There are so many opportunities to hone your personal brand and it doesn’t have to be cheesy or overhyped. What it does need to be is CLEAR. Once you have that clarity, you can run with it! So where to? And how do you spread your message?
Brand Your Email
Consider creating a custom email domain and email address. Custom email addresses like Anders@Kumara.com or Sara@SaraJJones.com are less likely to be sorted into junk mail or nonessential folders, thereby increasing the odds your outreach will make it to its destination.
Try GoDaddy as an affordable option for purchasing domain names. Wix also offers this service, but fair warning, you could lose access to your domain if you switch web builders.
Brand Your LinkedIn URL
Basic professional polish demands a custom LinkedIn URL. Make sure you remove the alphabet soup after your name. If your name is taken or you want to further solidify your brand, consider adding your area of expertise, such as JaneRenfroTravelWriter or GarySanchezDesign.
Brand Your LinkedIn Headline
Your LinkedIn headline should also incorporate your branding statement along with a few relevant keywords. For example: Lead Staff Software Engineer at TechCo is limiting and doesn’t speak to a value offering.
Instead, opt for general functional scope + value offering + (sometimes) for whom, such as Sr. Software Engineer/Architect innovating products and solutions in Agile environments for Fortune 50 companies.
Another option, lots of keywords: Award-Winning Chief Medical Officer | Healthcare Executive | Addiction Medicine Programs | Emergency Medicine.
Brand Your LinkedIn Photo
Include a photo zoomed in on your face for your in LinkedIn profile picture. You can use Photofeeler to select the best photo and Profile Pic Maker to create a background that helps your photo pop, especially if your chosen photo’s background is cluttered.
Consider echoing our brand colors in your apparel or background color. Choose clothes that reflect your brand and target clients, partners, or industry.
Brand Your LinkedIn Banner
A custom LinkedIn banner can also improve your personal brand. Create a custom LinkedIn banner using Canva, GIMP, Photoshop, Illustrator, etc.
Don’t leave that boring gray banner and avoid the default banner suggestions. They’re all over LinkedIn and won’t help you stand out or align with your unique brand. Best case, your banner bolsters your brand — an image of you speaking, a picture of you hard at work, or stylized object shots in colors that echo throughout your branding pieces.
Brand Your Media Files and Featured Section
Add media to your LinkedIn Featured section and the Media sections aligned with each position. Apple Clips is great for recording quick videos and easily inserting captions to improve content reception and retention.
Brand Your Keywords
From a resume/LinkedIn content perspective, use JobScan or ResyMatch to run raw content through the system. If reports come out with on-theme keywords, you’re probably in good shape in terms of keeping the narrative aligned with your brand. If not, you have some work to do!
Opening your resume with a target title and including a keyword bank can solidify your brand. Consider adding subtle shading to reinforce brand colors, while remaining ATS friendly.
Brand Your Online Footprint
Potential partners and hiring authorities will search for additional social proof beyond LinkedIn to find out more about you and what you bring to the table. Creating your own online portfolio or website can elevate your standing significantly.
Wix and WordPress are free and easy sites that can quickly improve search results. Make sure the web content and themes reinforce your brand messaging, including color schemes, photos, video excerpts, and more.
Don’t post your resume on your LinkedIn profile or website. This decreases likelihood of outreach and makes it more difficult to customize messaging on “living,” evolving content like your resume and LinkedIn profile. Instead use fresh content, post articles/blogs on your field/industry, and create a web bio that states your value offering and lists career highlights.