Editor’s note: This post was written by Pratik Dholakiya, founder of Growfusely, a content marketing agency specializing in content and data-driven SEO. He regularly speaks at various conferences about SEO, Content Marketing, and Entrepreneurship. Pratik has spoken at the 80th Annual Conference of the Florida Public Relations Association, Accounting and Finance Show, Singapore, NextBigWhat’s UnPluggd, IIT-Bombay, SMX Israel, SEMrush Meetup, MICA, IIT-Roorkee, and other major events. As a passionate SEO and content marketer, he shares his thoughts and knowledge in publications like Search Engine Land, Search Engine Journal, Entrepreneur Magazine, Fast Company, The Next Web, YourStory, and Inc42, to name a few. He can found at Twitter @DholakiyaPratik.
We are witnessing a new era in branding: the emergence of personal branding as a means of marketing one’s business. You’ve got CEOs of companies trying to establish personal credibility that rubs off on their company’s brand; there are digital marketing managers out there who are trying to come across as authority figures in their niche to market various products and services, and then there are business owners who sometimes have more visibility than their brands, courtesy of personal branding.
A big reason why people want to build a personal brand is that it is seen as yet another way of boosting visibility of a business, albeit in an indirect manner. It is also seen as a great way of adding to the ‘credibility juice’ that surrounds a particular brand. The saying ‘You are known by the company you keep’ explains the use of personal branding best.
By increasing personal credibility, you are essentially trying to enhance the trustworthiness of your brand by association. And it is working. Forbes has a nice article that serves as a guide to building your personal brand. It talks about the importance of building a personal brand and how you can go about creating an effective one.
One of the better ways of marketing yourself is publishing content on your own blog or on somebody else’s blog/website . It’s a tactic that is devoid of any complication. All you need to do is create useful content and find a home for it.
Let’s see why blogging is a fantastic way to build a personal brand:
It’s Easy to Get a Personal Blog/Website Up and Running
I know what you’re thinking; hiring a website designer or design agency is neither cheap nor easy; what’s more, the process can be complicated and time consuming. While you can hire a designer to work on your project for cheap, why not take a different route?
Enter a website builder.
Pick from a wide selection of website builders available on the market such as MotoCMS or Wix to get your blog up and running in the shortest possible time. You are in charge of the blog design, you decide how it looks, and you pick its functionalities. This means you are more in control of your personal online identity.
The key word here is ‘in charge’. You need to be in charge of how your brand looks and is experienced by its intended audience. This is a huge advantage while using your blog as a tool for personal branding, and it isn’t very difficult to tap into this advantage.
Blogging Acts as a Showcase for Your Talent
By publishing content, you are giving your intended audience the lowdown on your knowledge, skill-sets and expertise. It’s one of the easiest ways of doing so. You are telling your audience that really skilled people like yourself are associated with a particular brand, this revs up the brand’s trust factor like nothing else can.
What is important here is that you write a post that goes viral. Pick a topic that not only showcases your expertise but also something that readers will love going through. It should be useful, relevant, and current – three qualities that make content readable, especially from the personal branding point of view.
It’s Never Too Much
You must have heard about ‘excessive marketing’ being detrimental to the health of your brand identity. Constantly pushing your products and services to your customers through every available means can alienate them so much so that they avoid these with a barge pole. So how do you balance the need for incessant branding with a target audience’s distaste for being overwhelmed with brand messaging?
The answer is blogging.
As you keep posting high quality content on your blog and authority sites in your niche, people will get hooked on your posts. What you are doing is consistently supplying them with valuable information, which will encourage them to follow your work. They will actually expect you to come up with such content regularly. In fact, when it comes to blogging, it’s ‘the more the merrier’; there is nothing like excess content. This helps balance your branding endeavors against the expectations of your audience.
The feedback from blogging is tangible and at times, instantaneous. Say you publish a blog post on Tuesday, incidentally a day when a majority of blog posts are published, you will find that the post has be shared by X number of people with their friends and followers on social media and it has received Y number of comments. What you are seeing in front of you are tangible results and feedback. The shares tell you whether your posts were actually ‘liked’ by readers and the comments section tells you what they actually think about the post.
Ever share, every comment received should be seen as a positive mark for your personal branding efforts. It means your personal identity is being taken to its destination. The journey is on track.
Consistency is Rewarded
Blogging is for keeps, and an activity that rewards consistency. There is no ‘end date’ for blogging. You need to keep at it and keep going strong day in and day out. If you put in consistent efforts, that is regularly publish quality content, you will be suitably rewarded.
The rewards will be in the form enhanced reputation in your niche, and over time your brand will be seen through the prism of this reputation. The best part is you don’t have to worry about competitors who have a better personal brand than you do. If you keep at it, your blogging efforts will more than just pay off, they have the potential of ensuring you go one up over your competitors.
You are missing out on an effective personal branding tactic, if you are not blogging. It can benefit you more than the most vaunted marketing strategies. You put in the necessary effort and there is absolutely no doubt that blogging will deliver the results you are looking for. Blogging isn’t magic, but the great part is it isn’t rocket science either. If you haven’t already started blogging to build your personal brand, it’s time you started doing it.