In today’s world you can easily create your own personal (or business) brand with the help of Social Media. Your persona, if you will. This does not refer to a flashy icon; rather it’s how you are known to your contacts, your followers, your audience. Your online brand is built on who you are, and what you represent.

5 simple steps to get you started.

1. Make your Personal Strategy
2. Build Your Network
3. Become Visible
4. Google Yourself
5. Start Listening

Make your personal strategy
You want to create your own personal brand statement. Write a short and crispy elevator pitch and describe how you want to be known. What are your strengths? What is your goal? Define your target market and know its needs!

Build Your Network
Use social media tools such as Blogging, FaceBook, LinkedIn, Twitter to connect with people. Start building your network. It’s all about building relationships. Use these networking tools to build a loyal group of followers. Again, key here is to make sure you know their needs!

Become Visible
There are lots of ways to make yourself visible. I will highlight one possibility in this blog. The ideal way to start your online personal brand is to start your own website and registering your own domain name. If you feel this is one step too far, you can easily set up a free page by using WordPress or Blogger. Make sure you add a side bar, where people can subscribe to your blog, connect with you on LinkedIn, follow you on Twitter, or any other Social Media accounts that you may have. Once finished, promote your page as much as you can. For instance put it in your email signature and add it to your Twitter and LinkedIn account etc..

Google Yourself
Before you get started, have you already tried to Google yourself? You are probably already known on the Internet, without even knowing it! If possible, remove or alter any information that you think is inappropriate.

Start Listening
Don’t start any social accounts until you’ve started listening. Once you’ve defined your personal strategy, start listening. Google Alerts is a great place to start. Start receiving updates on the topic you want to build a profile around and see what other people are talking about and try to differentiate yourself from them.