Thursday 9 April 2015


culled from:/

Mistake # 1: Stating A Vague Objective or Not Stating Any At All

This is the first and most common mistake done by people doing personal branding; that is, they do not depict a specific purpose while self branding. This is very important especially if you are striving towards excellence. You need to be very precise and particular in what your ultimate objective is; most importantly, your objective should clearly be portrayed in your personal branding strategy.
‘Jack of all trades’ may see short term success, but not for long. You need to be a master at what you do and it should be explicitly stated in your self-branding campaign. Do not try to be everything at once, as this may plateau your growth at one stage.
If you are branding yourself for the purpose of getting a job, make sure you promote your specialised skills and attributes that make you stand apart from others. In times when there is scarcity of jobs in the market, it may seem like a smart strategy to brand yourself as an all-rounder. However, this strategy is only good for short term. By boasting about all your small and great skills, you may get a job quick but your growth won’t be as quick. So while promoting your pool of general and special skills, it is important that you specify as to which skill or field or area you plan to pursue your career in. There is nothing bad in telling people that you are an all-rounder as long as you tell them about your special attributes. Your main focus should be on latter.
The precise-goal element is even more important for those who are promoting themselves online. The internet is a depth-less ocean with lots of noise. No one is going to hear you unless you try to be everywhere at the same time. First, decide upon your ultimate goal and then promote yourself accordingly.

Mistake # 2: Sharing Incomplete Details

If you are promoting yourself in order to promote any product or service associated with your personality, it is extremely important to share all the relevant details pertaining to the particular product. Incomplete details may portray you as negatively shrewd or an inexpert.
Likewise, if you are promoting yourself and your personality only, for a job or any such intent, then you need to be careful while devising your personal branding strategy. There is a thin line between overpromoting and underpromoting. It is this line that many people fail to identify, hence implementing an ineffective self branding strategy.
An example of overpromoting is updating a status on Facebook every time you shake hands or drink tea with a well known person or celebrity. Do not boast way too much about yourself. Remember the ‘rule of thirds’; a social media rule that says that only one-third of your online statuses and posts should be about you. One-third should be about others interests, preferably these should be shared and taken from other people’s timelines and groups. The last one-third part of your posts should promote your underlying brand.
Likewise, underpromoting is sharing so little information and posts that people don’t even remember what you said last. Don’t brag, but at least let your target audience know of your notable achievements.
Keep posting now and then to stay in touch with your audience. You can wish them on different occasions, share breaking news updates, celebrity gossips or whatever it is that pertains to your underlying brand and your target audience.

Mistake # 3: Being Dishonest In Your Claims

In today’s word of high-tech research and intelligence, you cannot lie much about yourself, especially on any online forum. Just a few clicks and searches on Google, and people can find out in seconds about your lie.
The fact that it is almost impossible to lie about something online and not getting caught does not mean that you should user other forums to spread overly exaggerated information about yourself or your brand. Lying about your knowledge, skills and about your brand may get you a large fan following, however it won’t stay for long. As soon as your fans and audience realize that you are not delivering what you promised, or that you are not what you portrayed yourself to be, your lie-branding strategy may backfire.
Once you lose the trust of your audience, it becomes very difficult and almost impossible to have them follow you again. In today’s highly competitive era, there is no room for such things. People have innumerous options in almost everything. For example, if you are branding a product and promising features that it does not contain, you may make a sales record instantly; however as soon as your customers find out about your fallacies, they will not only decide not to buy it again but may also spread negative word of mouth about it. They won’t give a second thought before switching to your competitor’s product.
Likewise, the job market is bursting with candidates. If you are promoting yourself and boasting about skills that you don’t possess, you may get a good job soon but you may lose it even quicker. As soon your company realizes that you are not what you promised to be at the time of recruiting, they won’t even think for a second before getting your replacement.

Mistake # 4: Not Having Your Own Website

The world we live in is digitalized to an unimaginable extent. From milk to microwave, everything is selling online. That being said, it is imperative that you have your own website. Regardless of whether you are indirectly promoting any other brand or if it is purely personal branding, having a website is important. And since it is personal branding we are talking about, ideally your website’s domain name should be named after you. For example, my website is, likewise it could be
If you are not able to secure the ideal domain name for you, try to get the one that is closest to your name. This will make it easy for you to popularize your website and easy for your users to memorize it, not to mention it will dominate the search results containing your name.
Now the question is: What are you going to do on your website since it is just self-branding that you intend to do? Well, you don’t necessarily have to sell anything on your website. Here are a few things that you can do on your personal website.
  • You can write about yourself and your experiences.
  • You can share news that you think may interest your site’s visitors.
  • You can publish interesting blogs and articles on your website and can also invite other users to share their write-ups and thoughts.
  • You can initiate competitions pertaining to your website’s content.
There is a lot that you can do if you have your own website. Just make sure whatever you do is in consonance with your personal branding strategy and your ultimate objective.

Mistake # 5: Not So Frequently Updated Profile

Personal branding is an ongoing process and this is what many of us fail to understand. Whether you are branding through a website, a social media forum or any other way, it is extremely imperative that you update your profile frequently. Never let your profile go stale or else it may bore your audience. Your audience should have something new to see every time they visit your profile.
If I am one of your fans who follow your profile regularly, and I do not find anything new in my last two visits to your profile, I may think before visiting your profile the third time. And even if I do and yet I don’t see anything new, I may forget about it altogether. Your efforts and hard work that you put in building your profile and branding may go down the drain just because you were busy or somehow unable to update your profile.
You might be thinking how a person can update their profile without having anything new to add to it. Well, you don’t need to wait till you secure a big achievement or a major qualification. It is not your resume that we are talking about. It is your online profile that we are referring to here. You don’t need to write short and specific like you do in your CV. You can mention about all your small and large achievements in your online profile.
Anytime you gain a new experience that you think is worthy enough of adding to your profile, just go ahead and update your profile. Here is a tip! When creating your online profile for the first time, do not write all about yourself. While you must write about your major milestones and accomplishments, reserve some of the trivial information to be added later on. You can then use this information to update your profile in order to stay in touch with your audience.

Mistake # 6: Holding Outdated Information

People who make the mistake of not updating their profile (Mistake # 5) commit the mistake of holding outdated information too. If you have published an article on your website, it is important that the particular article contains all the latest facts. More importantly, you should be available to acknowledge and reply to the comments, if any.
In today’s world of 3G and 4G networks, people are available 24/7 on their social networking websites. Whether it is the news of who won an Oscar or about the speculations regarding the next budget, news is posted and tweeted even before it is spoken out by the news caster. So if you want to survive this highly advanced social networking era, you need to keep yourself and your website and social networking pages up to date.
Suppose you wrote an article about the increasing inflation in the economy. The inflation statistics change every month. As soon as the new numbers are revealed, you can update these in your article by posting the new facts in the comment box. If there are any major changes pertaining to the subject of your write-up, you can publish another one too.
If I visit your Facebook page and the last update made on your page is a week back, I might not even consider exploring your page further.
This is just an example. Whatever is on your website or Facebook page, make sure it is updated. Your audience should be able to look to you to receive the latest up-to-date content. A person who has been sniffing your online presence may wonder why you have not updated the content in a long time which in turn may make you lose another potential client or fan.

Mistake # 7: Not Knowing Your Target Audience

Customization is the need of the contemporary era. Your website, social networking groups, traditional branding strategies and all that you do to promote yourself should be done in accordance to your target audience. If you are planning to target more than one group of audience, you must segregate the promotional content accordingly.
Suppose you are a socialite who wants to promote herself as an ideal woman, an ideal mother, an ideal friend and a perfect wife. This gives you diverse groups of audiences. Here are a few tips on what you can do to cater to all of them in a customized way:
  • You can create a separate page on your website that contains kids’ blogs, animations and gaming stuff.
  • You can have a separate page for mothers and housewives. It may contain recipes, cooking tips, celebrity gossips, interior decoration ideas and so on.
  • Then you can have a page that contains a message wall, where people may dedicate old stories, memories, songs and testimonials to their friends.
Of course you don’t have to be an expert in all such things. You just have to find the right data from an online source and present it in a customized manner. Just make sure whatever facts you post on your page comes from an authentic source. The data that you upload is your responsibility, so ensure its validity and accuracy before sharing it with your audience.

Mistake # 8: Using Inappropriate Social Media Marketing Strategies

Pinterest is more popular among women, LinkedIn is professional network mainly targeted to employers and employees, Tumblr is all the rage among teenager and so on. The point here is that your selection of the social media network and your social Media Marketing Strategies should be in accordance to your target audience.
First, identify your potential audience, and then find out on which social networking forum you will find them the most. Devise your personal branding strategy accordingly. The following facts will help you find the favorite social networking forum of your target audience:
  • Of all the internet users, 67% are on Facebook. Among these, majority are women.
  • Of all internet users, 16% are on Twitter. Unlike the Facebook popularity among women, Twitter Twitter is more popular amongst men.
  • Pinterest is more popular among the female gentry. Women use Pinterest five times more than that used by men.
  • Of all internet users, 6% are on Tumblr, and even these are teenagers and young bloggers.
If you are catering to a large and diverse set of audience, go for Facebook. It is the safest and most commonly used audience. From 8 to 80, people of all ages, gender, preferences and communities can be found on Facebook.

Mistake # 9: Exhibiting Inconsistent and Negative Behaviour

People value consistency. Whatever you do should be in consonance with your objective plus you should always stay consistent in your thoughts and opinions. If you taking a stance regarding something, make sure you stick to it. Don’t falter or present shaky opinions.
For example, if you are against kids using Facebook, stick to your standpoint at all times. However, it does not mean that you become aggressive or excessively rigid. Be open to what others have to say, acknowledge and appreciate their say even if it is against your stance, show some flexibility, encourage others to come forward and give their opinions and make sure their opinion is valued; but amidst all this, don’t forget what your stance is unless there is a very sold reason or need to do so.
If you change your opinion too often, people will start to doubt your credibility. Your voice will lose its impact which in turn will affect your personal brand. While it is very important for you to stay open, flexible and positive to other’s opinions, never tail off your underlying belief. Your articles, blogs and whatever it is that is part of your personal branding strategy should represent your viewpoint and attitude.
This was all about consistency, but there is another thing that you need to portray while promoting yourself online; that is, positive behaviour. Regardless of which social networking platform you use, once you post any content, be prepared to receive positive as well as negative comments. Now, it is very important that you do not delete any negative comment your post gets. Doing so may hold you guilty in the eyes of your audience. The best strategy to handle such situations is to defend your standpoint shrewdly and optimistically.

Mistake # 10: Using Inappropriate Form of Communication

You cannot use terms like “dude” or “pal” when communicating with old age people. You cannot use slang or overly friendly language when communicating with elders and senior citizens. Doing so may offend them which in turn may cause a devastating effect on your personal brand.
Likewise, you cannot address kids and young ones as “sir” or “madam”. If you use too much of a formal language with them, they may get bored soon. You need to be a bit witty, humorous and easy-to-talk to while communicating with teenagers and kids, or else you may lose their interest. It is very important that you use the appropriate tone and terms while interacting with your audience.
That being said, it is not only age that you should consider while thinking about the right form of communication, occupation matters too.
  • When interacting with a housewife, you need to use a bit warm, affable and gossip-like tone. A compliment or two would add a nice touch to the overall communication.
  • The complete opposite would be when your target audiences are businesspeople and high profile corporate executives. You need to choose formal terms and a professional mode of communication.
  • When chatting with kids or youngsters, adopt a bit witty and friendly tone.
In a nutshell, you must modify your style of communication in accordance to the age and occupation of the person you are interacting with.


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