Monthly Archives: January 2015

3 personal branding tips for your dating profile

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Interestingly, most people around me don’t know that my personal/professional branding career started with writing personal dating profiles about 6 years ago.

This is probably because few of my clients feel comfortable giving public testimonials about such a personal thing and I am also very discreet about my work. People trust me for a reason. But you know what, everybody’s doing it. It’s like I always say, everybody wants to look good and feel good, so if you haven’t seen a branding specialist yet, then this is the time to do yourself that favor.

My pitch has also sharpened over the years, because previous and new clients and their referrals are running down my door. A new year, a fresh start, I need to work on myself and my business and ‘getting myself out there’ will be the first move!

And when I tell people what I do, it doesn’t take long before they bring the professional branding conversation over to a more personal one. “You don’t happen to look at more personal profiles, like dating profiles and stuff, do you? I have a friend…”

So if you have ‘a friend’ who want’s to go on some great dates this year, tell them to call me.

I spend a lot of time with my clients and the value they get from a sharp profile is priceless.

 

 

I won’t include everything here, so to start with here are the first 3 tips for your dating profile:

(Then you, or your ‘friend’, can get in touch later if you really want to make an irresistible profile that gets you what you want.)

 

1. Be clear about your desired outcome

  • How do you know how to get there if you don’t know where you are going?
  • How can you expect others to give you what you want if you yourself don’t know what that is?

– Don’t dwell on it, just write down the first thing you think about when you ask yourself the question; what do I actually want?

  • A girlfriend/boyfriend? a hookup? to get married? to have children? a friend?
  • Talk it over with a few friends and write it down. Must write it down. Write. It. Down.

NOTE: Don’t place onto one person the burden of being everything you want in your life, that is not a managed expectation…!

 

2. Let your pictures say the right 1000 words

  • Do you actually know how exactly you (or anyone) size up a potential match based on their looks? (whether it’s in person or in a picture)
  • Do you know that, what you write in your profile (with the exception of the first 50 words) says less about you than both the decision about what pictures to include in the profile, and the pictures themselves?
  • Do you know that you can determine someones personality based on how they look better than a set of pre determined questions?

– Unconsciously, our brains and bodies can ‘see’ the specific characteristics we look for in a potential mate within 7 seconds of meeting that person (or seeing their picture).

– Your body language says more about you than what you think. Think about you are trying to say, Which characteristics you have and wan to display. Are you neat and tidy? Are you vain? Are you free spirited?

NOTE: Your photos may actually be even more accurate in determining some specific social characteristics than in-person interactions – from your facial expression to your clothing style — before factoring in what you say or how you act.

Some brief clues:

  • how you stand, hold your arms, or how you face camera can show confidence levels and extroversion/introversion
  • facial features can show whether you are after long or short term relationships and effect what types of people get in touch with you; men look for femininity whilst women look for chiseled (short term) vs softer features (long term)
  • if you are smiling, or whether you’re alone or in a group can show social preferences

Note: I tend to disagree a little regarding the social pictures on dating profiles because you may want to consider your friends privacy. If you decide to include social pictures ask your friends or blur their faces in a non creepy way.

 

3. Your profile picture is their way to your heart (and soul)! 

  • Yeah, it’s not food.
  • And it’s not sex.
  • It’s not even all that laughter you bring into their life.

– It’s that look. It’s that look you give each other when the freckles in your eyes are perfectly aligned and what you see is a mirror image of more than what you are even thinking. It’s called understanding. Meaning and understanding. And that’s what all humans want and need the most out of life, yet give each other the least. Words alone can not describe meaning and understanding. What we think and what we say are not the same. Have you ever had a conversation with someone and felt like they ‘got you’ without you getting into details? And have you ever had a conversation with someone who didn’t understand you, even after explaining every little detail…?

 

Why don’t we give each other understanding you ask?

Because it’s challenging. It’s not easy. Most people just want life to be easier and they’re not actually willing or able to give understanding to others.

Bare with me, I’m going somewhere with this.

I’m not saying that you should spend a lifetime analyzing and creating your profile picture. What I’m saying is that your profile picture is the beginning of getting to your desired outcome (point 1 remember). So let that picture show who you are. Let people see that you understand who you are. And whether it’s a quick hook-up or a long term relationship you are after, save yourself and others the time of being honest. Theres plenty of people who want the same as you, so talk to that audience instead of deceiving both them and yourself.

NOTE: Don’t wear sun glasses, don’t be shirtless, don’t have your friends in the picture so people can’t determine who’s you.

  • Just face camera straight on, relax, and smile.

This is where my friends say I need to include an analysis of my own personal profile picture, and perhaps I will write another post later on. Although I think it’s pretty clear to people with their head screwed on and feedback from my 360 (which included that picture) states that it says I am: determined, vulnerable, cheeky. I’m happy with that.

Good luck writing your dating profile, I hope you get what you are after, and call me if you get stuck.

Sophia

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5 questions to help you launch, refocus or refine your personal brand

Personal Branding

Everyone wants to look good, feel good, have more, know more, be better. It’s human. It’s biology. It’s your right.

Most people however, don’t know how to achieve this. They think they know, but what they really know are all the excuses not to have all of the above.

They have what Covey calls excusitis, and they say things like this to avoid facing their fear of success: ‘I’m too old/young/tall/short’, ‘This is just who I am and I can’t change my personality’, ‘I’ve tried and it doesn’t work’, ‘It’s not for people like me’ etc.

And because I discovered this, and learnt how to overcome it, I myself was able to find my niche, my way, my strengths, and my passion.

With the gift of encouragement and ability to see the best in people (which has at times also worked against me), I help people look good, feel good, and be great. I do this through helping them discover who they are, their strengths and how to leverage them, for then to implement strategies to achieve set goals. This results in my clients finding more and better work or clients; new jobs they love; it increases sales, their confidence, their service offering; and best of all, it helps them self actualise. One of my focus areas is personal branding.

 

The first step of establishing your personal brand is to introduce who you are with you want to be. 

Most people are stuck on the idea that they can’t or won’t change, but whether you think it or not, most people do change quite a lot over the span of their life time. We change taste in music, hobbies, people, foods, and fashion. We change how we dress, where we work, and who we spend time with. Therefore, when you are establishing your personal brand, you are in a way creating your future self and that’s the persona you need to plan towards (not your past self!).

 

Once you have established your ideal future self, you need to prepare for that role. What you wear, how you think, who you hang out with and so on. 

As people need feedback and constant communication with others to find clarity, I recommend working with a branding specialist to get the most out of your personal brand. It is also important to avoid coming off as flip, arrogant, or unprofessional – which too many people do.

Meanwhile, I have prepared 5 questions to help you launch, refocus or refine your personal brand:

 

1. What are your goals?

– Getting published?
– Landing a new job
– Getting invited to present at conferences?

  • Your goals should drive the major aspects of your personal branding campaign, from what you say, to how and where you say it, and to the audiences you target.
  • The more specific your goals, the better you can tailor your personal branding strategy and evaluate its effectiveness.

 

2. What do you have to say?

– What do you know and want to be known for?
– Do you have a clear and original perspective on your specialty field?

  • A popular or different point of view attract people’s attention and inspire them to share your message, which builds brand awareness and helps to create a following.

 

3. What’s your voice?

– Whats your impression on others? (authoritative, academic, conversational, corny, or quirky)

  • Choose a voice that’s true to your character and aligns with your goals to help you connect with others while differentiating yourself.
  • Avoid being sarcastic and negative – it does not play out well on social media.

 

4. Who’s your audience?

– Who do you want exposure to? (media, executives, students, partners, the health conscious)?

  • Thinking about the stakeholders who can help you achieve your goals, and then establish a strategy for reaching them wherever they cluster.

 

5. How should you engage?

– Which channels should you use? (Your audience will determine this)

  • Consider the types of content and media your audiences will be receptive to, and prioritize quality over quantity.
  • Hire people to help you write, connect, set up social media (or don’t use social media).
  • Be active, versatile, professional.

 

So, why is it important to develop and communicate a consistent message that expresses your professional worth and values?

  1. It is an effective way for passive and active job seekers to distinguish themselves from competitors and gain visibility in a crowded employment market.
  2. For executives, it can help attract talent to their organizations, build goodwill with customers and business partners, and create positive buzz for their organisation.
  3. Building a brand and a following on social media demonstrates strong communication skills, the capacity to influence others, and leadership. All attractive traits.

If you would like to discuss your personal (and professional) brand further, please get in touch. I would love to get to know you and help you and others see how great you are.

Sophia

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