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On this page: Building your personal brand is critical to a successful job search, and Meg Guiseppi will help you understand how it works.

Guide to Understanding and Building Your Personal Brand

The term "personal branding" may be new to many, but the reality of personal branding is not new. It's always been with us. Before there was a name for it, people were assessing other people's reputation and promise of value before deciding whether to partner, hire, or do business with them.

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You've probably heard the term "personal branding" quite a lot. But with all the buzz about branding surrounding us, much of it incorrect or, at best merely snippets of the whole concept, you may be wondering what all the fuss is about and why you should care.

Tom Peters, who coined the phrase in 1997 in his Fast Company article "The Brand Called You," had this to say:

"You're every bit as much a brand as Nike, Coke, Pepsi, or the Body Shop. To start thinking like your own favorite brand manager, ask yourself the same question the brand managers at Nike, Coke, Pepsi, or the Body Shop ask themselves: What is it that my product or service does that makes it different?

We are CEOs of our own companies: Me Inc. Create a message and a strategy to promote the brand called You."

Another personal branding pioneer William Arruda, founder of Reach Personal Branding, says "Your brand resides in the hearts and minds of those around you."

So, you already have a brand. Your brand is your personal DNA -- the combination of personal attributes, values, strengths, and passions that people know you for and that represent the value you offer.

It's up to you to identify those qualities and characteristics within you, bring all the pieces together, and communicate a crystal clear, consistent message across multiple channels – online and offline – that differentiates your unique promise of value and resonates with your target audience.

Job-Hunt's Personal Branding Expert

Meg Guiseppi, our Personal Branding Expert, communicates her brand through her writing here on Job-Hunt, her Executive Career Brand blog, Twitter, and across multiple blogs and executive job search/networking websites.

Meg is the author of the ebook, "23 Ways You Sabotage Your Executive Job Search and How Your Brand Will Help You Land."

Meg is one of only a handful of career professionals worldwide to hold both the Reach Certified Personal Branding Strategist and Master Resume Writer credentials, both recognized gold standards.

For over 20 years in her practice, she's been helping c-level and senior executives differentiate their unique promise of value and position themselves to work their career passion.

More about Meg on Meg Guiseppi, Personal Branding Expert.