A personal brand statement is a narrative. It describes who you are in short and concise language and answers the following questions:
- Who are you?
- What do you stand for?
- Whys should others care?
I was invited to speak to a group of students at San Jose State University who are involved in PRSSA. Many students ask me, “What Does PRSSA Stand for?” and I usually laugh. It is not the easiest of acronyms to remember. Nonetheless, it stands for the Public Relations Student Society of America.
Abbreviated Transcripts Below.
Building a personal brand starts with understanding your purpose. What’s interesting about this is that this is the same questions and approach that you would ask yourself if you were building a brand for the company you work for.
You might have heard the word narrative in various PR circles. A narrative is a brand statement that answers the questions I mentioned above. A personal brand statement is all about you. It’s not where you live, how many years of experience you have or what college you attended. It is a statement meant to differentiate you from all of the other students at your school and quite frankly, globally.
It is a very competitive environment today. Recruiters and hiring managers don’t just check their emails to see if you sent them your resume.
So I have some slides I want to talk to you about and I am hoping that it causes you to think differently and how you might position yourself in the marketplace, build your personal brand, and prepare yourself for a new career in marketing, public relations or journalism.
In essence you are all competing with each other when it comes to building your personal brand, getting the phone call for the new job or even being invited to interview for an internship.
What I like to tell my students is that LinkedIn isn’t a place not to manage your resume but to manage your reputation. The recruiting industry today spends millions of dollars buying licenses from LinkedIn so that they can source the platform to find candidates. the first thing that they see after searching within LinkedIn is your profile photo and your headline.
If they are interested, they will click through to see your full LinkedIn profile. From there the first thing that they will see is your summary. This is where you need to think about building a personal brand statement.
One of the fundamental things I want you to take away from this presentation is that the phrase “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know” will only take you so far in your career. I argue that it’s not “who you know, but who knows you” and that’s why it’s critical that you build your personal brand, have a point of view and don’t be afraid to take risks.
Of course, you can’t forget that you need the basic social media skills to be successful working in the public relations and/or marketing industry. At some point, you will have to show that you have some knowledge of the field that you are working in.