When the media talks about popular celebrity Zendaya, most individuals immediately think of a beautiful, inspiring woman. Positive words like “empowering” and “classy” seem to float around her name, as it travels throughout magazines, social media, and drama channels. On the other hand, when the media talks about someone like Logan Paul, mostly negative thoughts or phrases are found in the dialogues surrounding him. These ideals and words that we associate with people are the result of their personal brands. Although we often tie “personal branding” strictly with celebrities, influencers, or people engulfed in the limelight, it is just as imperative for college students like us to think about our personal brands and how to display them!
A couple of days ago, AMA hosted a “Personal Branding Workshop” which was led by the company Altria. Throughout this workshop, AMA members got to learn the key components about creating their own personal brand, as well as chat with marketing professionals about branding in general. After the workshop, I know many members were inspired to brainstorm, create, and modify their own personal brands!
So, where to begin?
What is personal branding?
Personal branding is a prescribed image or impression that an individual creates in the mind of others. You are in a sense, marketing yourself to the world!
Why do we need personal branding?
Through personal branding, you are tying all your skills, passions, morals, and goals together, and gifting it to all those you meet. It is in a sense, the blueprints for who you are, what you believe in, and the things you want to accomplish in life. By displaying a clear personal brand, potential employers get a better picture of who you are, thus making you more marketable.
Where do I start?
As you start preparing for that dream job of yours, or perhaps that internship you are hoping to land for the summer, try asking yourself some reflective questions like…
• How do I want to portray myself?
• What are my values, skills, and passions?
• What makes me different from others?
• Am I staying true to myself??
In my opinion, the most important aspect of personal branding (no matter how cheesy it sounds), is to remain true to yourself. People can usually sniff out those who put on a façade, and it often leaves a bitter taste in their mouth. It is so crucial to come off as genuine and establish a sense of trust with friends, acquaintances, and even future employers. So, go out there, discover who you are, and let everyone see it!
By Sarah Tanguma