With the uncertainty of the past year and a half and an even more uncertain rest of the year, it can be tempting to put off any new brand-building or brand redefining work until things settle down. But the way the world has shifted is providing new and improved opportunities for anyone to use both in-person and virtual work to make a brand the best it can be. In this three-part series, we will take a look at online and offline strategies for how to define, build, and grow any personal brand. First off, here are some solid ideas for defining a new or existing brand in these uncertain times.
1) Video meetings with mentors.
Hopefully you have a mentor (or two!) whom you really trust to have your personal brand’s best interests in mind. Perhaps it is someone more advanced in the industry, or maybe it is an expert in brand-building. Whoever your trusted mentor is, ask for a videoconferencing meeting to discuss your goals, both short and long term. They might have useful insight in how to go about achieving those goals, or they may be able to help you articulate your own plans in more detail. Use the experts you already know to help! Video meetings are a safe bet, no matter the external public health circumstances.
2) In-person coffee dates.
Keeping public health and everyone’s personal safety in mind, in-person coffee dates are also a smart bet for brand-building strategy. Perhaps these meetings are also with trusted mentors who can help with goal-setting and achievement, or maybe these coffee dates are to build new relationships that can help a personal brand thrive. Consider coffee shops with outdoor seating in nice weather, and be willing to adjust to maintain the other person’s comfort and safety. With in-person meetings under the current circumstances, consent and open communication is key.
3) Attend outdoor events.
This summer and fall, more and more creatives and venues are strategically employing the many available outdoor venues to create networking and learning opportunities that also meet the latest safety guidelines. Perhaps a local event might inspire similar work your own personal brand might tackle, or maybe networking with others can launch creative collaborations in your city. Check out what outdoor events are happening near you and think outside of the box for how to use them to define your brand.
4) Use social media.
One of the most brilliant aspects of social media is that it can be used from anywhere at any time. Social media can be used to create new connections for your personal brand-building endeavors, and it can also be used to help hone a brand strategy. Follow some personal branding experts on Twitter, or consider watching some YouTube content about it. Don’t let concern about the current state of events keep you from learning a new skill or connecting with someone new.
5) Take online courses.
Similarly, there are hundreds and hundreds of available online courses that can help boost your brand-building skills or develop a new niche. LinkedIn Learning and Coursera are great places to start searching for new online courses that can teach how to fill any knowledge gaps you have or remind you of what you already know. Specialized courses also look great on social media platforms and websites. Time will pass regardless of the state of the outside world; use this time to your benefit, even if you feel safest indoors.
These five online and offline strategies for learning how to build a personal brand by carefully defining it will have your brand progressing regardless of the world’s uncertainty. With a personal brand that has begun to be defined using these safe strategies, we can next move on to building and growing.