Personal branding matters to your life and your business more than you think. It is the most effective way to build your trust and credibility, without which nothing could be achieved. A solid personal brand enhances your chance of employment and opens up new career opportunities for a professional. For an owner of a small business or a CEO of a large organization, your personal image affects your bottom line. It is as simple as that.

Before we discuss personal branding, we need to distinguish a brand from branding. According to the American Marketing Association, "A brand is a name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies a seller's good or service as distinct from those of other sellers." In other words, a brand refers to the perception that customers have of a given product or service. On the other hand, branding is all the different ways of creating, selecting, and blending attributes that differentiate a product, service, or business in an attractive, meaningful, and compelling way. It is generally understood that the concept of personal branding was first introduced in 1937 in the book "Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill." Yet the concept of personal branding gained more significant popularity when Tom Peters published his article – The Brand Called You in Fast Company Magazine in 1997. In the report, Tom Peters said: Big companies understand the importance of brands. Today, in the Age of the Individual, you have to be your own brand. Here's what it takes to be the CEO of Me, Inc. Regardless of age, regardless of position, regardless of the business we happen to be in, all of us need to understand the importance of branding. We are CEOs of our own companies: Me Inc. In business today, our most important job is to be head marketer for the brand called You.

Forbes contributor Goldie Chan contends that people buy brands and invest in people rather than simply purchasing products. Eighty-two percent of buyers are more willing to trust a company when the staff and the CEO are actively engaged in social media. Some people say that the future of branding is personal branding, and such a statement may not just be an exaggeration. The distinction between corporate branding and personal branding is blurred, which is true for startups and large organizations. And it is also true with employees and employers. While there can be a long list of benefits of personal branding, we believe the following are the key ones.
1. You build your trust and credibility
Lack of trust or lost trust is very costly indeed. The consequence of losing trust is not only visible and immediate but can also have a long-term impact. A single incident can negatively impact revenue, bring expensive penalties, and cause irreparable brand damage. Employee and customer loyalty are significantly eroded if a company's CEO is found displaying a lack of behavioral and moral integrity. With an uptick in fake news and various scams unfolding on social media, the consumers' default position is now one of mistrust. According to a recent Accenture study, lack of trust costs global brands $2.5 trillion annually, representing $756 billion in lost revenue and a 41 percent loss of their customer base to the competition in the US. Nothing should be more compelling to a person than building an exquisite personal brand that ensures trust and credibility. This personal branding becomes the linchpin to success in today's business world by attracting leads, prospects, and new clients.

2. You lay your foundation for a personal "ecosystem."
Modern society is like an enormous web of connections. Nobody can live or work in silos. You have to be part of a network. Just as businesses operate in their ecosystems, so do individuals. A personal ecosystem comprises multiple networks that include your family members, personal friends, and work colleagues. However, a personal ecosystem is not just about connecting with as many people as possible. Instead, your ecosystem should consist of like-minded people who work together in a mutually interdependent and beneficial manner. Personal branding may be the most effective way of building your ecosystem. These meaningful relationships and partnerships are invaluable assets of your ecosystem.

3. You increase your sales
One myth around personal branding that needs to be demystified is that personal branding is just about personal things. This notion is untrue. Depending on the objective you set for your personal brand, it will end up impacting every part of your life and career. When you work for a company, your image also determines how your customers perceive you and if they like to do business with your company. As an entrepreneur, your image can determine the fate of your business. Maintaining a good personal brand is critically important both as an employee and employer.

4. You create an impact on society
Every one of us is a member of multiple communities. You are a member of your family, a member of your alumni network, a member of an organization, or different associations. Directly or indirectly, we all create value for our communities in the form of physical and digital assets. Our behavior as such can negatively or positively affect our communities and society at large. When each of us behaves with integrity within our digital communities, we help contribute to a safer and healthier society. Identity, visibility, and credibility are the three determining components of your brand. Our technology transforms your brand-building process into a complete digital experience.

Built upon Web3.0, blockchain, and AI, id4Pro helps establish your unique digital identity through content marketing and social media activities. It increases your visibility through all the audience touchpoints, including your website, online search results, social media networks, and review sites. Our solution also facilitates the collection of feedback from your audience and your social engagement to protect and build your credibility through digital means.