Self-Branding Strategies Build Gratifying Lives.

Great SEO + ‘Me Too’ Personal Branding ..

Me too art

Great SEO will accomplish nothing (or even lead to negative ‘Me Too’ branding) without a clear focused marketing positioning strategy. A core strategy is the foundation for all personal branding content. A written creative brief is the tool to keep all content on track, consistently driving personal branding content to its niche target audience. But is this what’s typically happening with career branding social media campaigns?

So much social media content is about ‘how social media (itself) is going to impact branding performance’. And the majority these digital marketing articles on ‘tips and steps’ for success are simply regurgitations of the basics we’ve all read before. Why would your niche audience care about ‘Me Too’ content?

The solution is writing about great ideas that tie-back to your core strategy, the core that differentiates you from all others. Write about what excites you, what you are curious about, what puzzle you are trying to solve. Your ongoing personal interest will translate into your audiences’ ongoing interest in your content. Your innovative thinking about your niche space is the key to successful content creation.

See Blue Ocean Strategy slide show


What’s the name of your career segment ladder?

Where’s your personal brand, which rung do you occupy?


Personal Branding Do’s and Do Not’s

Personal branding takes place on social media websites, not exclusively but certainly very significantly. It is also true that your personal branding will be viewed and reviewed by many potential employers or your clients. And your personal brand’s “professionalism” will be reflected in what you create as content for your social sites. The best rule is to keep it “professional” with all social media in your real name, especially your full name.

The following excerpt from an article provides some further detail:

“Having a strong, consistent personal brand will help you land an entry-level job and build the foundation for your career. Gen Y has mastered the cheap and effective Internet medium to network with peers and share ideas through social networking platforms such as Facebook and blogs. But when it comes time to search for a job, personal branding becomes much more important and mistakes can be costly.

The most obvious mistake Gen Y makes is a lack of professionalism on their social networking profiles. It is no secret that employers check candidates’ social networking profiles and are apt to make decisions based on what they find. Inappropriate photographs and conversations are the most commonly cited blunders Gen Yers make that hurt their personal brands. Some other mistakes that may cost Gen Yers the job include:

– Speaking negatively about your current or former employer.

– Not thinking before answering a question.

– Talking only about what you want out of the job.

– Not being prepared with good, thoughtful questions to ask at the end of an interview. ”


Personal Branding: Truth Is Key To Success

Is your personal brand truly authentic? Are you and your personal branding congruent, are you telling the truth about yourself as expressed as a personal brand?  These are the foundational questions that need to be answered in order to own a successful personal brand. And they are questions that require confirmation from your targeted audience – a perspective from the outside looking in at your personal brand.

The following excerpt from an article provides some additional information:

“The most important thing to consider when creating a personal brand for yourself is that “you” are the most important product. The way you position yourself in the marketplace will determine how hard you have to work in the future to get the results you desire. You want to work smart, not hard. You want to attract the right customers and clients that want what you have.

If you’re an entrepreneur, you want to be able to have the freedom to work when you want, and have the freedom to choose the clients you want to work with. If you’re a business owner, you need to realize that your brand and your business are connected. Neither one can truly succeed without the other. So, the success of your brand will depend on how true it comes to the real you and, how well you manage and communicate that image to the marketplace. Either way, you’ll need to know who you are, what you stand for, and what qualities make you unique.

A personal brand is exciting because it tells the world about you, your values, and your beliefs. When properly crafted, your brand will allow your customers to know, like, and trust you. This feeling will build into a relationship between you and your customer, giving them the confidence to expect the same quality experience with you every time. Don’t try to be something that you’re not. Just be authentic and true to yourself. You’ll go much further in long run.”


Post Your Personal Video on

Previously we discussed the power of the a 30 second “elevator pitch” video to quickly convey the essence of your personal brand to your desired targets. Of course, the distribution of a personal video can take many forms, everything from a dvd to uploading on any of the major video hosting sites such as – YouTube,, Vimeo, MegaVideo, Twiddeo and more.

The following is an excerpt from an article by Dan Schawbel:

“There are thousands of different websites that you can leverage to build your own personal brand, but only a few that will give you both the reach and credibility to make a major impact. Here at Mashable , we’ve provided you with a detailed look at how you can build your personal brand on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.  Today, we’ll focus in on the largest video sharing site on the planet, more commonly referred to as YouTube.

With over 120 million U.S. viewers, YouTube is used by President Obama for his weekly State of the Union Address, by universities who share lectures from star academics, and by celebrities such as Miley Cyrus who use it as a lifestream. Aside from the popularity of YouTube, the site exploits the most powerful branding medium of them all, video.

The reason why video is so effective in communicating your personal brand is because your audience will already feel like they’ve met you by the time the video is over.  With video, you get a sense of who someone really is based on their voice, their face and their body motions.  Video can support your branding efforts like no other medium on the web.”


Slide Show – Red Ladder/Blue Ladder

As a follow up to our feature article “Red Ladder/Blue Ladder” we have created a non-narrated slide show that highlights the main points in the article.

or click below for Scribd version

Career Branding

Five Hallmark Characteristics of Leader’s Personal Branding

There may be such a thing as born leaders, but any leader must earn his or her following by words and actions. The hallmark characteristics of strong leaders include; taking risks, accepting tough challenges, speaking out when in disagreement, focusing on being respected verses just being “liked”, being open to honest feedback, and avoiding the use of destructive language.

The following is an excerpt from Brenda Bence’s article that expands on the leader’s personal branding traits:

How Leaders Earn Brand-Loyalty for Life

“All you have to do is look around you to know that brands are powerful. In fact, most people are so loyal to certain brands that they stick with them for life. If brand-name products can evoke that kind of loyalty, why can’t people? Well, they can!

The truth is that we all have a personal brand whether we like it or not. Simply by being ourselves in the work place, others perceive, think, and feel about us in a certain way. The question is whether we have created the personal brand we want. This is especially important for those who hold leadership positions. If you lead others, the way they perceive, think, and feel about you as a leader, in relation to other leaders, can make or break your short-term and long-term success. These “others” might consist of your subordinates, colleagues, superiors, or even entire divisions or corporations.

Your leadership personal brand impacts your image, your reputation, your relationships, and your performance. As a result, it will also impact your overall career and your finances. So, unless you create your desired leadership personal brand consciously, negative perceptions can undermine your best efforts.”


“elevid” is an “elevator video” pitch

The new elevator pitch is an “elevator video” or “elevid” [el-uh-vid] for short.

Traditionally, a “personal branding statement” is the fodder or basis for an elevator pitch as an introduction of a personal brand.

The “elevid” is an “elevator video” pitch that is typically thirty or less seconds in length.

Rumors are flying about Twitter’s upcoming micro-vlog or short form video technology, which will dramatically change the way we all communicate about daily events. Of course, these rumors are also fueled by the release of the iPhone 3G S, and its video taking and direct-to-web uploading capabilities.

It doesn’t take a clairvoyant  to recognize a change from text to short video is coming. What will this mean for the various segments of social networking? Well, for the HR world, it might mean the ability to preview hundreds of select job candidatesin a very short period of time. Of course, getting the right HR person to review your personal brand ‘elevid’ is just the beginning. What happens when a reviewer wants to see more?

A complete program would allow HR managers to simply click a link to view an expanded version of a personal branding video along with a resume and other relevant documentation.

It’s the brave new world of career development and personal branding. The elevid represents just the tip-of-the-iceberg for new forms of social media that are on the way.

Urban Dictionary: Elevid


Steve Byrne (aka SteveTheMarketer) is the Managing Principal of, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Your Face: In Regular Google Search Result

How to get “your photo” in the results of a regular google search. This seems pretty cool, you can create a free google profile account and add your photo. When anybody googles you by your name, hello, they will see your photo right in the regular web search results. No more confusing you with somebody else by the same name. And what a great way to “place a face with a name” for anyone interested enough in you to google you. The following is an excerpt from Daulton West, Jr.’s article

“There are many social media applications that have been around for a while and have been given much press of late, and have gained in popularity.  Be it LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, or some other media, these can be powerful tools for building a personal brand.  When taken together, they begin to form a “composite” view of an individual for telling their unique story that becomes part of a personal brand.

Around April 25, Google enhanced its search results to include a personal picture on a listing that points to an individual’s Google profile.  This innovation highlights a person’s name with an attention-grabbing photo that builds brand recognition by connecting online brand presence with a brand image. “A picture is worth a thousand words” seems applicable here.  People with popular names can now be found more easily in search results.  A personal photo or avatar provides instant recognition that enables the correct “John Smith”, for example, to be located.”


Blogging Your Way to Personal Branding

Why you should begin blogging right away. Everybody knows about blogging to help build a personal brand. But many are resistant to blog because of the seemingly onerous nature of writing something meaningful every day. Of course, this is exactly why it’s an important opportunity to write about what you know about targeting your personal brand’s segmented audience. You will stand out from competing personal brands by producing consistent relevant information.

If you choose the commentary form of blogging, you will be able to google for specific content and then introduce it with your own comments or review. The following is an excerpt from Jeffrey Mitchell’s article that provides many valuable tips and insights for successful blogging.

“The obvious benefit is a chance to build your personal brand and be known as an expert in your chosen field. Your blog updates will help you with Search Engine Optimization, and also assist with the credibility of your business. When you place a link to your blog in your resume, employers will have an in depth understanding of the type of person they are hiring and the expertise you bring. Recruiters will check this information to verify what they think they already know about you.

Blogging is a very personal social media tool; no other tool can provide the same type of value as a regularly maintained blog. The benefits are largely intangible, and there still is exact science to being a successful blogger or even a standard definition of what success means when blogging. Traditionally metrics such as page views are tracked and comments are tracked. These do not always tell the whole story.  Personally, if just one person is helped by the advice articles I write is able to land their dream job, then I have been successful. How you measure your success is entirely up to you. Don’t expect to make a lot of money with your blog unless you promote aggressively! If your motivation is money, there are several other opportunities which are far more lucrative than a blog. Even when being paid for your writing, the amount is so small it would take a massive amount of page views to earn a modest living.”


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