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Branding has gotten personal.

An increasingly competitive job market in recent years has led to the birth of the idea of "personal branding," as jobseekers look for ways to stand out to potential employers.

One of the leaders of this burgeoning space is William Arruda, coauthor of the bestseller Career Distinction.

Arruda's philosophy centers on identifying and communicating the unique value you can bring to an employer. If done correctly, your reputation and credibility will help you stand out from the crowd, and create an environment in which job opportunities come to you.

Sounds like the position we'd all like to be in. Here, Arruda guides us through the often confusing employment maze.

Q: You're known as a personal branding expert, but what IS a personal brand, and why is it so important to create a distinctive one?

A: Personal branding is nothing more than understanding what makes you interesting, compelling and differentiated and using that to stand out from your peers. It's about building a solid professional reputation around your unique promise of value.

It's important because there are numerous others with your job title, many people who share your goals. The only way to succeed is to stand out from them and create demand for your services. Otherwise, you are a commodity—and as a marketer, you know that commodities compete on price. If you want to get the compensation you deserve, you need to offer something that is only available from you!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
image of Mack Collier

Mack Collier is a social-media strategist based in Alabama. He helps companies build programs and initiatives that let them better connect with their customers and advocates. His podcast, The Fan-Damn-Tastic Marketing Show, discusses ways that brands can turn customers into fans. His first book, Think Like a Rock Star: How to Create Social Media and Marketing Strategies That Turn Customers Into Fans, was published in April 2013 by McGraw-Hill.

Twitter: @MackCollier

LinkedIn: Mack Collier