We all know what a strong brand can do for a business, but what can one do for you personally? How do you define one and market it to your clients, employer, or potential employer? We asked branding expert and Washington DC Graphic Designer Cassie Burke to share with us the dos and don'ts for establishing your own personal brand.
Check out her thoughts below and contact her here for help creating your own suite of branding materials including business cards, letterhead, and stationary!
Personal branding helps to present you as a prepared, unique, creative, and enthusiastic package. It shows that you take pride in yourself, your skills, and what you have to offer your clients, or your place of work. Taking the time to present yourself in a careful and purposeful way shows that you are positive, excited and ready to contribute! Standing out through your identity package – correlating resume, cover letter, business card & leave behind! – is the first step.
Do: Know your audience – the biggie!
Does your company, client, or type of business want someone that is on trend? Someone that is creative? Or someone that is well put together and efficient? Sending the right type of message is important - It can be just as detrimental to appear as though you spent too much time on your identity package as it can be to have spent too little time presenting yourself well. A person in consulting needs to relay their ability to do quality work in an efficient manner, while a person in events needs to relay their ability to be creative, personable, and organized. Believe it or not, you can give these impressions and communicate these skills through the identity package that is uniquely yours.
Do: Find the balance between you and your skills
Whether you are being interviewed by clients, a company, or self-promoting, people choose to work with others that they ultimately like to spend time with. Don’t be afraid to throw a little personality into your identity package – it will likely make you attractive to just the right type of company or clientele for you. This can be achieved through a logo, color, or even out of the ordinary wording.
Do: Dream Big
Just as we are told to dress for the career that we want, it is just as important to present ourselves on paper this way! It is impressive to have a dream career, future goals, and even more impressive when you take the time to present yourself this way.
Do: Make sure your items are just as appealing in black & white – you never know how people will be printing!
Do: Keep it simple. This piece of advice never fails!
Don’t: Use more than two fonts. Sticking to two fonts, and generally also two colors, then playing with the size, alignment and scale of those fonts is the way to go.
Don’t: Make it difficult to find important information – most importantly your name and contact information!
Don’t: Put off putting your best foot forward any longer. Help others see you and your skills for the unique service that they are. Each time I update my business card, resume, or portfolio, I am instantly recharged and inspired to be doing what I love. Not only is this a great thing personally, but working with someone that is passionate about their career is much more fun than someone just doing their day job!
- Steph, Cassie, & The Fortique Team