How to Identify Your Personal Brand in 4 Steps

In today’s digital world, having a personal brand is absolutely crucial for anyone from large company executives to start-up founders and even employees. 

The fact is that when people have problems they need solved, they’ll turn to those people who first pop in their minds as someone who can help. The better you are at presenting yourself and creating content that keeps your name front of mind, the more likely they’ll come to you. 

So, here are 4 steps to identify your personal brand if you don’t know where to start.

1. Decide What You Want to Be Known For

The first step can often be the hardest. Many people know they want to have an identity online but just can’t decide on the image and personality they want to get across. 

When this is the case, people will often revert to their default and do nothing. This leads to the worst case scenario where months, if not years, go by and no action is being taken.  

However, it shouldn’t be overcomplicated. Simply write down a list of things you want to be known for.

i.e. Do you want to be known as a speaker? Do you want to be known as somebody who’s funny, outgoing, caring, loving, or professional? You name it.

Simply start by writing down as many traits, qualities, talents and skills as you can think of that you want to be known for.

2. Ask Others to Describe You in a Few Words

The second step involves other people. Try and have about 10 or so people write down how they would describe you in a few words, but keep it anonymous. 

Ask them to write down positive and negative traits for how they would describe you to someone who didn’t you. For example, you might ask, “If you were to describe me to someone who didn’t know me, how would you describe who I am and what I’m about?”

You could do this digitally or on paper and save the answers for the next step. 

3. Compare the Two Data Sets 

From the two exercises, you’ll now have two different sets to work with: things that you want to be known for, and how other people see you at this point in your life. 

The next step is to compare the two and find differences and similarities. You’ll have 3 boxes:

  • Traits you’ve identified you want to be know for and other people have also mentioned — these are traits that are generally congruent with your personal brand and who you are. 
  • Traits other people have mentioned that you didn’t write down yourself — these are traits/strengths that others see in you but you don’t see in yourself. 
  • Traits you’ve identified you want to be know for but others haven’t mentioned — these are traits where you have to question: Are they really your strengths? Or are they simply your true self that you haven’t shown to other people? 

4. Decide on Your Personal Brand 

You’ve now realised how you want to present yourself and learned how other people currently see you. The next step is to decide on a personal brand which is most congruent with yourself. 

Think in terms of three categories: Career, Life and Personality, how are you going to present yourself to the world and be known for these things?