Building a personal brand on the web

Going online to build a brand around yourself is a great idea, if you follow some branding basics, whether you are an entrepreneur or a service provider and even if you are just starting up.

Pic credit: Mukesh Sharma / Wix Media

Not so long ago, if you asked self-employed folk what they did for a living, they would, in a self-effacing manner, focus on the work and diminish the self. Call it an age-old value. Today, it is important to highlight yourself as much as the work that you do. What makes you an expert is equally important as what you deliver. And there is no better time than now to build and grow an online presence and a personal brand.

Taking the example of the Puducherry-based organic farmer, (read link below) with international accreditation, who went online recently, he is seeing remarkable results.

His Instagram account has registered some robust following, with a farmer from as far off as Queensland sharing input and ideas online. Not just that! The organic farmer, who also consults for landscaping projects, now has an online profile ready for prospective clients to view, improving the probability of him landing a new project. What took fifteen years to create in terms of awareness was achieved in less than a fortnight.

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A similar story, in Chennai, unfolds for a Japanese interpreter who has been in the field for over two decades, specialising in nadi-astrology interpretation. Although her audience is not the local market, the online presence has helped cement her status as an expert in the industry. It may be early to calculate the impact of her online presence just yet, but a referral base is sure to build, and considering a captive audience of Indians overseas expressing interest in the divine discovery, there is no guessing how this activity will grow, manifold. Currently, the interpreter has introduced online nadi-astrology, a smart turnaround in the COVID times.

The list of aspiring entrepreneurs wanting to build a brand around themselves online is growing - an English teacher, a nutritionist and an Ayurveda doctor. You can build a personal brand and an online presence, too, with some handy pointers - eight in all (like the proverbial spider's tentacles to help you traverse the worldwideweb (www)):

  1. Do not shy away from talking about yourself. Your business is built around you.

  2. Be specific about your expertise and the services or products that you offer.

  3. Clarify who your services will benefit (target audience).

  4. Back your information up with pictures and videos - action shots!

  5. Testimonials from existing clientele are a huge plus. If you are just starting up, reinforce credentials (point no. 2).

  6. Start a blog. Writing about your industry builds credibility.

  7. Leverage social media platforms like Instagram (the hashtags work wonders). LinkedIn is a superb option as well, working like a smart resume, online.

  8. Finally, take the help of a professional (although you can do it yourself, with easy to use website templates and domain service providers). An expert will get you off to a great start and you can then take over.

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