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Branding Tools for the Job Market
Wednesday, September 05, 2012

A brand is anything you can recognize and relate to a certain idea or persona. A brand could pertain to anything from a company to a product or a person. When a cow gets branded, that label is there for life and that's exactly what all good brands aim for: lifetime recognition.

You might think that your brand would be equal to that of the company you work for. This is true but only partially. If you're unemployed, your brand is what you make it and how you sell it. Your goal once establishing it is to retain it no matter what company hires you thereafter. The better your brand, the more recognizable you are as YOU and your name will be associated whatever images and ideas you've attached to it.

Here are some tools to help get your online presence noticed and, most importantly, remembered:

Splash around: Splash pages are essentially a webpage composed of an image and some links that represents you. It's a social media profile in a nutshell. What's great about splash pages is that they provide a way to show yourself in a quick pitch. The links give it some depth like a resume and the image can be either of you, something you created, or something relevant to your field. Splash pages are the one-stop shop to you.

Create a chronicle: Keep track of yourself and give yourself a background story. Just like how company's have history's so you do and people want to be able to see where you've come from and where you've gotten. Brands are all about telling their story now because it's what makes them interesting. People want to know what's behind the front. Social media makes it easy to do this. You can start with a Tumbler or blog. Most blogs even incorporate Twitter feeds. Active and engaging feeds will attract followers and get your name out there.

Partake in Pinning: If you don't already have one, Pinterest is a great way to visually showcase your interests. As the fastest growing social media site, people everywhere are pinning away. As we've seen with Facebook's shift to the Timeline interface, the user experience is becoming a more visual one. To utilize Pinterest for personal branding purposes, create boards pertaining to your industry such as books, news, people, places you've gone for work (conventions, events, etc.), and infographics. If you have a hard time staying active on social media, Pinterest has been said to be fairly addicting. Try it and see for yourself.

The key thing to remember about creating social media sites and profiles is that they can't be left to go stale. Once people lose interest, it's hard to gain it back. You need to pick up speed and gain momentum. To get recognition that lasts a lifetime, it takes a nearly that to build and maintain it.