Quick question: what does the reputation of your company or business depend on? If you think it’s your products, marketing campaigns or customer reviews, you’re not wrong… But there’s a very surprising factor many people don’t consider at all: Your company leaders’ personal branding.
Yes, that’s right. A Weber Shandwick survey1 found out that globally, more than 40% of executives attribute their company’s reputation to the reputation of their CEO. Further, Deloitte research2 revealed that nearly 9 in 10 executives counted reputation risk as the highest kind of risk their organization could face.
Would Tesla be the company it is without Elon Musk so indelibly associated with the company in the public mind? What about Jeff Bezos and Amazon? Or, on a slightly less positive note, Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg?
Whether you’re part of the C-Suite in a major organization, or the CEO of your own small business, it’s high time you devoted your attention to build a personal brand. And once you’ve decided to go down that path, here are 5 tips you can use to avoid making common mistakes and to ensure you get it right.
1. Choose who you want to be seen as
No one says you have to be good at only one thing. But, at the same time, for personal branding to work, you need one or two key hooks that people can follow you for. If you write about everything and anything, it’s hard for you to build a reputation and earn a following.
2. Have a content strategy
The only way you’re going to get yourself known in today’s digital age is by embracing social media and posting regularly. But just saying random things on LinkedIn or Facebook isn’t going to help. That’s why you need a good content strategy.
3. Be consistent
Your users need to look forward to you the same way they’d eagerly wait for the latest episode of their favourite podcast or TV show. And this is only possible if you’re consistently out there and posting relevant stuff.
4. Have a personal blog and website
Today is not the time to be a faceless cog in a massive wheel. It’s time to stand out and get noticed. Therefore, consider having a personal website or blog where you can share your thoughts, tips and tricks about your business, and valuable insights only you can give.
5. Have a point of view
None of the above matters if you don’t have your own strong point of view that’s worth something to your followers. A lot of people post very regularly, but their readers will quickly see they’re not making a point, sharing an opinion or offering valuable insights. In that case, the posts are just blurting out some random information or a series of facts that can be found elsewhere. So why post that at all? Instead, if you make your posts stand out with your opinions and insights, you’re guaranteed to build more of a following quicker.
These are by no means the only things you need to keep in mind when it comes to personal branding, but they’re very useful when you’re starting out. We’re going to be writing a lot more about personal branding and reputation management very soon, so make sure you follow our posts on LinkedIn and visit our blog.
1. Weber Shandwick and KRC Research, The CEO Reputation Premium: Gaining Advantage in the Engagement Era
2. Deloitte, The 2014 Global Survey on Reputation Risk