If you want to be successful, it’s important to have a strong personal brand since this will let people know who you are and what you’re good at.
You don’t need to be famous to have a personal brand. You can still promote your skills and abilities, no matter who you are. We’ve found some great examples of people with strong personal brands, to give you some inspiration for creating your own.
In this post, we’ll explore some examples of personal branding from different professional service industries, including finance, architecture, and marketing.
Our research has found there are four powerful techniques for personal branding. We will look at how experts have used these platforms to get ahead.
a. Content marketing (blogs, articles and more)
If you’re looking to share your professional expertise with the world, one of the best ways to do it is through educational content like blog posts, magazine articles, and videos. This type of content is designed to teach people useful skills and lessons related to your industry, and it can be hugely effective in helping you build up your reputation and grow your business.
b. Writing an authoritative book
If you want to grow your personal brand quickly, one of the best things you can do is write a book. Our research showed that experts who wrote authoritative books on their industries tended to rise in prominence more quickly than others.
c. Speaking engagements
If you are a visible expert in your field, speaking engagements can be a great way to get in front of an audience of industry leaders and influencers.
d. Specialization in a niche
The trend you will notice in the personal branding examples below is that they are all specialists to some degree. This is not a coincidence. Our research shows that the fastest-rising experts specialize. Our research also shows that buyers value specialization most.
1. Alan Weiss, PhD
Alan Weiss is a highly respected figure in the consulting industry. He provides advice to other consultants and is highly regarded as an author and speaker. Currently, his clientele consists of Fortune 1000 companies such as The New York Times Corporation, Mercedes Benz, GE, Hewlett-Packard, and Merck.
How did Weiss build his profile to its current status? He did it by sharing his knowledge and expertise across many channels, instead of hoarding it like many consultants do.
He has used four main techniques to make himself more visible as an expert and to build his own personal brand.
Content that appeals to different people helps create a strong lead generation framework.
2. Jay Baer
By being visible online, and sharing your company’s content, you can build thought leadership and grow your business. Jay Baer, the president of Convince and Convert, a digital marketing consulting firm, helps his clients, which include Salesforce and Oracle, to employ content marketing strategies. He is an active blogger and social media presence, and he also hosts webinars and co-hosts the podcast Social Pros. He stresses that content marketing efforts usually have a positive effect on each other. For example, if you are visible online and sharing your company’s content, you are likely to gain more respect as an expert in your field and grow your business.
Baer states that their social media posts bring people to their blog where they may subscribe to their newsletter or book them for speaking. Using content marketing as a strategy can help increase an expert’s profile and allow them to reach a larger audience.
Jay Baer invests a lot of time in speaking engagements, averaging about 60 events a year, in addition to dozens of webinars. By speaking to key industry audiences, Baer has built his visibility, spread his ideas, and forged direct connections with decision makers around the world.
When experts choose which speaking engagements to do, they should consider engagements that will put them in front of people who are interested in what they have to say and who are relevant to their field.
3. Ted Sarenski
Ted Sarenski, an expert in financial planning and wealth management at Blue Ocean Strategic Capital, understands the value of speaking engagements. He learned this quickly.
He says that in the early 2000s, he was on the executive planning committee for the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. They started a conference on financial planning and they needed someone to speak on social security, so he said he would do it. He read the social security manual cover to cover and threw himself into doing a great presentation. That first year there were 500 attendees at the whole conference, and he had 250 of them in his workshop.
Sarenski’s workshops have been increasingly popular, with a recent conference seeing over 1,100 attendees. Speaking about social security has become one of Sarenski’s fortes, resulting in more media attention and invitations to speak.
4. Sarah Susanka
Sarah Susanka is a respected architect who built her career by focusing on the residential market. “I was surprised that there weren’t more successful architecture firms specializing in single-family homes,” she says. “I knew that many people are interested in house design, so I wanted to find a way to make my services more accessible and affordable.”
Sarah realized that there was a market for smaller houses and decided to write a book about it which launched her career as an author, speaker, and Visible Expert. The book, The Not So Big House, was a success and got her interviews with Oprah, Diane Rehm, and Charlie Rose.
She explains that the book had a massive impact on her life, causing her to gain notoriety both in her home state and around the world.
5. Aaron Ward
Aaron Ward is an entrepreneur who helps creators create and sell digital products online.
At the core of his personal brand is a beautiful portfolio website made with Webflow. The site includes a few companies he’s worked with, like Medium, Red Bull, and Spotify.
Aaron’s blog and YouTube channel focus on teaching others how to grow their personal brands on social media. His combination of personality and content creation sets him apart from other personal brands, giving him the opportunity to become a thought leader in the social media space.
6. Charli Marie
Charli Marie was studying design when she started a Tumblr fan page dedicated to the pop punk band Fall Out Boy. She created the page because she loved the band and wanted to connect with other fans. Her popularity on Tumblr led to her having her own t-shirt brand.
In her article, Charli discusses the ups and downs of her t-shirt business. She doesn’t spend too much time focusing on the negative aspects of her company’s decline but instead views it as an important learning experience in her journey as a designer.
7. Mark Manson
Mark Manson is an internet entrepreneur and best-selling author who has built an impressive personal brand, reaching over one million people per month through his website and blog.
Mark is a successful personal brand because he first grew an audience on his blog. He then wrote best-selling books about topics his blogging audience loved.
Mark’s books were successful, so he started a subscription service on his website. He also started making videos about topics he has written about on other social media platforms, like YouTube.
8. Alice Thorpe
Alice Thorpe, a freelance graphic designer, has a YouTube channel where she refers to herself as someone “stumbling through life one pixel at a time.” Alice is self-deprecating, and her tagline is reflective of that.
Alice is an expert in design and creates a lot of content on YouTube and her website. She is able to connect with her audience by having a funny and casual style. Her content is both entertaining and informative.
9. Nesha Woolery
Nesha Woolery has a website that is specifically designed to target women designers. The site is light and breezy, with a focus on online courses, videos, and articles. Nesha herself is a project manager and designer, and her own personal brand aesthetic is reflected in the site’s design.
10. Gary Vaynerchuk
Gary’s story began with hard work and dedication, which led to his success. He is an authentic and self-determined person. When he creates content on platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and LinkedIn, he portrays himself as someone who is down-to-earth and wants others to achieve success on their own terms. He is also the co-founder of VaynerMedia.
A strong identity is important because it makes people confident in what you’re doing. People are more likely to buy brand-name products because they know what they’re getting and there are no surprises. Your personal brand should be just as recognizable, so people know what to expect from you.
11. Bill Nye
Even though Bill Nye is known for his bowties and dad jokes, he is really a man who wants people to become more aware of science. He believes in using reasoning and thinking objectively, which are just as important to him as his ability to entertain.
He comes across as an affable, goofy nerd on stage, but his background as a mechanical engineer means he’s a trusted expert.
12. Brian Dean
SEO “experts” often claim they can increase web traffic by 100% in a short amount of time, making it hard to know who to trust.
When it comes to Google SEO, Brian Dean is the real deal. His website is full of thorough content and testimonials from real people, which makes him appear to be a credible expert. His personal brand is all about trust.
13. Tony Robbins
If you have not been keeping up with Tony, you may still think of him as he was in the 1990s when he was very loud and energetic and had many fans. However, he has changed and is now more sophisticated and subdued. His current website does not show him as he was in the past, but as a financial teacher for the present time.
Tony mirrors the site’s dark color palette by wearing professional attire, making him look more like someone in tech than a self-empowerment prophet. His site showcases a personal brand that is contemporary and relevant, without the flash and pizzazz of the past.
14. Melyssa Griffin
Melyssa Griffin’s mission is to help “heart-centered high achievers grow their income and impact online.” This communicates who she is, what she does, and why it matters, appealing to entrepreneurs’ aspirations and connecting with them on an emotional level.
In her About page, she says she believes everyone deserves happiness, respect and love. And she is determined to give people the tools to create those feelings in every part of their life. This is what she delivers with her quality content which is full of expertise and good vibes. She is also a great example of how a personal brand can be grown through a blog.
15. Shaun White
Even at 7 years old, Shaun White was sponsored by Burton Snowboards. He has continued to be at the forefront of innovation throughout his career, performing tricks that no other snowboarders have been able to do.
He wants to be known for more than just his snowboarding. Shaun White’s brand is all about being the best at what he does, whether that is snowboarding or anything else. He has built his brand around his reputation as an Olympic athlete and uses that to sell his line of snowboards.
16. Tim Ferriss
In his book The 4-Hour Work Week, Tim Ferriss advocates for a different approach to work, one that allows people more freedom and flexibility. His message has resonated with many people who feel chained to their jobs and are looking for a way to break free. Ferriss’s brand is all about empowering people to go against the grain and create their own paths to success.
Even though some people might not believe in the idea of a four-hour work week, there is still a lot of good advice in the things that he says. He comes across as someone who is very knowledgeable about what he is talking about, and he is someone who is willing to help others learn. He also has a podcast called “The Tim Ferriss Show” which is all about helping people improve their lives and grow their businesses.
These personal branding examples demonstrate how rising experts can establish themselves in a particular area by sharing their knowledge through various channels, such as books, speeches, and other educational content. This provides them with a strong foundation on which to base their personal brand.
Don’t underestimate the importance of personal branding! Whether it’s a portfolio, blog, or dating profile, it’s an opportunity to show others what you’re all about. Highlight your strengths, be authentic, and show everyone what an amazing person you are!