately.

1) Take a look at your business cards. Are they sharp, professional, and distinctive? In many cases your business card may be the only connection you have with a potential client—so make sure your card represents you and your business well.

2) Control your name online. Even if you don’t yet have a website or a social media presence, it’s wise to plan for the future. Check to see if is still available, and if so, purchase the rights to the domain. It will cost you less than $15 per year. In addition, register your name on social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

3) Work on your elevator speech. Every business owner needs to have their “elevator speech” honed to perfection. You should be able to tell potential clients, partners, or employees about your company in 20-40 seconds—and you should be able to do it compellingly. Evaluate your elevator speech right now. Do you have one? Is it effective? If not, get to work.

4) Think about your first impression. How do you come across when you meet someone for the first time? Confident? Friendly? Nervous? Ask for some opinions—friends, colleagues, and family members can probably give you an accurate picture of the impression you make. If it isn’t what it should be, spend some time thinking about how you can improve.

5) Tell your story. Remember that branding comes down to painting a picture of yourself for the world to see. So take a moment to think about your interactions with the outside world. Are you reinforcing your brand at every opportunity? Or are you contradicting the brand you’re trying to build? Evaluate your branding efforts and make changes, if necessary.

While personal branding is an ongoing process that is never “done”, the ideas I’ve just listed can make an immediate impact. Put them in to practice today!