Here’s how to create and grow your personal brand

By Nsikak John

“We all have the ability to be a brand and cultivate our power to stand out and be unique. This uniqueness draws people to our product, our services, or even just our message. Your personal brand should be about who you are and what you have to offer.” – Laura Lake

Karl Lagerfeld, Beyonce, Adebola Williams, Donald Trump, Mark Zuckerberg, Princess Diana, Nelson Mandela and Ngozi Okonjo Iweala. These names all have something in common: A distinctive personality.

Investing in your uniqueness and personality, especially as a brand, is described as personal branding. Personal brands have iconic, influential and long lasting connections with people.

Nigerian media entrepreneur and co-founder of RED Media, Adebola Williams is almost always spotted donning his red hat and white kaftan. Mark Zuckerberg wears multiple versions of the same t-shirt; a method of self-presentation that he has found to be beneficial to him in his service to over 1billion humans. These are clearly conscious efforts and practices to shape the perceptions people have about them.

So what does it take to create an impactful personal brand identity?

The first step is to find your authentic “voice”. Authenticity rules! Discovering who you are is the first step to building a genuine and long-lasting personal brand. Think about who you are, what you stand for, and what value you offer.

An objective of personal branding is to attract a desired audience or followership. People only look out to connect with you when you are desirable. You therefore need to consider how you would like to be perceived by others; especially your target audience. To be social by design would be the next step.

Thanks to the internet and social media, you can largely control what people see and hear about you. Use social media space to increase discoverability, speaking engagements and interaction. Also make time to understand what successful people in your niche are doing or saying. Someone somewhere would be searching about you in your career so have a professional purpose in your daily narratives.

Personal branding is a means of self-disclosure. While building your personal brand is essential, managing your reputation is equally as important. Your behavior online and in public domain is a reflection of who you are and what you stand for.

Celebrities mostly use a concept called the front stage/back stage behavior. The front stage behavior is used to influence the public domain in a good manner or build a certain persona for how they would like others to view them while the back stage behavior is a particular way a person acts when they are not in public domain.

Some of the world’s greatest personalities are those who have been able to discover their voice and mastered the skill of presenting their vision by building and nurturing an appealing personality.


Nsikak John is the creative lead Kahn Academy

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Written by Kemfon Decade

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Yes, thank you for bringing in Laura Lake, a long standing friend and a good voice on personal branding. I always believe that we are our own mouth piece

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