In the past couple of years, a considerably greater degree of attention has been paid to the creation, development, and maintenance of a personal brand. In basic terms, personal branding is defined as the ongoing process of creating and maintaining a prescribed image in the minds of others about yourself. You personal brand is intrinsically tied in with your business or anything else with which you associate professionally. Mega-entrepreneur Jeff Bezos says “Your brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room.”
If you are like a good many people, you attend conferences and conventions as part of your professional life. Here are nine ways in which you can market your personal brand at these types of gatherings.
Printed Business Cards
In the digital age in which we live, many people overlook the importance that printed business cards still carry. Printed business cards are a must if you will be attended a conference and convention. You should have them on hand even if you don’t travel to conferences and conventions. Business cards are an important way to convey and market your personal brand at conferences and conventions.
The manner in which you design and create your business cards can be a notable part of marketing your personal brand to those in attendance at these gatherings. They also provide a helpful means of providing a link to these people into the future.
Develop an Elevator Pitch
Coming up with what commonly is referred to as a concise elevator pitch can also be helpful in marketing your personal brand at a conference or convention. In basic terms, when it comes to your personal brand, this type of pitch is a concise, informative, and comprehensive statement about your professional self that can be conveyed to a person in the time it takes to ride on an elevator. An elevator pitch is one that ideally takes about 45 to 60 seconds from start to finish.
Conferences and conventions provide you a unique opportunity to engage in strategic marketing. Part of strategic marketing at a confab is identifying events scheduled during the course of a conference or convention that will best permit you an opportunity to showcase yourself. For example, if there will be some sort of roundtable discussion centering on a topical area in which you are adept, that type of setting can provide an ideal occasion to market your personal brand.
Jump Into Discussions
Even at this juncture in the 21st century, some women are more reticent to dive into discussions at conferences and conventions. They follow social rules of etiquette that delay their entry into a discussion while others banter back and forth and even inappropriately dominate discussions. Men are more likely to interject into these discussions than are women.
In order to promote your personal brand you need to be able to share and voice your thoughts. This can necessitate interjecting commentary into discussions, albeit in a polite and respectful but confident manner.
Listen and Consider
In addition to being able to interject in a manner that includes yourself in a discussion at a conference or convention, you also need to be mindful and truly listen to what other people are saying as they speak. You can build your personal brand by having a better understanding of others by seriously listening to what they have to say.
This include something as simple as listening during introductions. Many people are not focused during introductions and do not actually hear another person’s name when it is presented. You may be such a person and find yourself focusing on what you will say next rather than listening appropriately to the basic information being provided to you, like a name.
Utilize Social Media
Both as a lead up to a conference or convention as well as during such a gathering you need to take advantage of social media. By appropriately taking advantage of social media, you will be able to provide public access to the elements of your professional life that you consider important to your personal brand.
In addition, by using social media during a conference or convention, you are able to present yourself and your associated brand in active professional settings. You also get to showcase yourself with others attending these types of gatherings in a manner that can work to provide boost to your overall personal brand.
Complete Your LinkedIn Profile
If you are like many people, including those who are mindful of the importance of developing a meaningful personal brand, your LinkedIn profile very well may be incomplete. In this day and age, LinkedIn profiles have become the go-to source for information about people in the business or professional world. Thus, when you are heading to a conference or convention, make certain that your LinkedIn profile is complete, up to date, and professional in its presentation.
As you go about meeting people and interacting with them at a conference or convention, you may be asked to provide additional information of some type or another. This provides you another excellent opportunity to develop your personal brand. When you are asked to provide something or another, make certain you do follow up promptly. Indeed, if it is something you can gather and present while the conference or convention is still going on, all the better.
Send Thank You Note
Finally, a solid tactic you can employ to enhance you personal brand via participation in a conference or convention is to maintain a connection with key people you meet at such a gathering into the future. One effective step you can take in the aftermath of a conference or convention to enhance your connection with key people is to send a physical thank you note through the U.S. Mail.
You should be gathering complete contact information with people you want to stay connected with that you meet at conferences and conventions, including street addresses. Because appropriately drafted, real world thank you notes are not widely used in this day and age, taking the step to communicate in this manner will set you apart from the conventioneer pack.
By taking advantages of these nine tips at a conference or convention, you will find that you can make notable progress on advancing and enhancing your personal brand. You will be able to make meaningful and even more lasting impressions on fellow conference or convention goers.
Meet the Author: Jessica Kane
Jessica is a writer for Every USB, where you can create your very own custom usb drive for your brand or company.