By S. Renee Smith, Vivian Harte

It doesn’t matter what your ears are tuned to — everyone is talking about self-branding. That’s the buzz, but do you really know what it means? Do you have a brand? If you were to deliberately create one, what could it do for you?

Branding is one of those buzzwords that everyone uses, but few people really understand what it means. Branding is your understanding of your life’s purpose and how you want to show up in the world to live on purpose. By creating your brand, you create buzz about you.

Buzz is created because people can relate to what you say and do and how you do it. Like a great movie that leaves you so spellbound that you can’t wait to tell your friends about it, your brand leaves people feeling a certain way about you. The feeling you give them creates the buzz.

Start a buzz about yourself by taking the following three steps:

  • Get clear on your life’s purpose. Branding isn’t about promoting what you do; it’s about being who you are. In today’s competitive marketplace, there are plenty of people who can do what you do, but not the way you do it. That’s because of who you are.

  • Know the message you want to convey. For years you were taught to mirror people you wanted to impress. That’s called building the “right image.” Branding is being who you are and bringing the value of what you do to the table. You create an image around your brand, not a brand around your image.

  • Understand the value you bring. Everyone has value. It’s not what you do, but the results you create. Once you understand what others specifically value about you, you’ll have a brand that will create a buzz.