You may consider branding as a concept applying only to a company and its presence, but everyone has their own personal brand, public speakers included. Guy Kawasaki, for instance, possesses a powerful personal brand that he builds though speaking engagements and through social media. Here are some ways speakers can cultivate their own brands:
Treat Yourself like a Brand
To be a brand, you need to see yourself as one. Doing so means figuring out what subject matter or areas of expertise you want people to associate with your name. Once you have a vision of your brand perception, you can take a more focused approach to promoting your personality. You can then take advantage of the same techniques companies do when trying to raise brand awareness, as many of the same tactics work for both situations.
Share Expertise through Q&A Sites
Platforms like Yahoo! Answers and Quora are resources for online searchers looking for answers to their questions, provided by credible sources. Anyone can offer a response to the inquiry, and answers are voted upon by users who find it informative, interesting or thoughtful. A speaker seeking to build a brand can get involved with the conversation and become established as an esteemed expert by offering useful information. When users share the answer on social media, the online promotion impact is even more powerful.
Keep Tabs on Your Online Presence
You must first assess your current status before you can build upon it — so conduct an audit of your online brand. Do a search on your name and set up alerts to notify you when you’re being discussed in different forums. Not only will doing so give you an idea of where your target audience is hanging out for brand building purposes, but you’ll also know whether you need to engage in reputation management for bad press.
Establish Ties with Other Strong Brands
As a speaker, you can make or break your brand through your connections with other strong online presences. Start by looking at people you went to college with, your professional network, and your fellow employees. There may be opportunities within these connections, including speaking engagements and the potential to contribute to online forums. In addition, you can benefit from associations with online influencers with whom your target audience interacts.
When establishing your personal brand as a public speaker, your online activities – especially on social media – will be in the spotlight. Therefore, you must carefully consider the tweets you send out, the statuses you update, and the pictures you share. All of these actions affect your brand, even if you think you’re only connecting with immediate friends or followers.
How would you recommend speakers use marketing tools and strategies to build their own brands? Please share your thoughts with all of our readers!
For a complimentary 30-minute consultation on how to build your brand and inspire an audience through events and communications, please contact Brian Duffy by calling 630.427.4235 or by emailing email@example.com