Personal branding is, for some people, a description of the
process whereby people and their careers are marked as brands.
It has been noted that while previous self-help management
techniques were about self-improvement, the personal branding
concept suggests instead that success comes from self-packaging.
Further defined as the creation of an asset that pertains to a
particular person or individual; this includes but is not limited to
the body, clothing, appearance and knowledge contained within,
leading to an indelible impression that is uniquely distinguishable.
The term is thought to have been first used and discussed in a 1997
article by Tom Peters.
“Your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in
the room” - Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon
“Personal branding is about managing your name — even if you don’t
own a business — in a world of misinformation, disinformation, and
semi-permanent Google records. Going on a date? Chances are that
your “blind” date has Googled your name. Going to a job interview?
Ditto.” - Tim Ferriss, Author of the 4-Hour Work Week
“All of us need to understand the importance of branding. We are
CEOs of our own companies: Me Inc. To be in business today, our
most important job is to be head marketer for the brand called You.” -
Tom Peters in Fast Company
It’s a Unique Value Proposition.
It’s all about self-packaging.
It’s the innovation of an asset.
Begs Emotional Portability.
Should be results oriented.
411 on Personal Branding
A fabrication of a persona.
Always seeking to serve.
Based in authenticity.
Very specific and targeted.
About getting results.
A Personal Brand
Our personal brand must
be based on authentic
connection, especially in
the nonprofit arena. Why?
If our professional
performance is called to
account, our brand will
Our ability to do what we
say we’re going to do and
then keep doing it
dependability and creates
brand loyalty for us and
for our organizations.
Three C’s of Personal Branding
2. Craft A Statement (Innovate)
1. Know Thyself (Learn)
How Do We Get Started?
• Take a personality assessment or two (i.e.
• Identify the top 5 adjectives that describe you.
THIS IS NOT ABOUT JOB SKILLS.
• Ask friends and colleagues to do the same for
you. Do these line up?
• Answer three questions for your audience:
• Who Am I?
• What Do I Offer The World?
• What’s The End Result? Goal?
“I dig personal branding, and I naturally
bring out the best in others. Driven by my
passion for learning and strategic
innovation, I offer a talent for designing and
delivering unique, world-class personal
development training that culminates in
authentic, sustainable brands that get
Aaron’s Branding Statement
#Driven, #avid #learner,
#strategicinnovator. #Design and
#deliver #worldclass #personal
Aaron’s Branding Statement on Twitter:
• If what we are saying doesn’t promote or welcome connection,
we are alone in our efforts to influence others. What does this
mean for nonprofit professionals?
• If we display low levels of competence in communicating our
brand by what we do, say, or don’t do or say, we will have a hard
time convincing donors and/or other agencies to trust us in the
• Our consistency in communicating effectively with management,
peers, vendors, donors, and clients will make or break our long-
term reputation in the nonprofit world. Our world is just too small
to take that risk.
Remember the Three C’s?
Personal Brand Communication Venues
Which Happens First?
Amber Rae with Unreasonable Institute, says this of personal branding in
• Be Yourself
• Unlock Your Personal Story
• Tap into personal and organizational convictions
• Street cred comes with authenticity in sharing your challenges, mistakes,
• Be concrete
• Be direct
Survey Says: It Doesn’t Matter!
• The closer you are
to aligning these
pieces, the more
authentic you will
feel and appear.
• Why is this so
• Where is your
spent as a
Personal Brand Communications
LinkedIn is considered the top online resource for the professional
communication of your personal brand and your nonprofit career.
-Your brand statement should go in your Summary section when it is
-Never send an invitation to connect without a personal message
and don’t send an invite to someone you don’t know. Why?
-Endorsements should be relegated to your direct professional
experience with your connections. Competence!
-Punctuation issues, grammatical errors, no photo, and an
incomplete profile tell the world you really don’t pay attention to
details, your brand, or your career.
Twitter is fast becoming the venue of choice for nonprofit brand
communications and is a growing choice for recruiters scouting for
-Avoid foul language and personal venting/ranting on Twitter.
Consistency matters here, too.
-Know that other nonprofit leaders may be reading your tweets, so
tailor your messages with that in mind. Personal pages count here.
-5 tweets a day is the professional standard/limit.
-joining nonprofit chats on Twitter can help boost your ideas and help
sharpen your targeting skills on Twitter. Go here:
Print communication will always be around in one form or another,
even in this “digital conversion” culture.
-Make sure you have plenty of proofreaders before sending a
document through any channel. Remember that anything can be
copied and printed, even without your permission.
-Any document representing you and/or your nonprofit needs to be
above reproach. Grant applications and other important filings can
make or break your budget and your individual and corporate brand.
-Don’t bash other organizations in print for making mistakes, even if
it is done “gently”. When it’s your turn, you’ll be sorry. Opinionated
emails, angry outbursts online and even “offline conversations” can
always be printed-ALWAYS.
Showing up and networking will always represent the purest
form of who we are and will display our authenticity…or lack
-Be aware of your shortcomings and endorse your strengths.
-Have an answer to the areas where you need growth-a façade
won’t help anyone.
-Have a plan before you meet. Rehearse. Practice. Practice some
-Have a spirit of service in mind when you are dealing with ALL
matters. It will always bear fruit in the long run.
-Dress according to the code of the event-stepping out may bite
you…in an uncomfortable place.
-Unearned intimacy kills future relationships
• Your brand is like a “living document”,
because it’s about YOU. Results will
come as you continue to “package”
• Soliciting feedback from those around
you will help you distinguish your top
brand attributes and uncover your
authentic personal brand…
• What do you feel are my greatest
strengths that have most benefited the
• What was my most important contribution
to the company?
• What things do you know you can always
rely on me to deliver?
• What would you say are my top brand
• What did you learn from me that helped
you do your job better?
How Do I Know It’s Working?