After more than a year had passed, the whole personal branding has changed a lot. Businesses are now converging new trends and social media in the marketplace, making it the new blueprint of marketing. These past few years were a feat for social media and branding alike as there were different social media campaigns that rocked the Internet-sphere.
The principles of personal branding is still inherent though the marketing ideas and techniques had changed.
Marin Lindstrom, branding expert and author of ‘Brandwashed’ and ‘Buyology’, defines clearly what branding is about:
“Be 100% transparent. Nothing less. The consumer needs to know what you know about them. Furthermore, they must be told exactly how you intend to use the information. If they don’t like what they see, they need a fair and easy way to opt out.” Martin mentioned this in his brand ethics list.
Now that the tides have changed, and indeed, innovations in technology have made it possible to reach out to your audience— it’s time to check out if these predictions are right.
A. Paperless Resumes
They say: LinkedIn will replace resumes and job boards
I say: You got that right!
Statistics right off the bat at Linkedin.com: (http://press.linkedin.com/about):
- As of June 30, 2012 (the end of the second quarter), professionals are signing up to join LinkedIn at a rate of approximately two new members per second.
- As of August 2, 2012, LinkedIn operates the world’s largest professional network on the Internet with more than 175 million members in over 200 countries and territories.
- LinkedIn members did nearly 4.2 billion professionally-oriented searches on the platform in 2011 and are on pace to surpass 5.3 billion in 2012.
They are still correct that networking and the use of social graph would help people in tapping their connections online. Although the concept of asking for one’s own URL is still a bit far-fetched in some parts of the world, Linkedin is definitely improving its own platform to get there. The professional social site is making a tremendous leap in the Internet job search and recruitment.
B. Social Professional
They say: Your personal and professional lives will converge
I say: Hit that one again! (Are you Nostradamus or something?)
With a roster of 850M users worldwide, who could possibly deny that Facebook is the biggest thing on the Internet? Of course Twitter wouldn’t give up without a fight, with over 465M accounts tweeting about 175M tweets a day.
We can’t deny that Facebook and Twitter are clashing their stats with who’s the most favorite and useful in the social media stage. However, we can’t also deny that numerous countries are now fortifying their Anti-Cyber Crime Laws to fend off offenders.
What you post, share, like, tweet, and retweet reflect your personality as a whole. This could also be used by companies to bait you into patronizing their products or services. Inbound marketing utilizes the convenience of free advertisement to lure in potential prospects. Like me, like you. All of us are potential customers— because we’re online, and on Facebook. We all know how to use social media. The big difference is this: some know how to tap the endless potentials of this social arsenal, and you don’t.
C. Mandatory Check
They say: The recruitment process will have a mandatory online presence background check.
I say: Negative.
Since inbound marketing is something most people are still unaware of, chances that these mandatory checks wouldn’t be employed unless if you’re aiming for a position in the Internet realm. Still, it wouldn’t hurt to tidy up your Facebook profile; make your party photos and semi-nude pics private from prying eyes, and manage your friends’ lists to avoid spies. Anything you post may be used against you— whether it’s a simple nude baby picture or that drunk pic of you showing off your cleavage on the webcam.
D. Personal Branding
They say: Online influence will be a determining factor of whether you get a job
I say: Ping! Correct!
If you’re aiming for a freelancing career, better sign up at various social networking sites, get yourself your own blog, and start sharing online. Brush up on social etiquette and befriend anyone who follows you back on Twitter. You’ll be able to climb your way up the social ladder without stepping on anyone— whether literally or figuratively speaking. Freelancers need their own spotlight; working online requires online presence. Sell yourself.
E. Relevance or Significance?
They say: Relevancy will become our greatest challenge
I say: Nailed it!
They emphasized more on being relevant to one’s niche or category. They stressed that it is important to go with the marketplace’s pace. Brand consultant Martin Lindstrom shares the same ideal in his post, “Context: We All Love a Story”.
“Paper, metal, software, lenses… no longer are such materials mere components. A brand alliance strategy fits them into a product story that is relevant to the human in all of us.”
Making yourself useful, making your product useful, makes you relevant AND significant to the ever-growing business industry. You’re not there to make yourself famous; you’re there to cater to the needs of the people. If you can’t beat them; join them. Be a part of a whole. Accept the business-to-business-to-consumer (B2B2C) brand alliance strategy.
Four out of five predictions are correct and applicable this year. I hope this article helped expose the current situation of personal branding. ‘Till next year!
Alexis Trinidad is the Head of Outreach for SEOteky, an inbound marketing agency in the Philippines. SEOteky promotes guest posting, blogger outreach, conversation marketing as an SEO strategy for small to medium-scale businesses and digital marketing agencies alike. Give some love via Twitter @iamthefuehrer