The Most Important Personal Branding Tool: Authenticity

When building a personal brand, being authentic on social media will be the ultimate key.

In today’s fast-paced technological world, the importance of growing one’s personal brand is growing more paramount. A personal brand that is clear, consistent and engaging enables both individuals and companies to present themselves in the best possible light to potential employers, consumers, and connections.

However, with so many people working to cultivate the best possible representations of themselves for social media, it’s easy to become too packaged, which leads to a personal brand appearing invented and contrived. This is why it’s important to maintain authenticity on social media.

Whether you’re a student pitching potential employers, an individual creating a business-ready portfolio, or someone just beginning to explore social media, creating an authentic and active personal brand will ultimately be the key to showing others your potential.

Here are three tips to help keep your brand authentic, fresh and consistent:

  1. Transparency: Sometimes, a bad day is a just that; a really awful day. Sugarcoating experiences in life to primarily showcase only the happiest moments is not realistic, and others going through life with their own problems know this. While no one appreciates a twitter profile that is only complaining or negativity, acknowledging that sometimes not everything goes to plan  in life is a graceful way of remaining transparent with your brand. Remember: Perfection is usually just an illusion, and sometimes we all make mistakes, spill our coffee cups, or forget our cell phones.

  2. Consistency: The primary purpose of your personal brand should be clearly and consistently demonstrated across all different social media platforms. While highlighting other skillsets is important and understandable, if your Twitter profile calls your job description Finance and Data Analysis expert and your Facebook page points out that you currently work in a Human Resources position, this demonstrates there is something inconsistent and therefore detrimental to your brand’s followers. Potential employers and networking contacts value a clear definition of your personal brand, and consistency is key to achieving this definition.

  3. Gratitude: Often, social media platforms and personal branding has a very individualized or self-centered viewpoint. While it makes sense to promote oneself and one’s accomplishments, over-sharing about how wonderful you are risks appearing conceited. The fact is that everyone reaches personal goals and achievements because of collaborating with others. Gratitude to others for the guidance or support you have received is an original and thoughtful way to showcase your connections to your community. As a community, we build ourselves up the most when we help others to grow and thrive as well.

Branding one’s business is always a tricky art of balancing professional skills and personality. By emphasizing authenticity of your personal brand on social media by remembering to be transparent, consistent and grateful, employers and connections will be able to understand your true potential. Keep authenticity in mind when considering personal branding, and don’t be afraid to share both your strengths and weaknesses honestly on social media.