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Personal Branding Trends for 2014 (Part 1)

by William Arruda  |  
January 13, 2014
  |  12,681 views

Throughout the year, I monitor what's happening in the world of personal branding. At year's end, I analyze the data to predict future trends. My take on 2014? It will be a year of personal branding evolution—not revolution.

Of course, evolution is the key to survival, especially in our competitive international marketplace. Here's the first installment of an article on trends that will have the most impact on the brand that's you.

1. Social Access at Work—From Restricted to Required

Many companies have been reluctant to allow employees access to social media while at the office. In fact, according to a study by Statista released in September 2013, one in five US employees are not allowed access to Facebook, one in six aren't allowed access to Twitter, and one in ten aren't even allowed access to LinkedIn. YouTube and other sites are also restricted at many companies. It would be almost impossible for you to do your job as a marketer at such a company.

Over the past year, however, I have seen numerous companies loosen their restrictions or eliminate them entirely, and that trend will accelerate in 2014—for two reasons:

  • First, companies realize they are losing the war. They can block social media sites from corporate infrastructure, but they can't prevent employees from using their mobile devices to tweet, check in on Facebook, and update their LinkedIn status.
  • Second, they understand that employees need social media to do their job—because every employee is a brand ambassador.

2. Social Savvy—From Optional to Essential

If you don't have social media skills, your personal brand will wither up. Period. Social media is no longer simply a lighthearted, youth-oriented way to differentiate yourself. Adopted by virtually every demographic segment, social media is now perhaps the most powerful tool in your competitors' suite of marketing tactics.

Most employees, regardless of their role or generation, will be expected to participate in their organization's social branding efforts. As a marketer, social media savvy is even more important for you.


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William Arruda is a personal branding pioneer, the founder and CEO of Reach Personal Branding, and the author of Ditch. Dare. Do! 3D Personal Branding for Executives.

Twitter: @williamarruda

LinkedIn: William Arruda

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  • by WannaGoYo, Inc. Mon Jan 13, 2014 via web

    William, the insights with regards to social media evolving in the workplace were really interesting. Do you believe that new structures will be created to incentivize employees for being brand ambassadors? If so, what do you feel would be the most beneficial ways to structure a system such as this?

  • by Robert M. Donnelly Tue Jan 14, 2014 via web

    I have developed one of the first MBA courses in the nation on personal branding and I use my book: Personal Brand Planning for life, available on Amazon as the text. Surveys of MBA students and MBA alums revealed that the majority of those who responded needed and wanted help with personal branding, but their college or university did not offer any courses or training to help MBA's market themselves more effectively in the new world of work.

  • by Heather Poduska Tue Jan 14, 2014 via web

    Great article William, thank you! I love what you said about video. I agree completely that casual does not mean sloppy. You are still trying to convey value, confidence and professionalism. As the say goes, how you do anything is how you do everything, so be careful how you represent yourself and your business in your videos.

  • by Kimmy Burgess Wed Feb 12, 2014 via web

    William i agree to your above saying that evolution is the key to survival, that is why branding shouldn't be limited to age old practices, rather casualness with professional outlook can be the talk of the town if implemented properly. Due to which i believe baseless restriction needs to be do way with, where new ideas & passion should be given every chance to grow.

  • by Robert m. Donnelly Thu Feb 13, 2014 via web

    Anyone interested in personal branding should get: Personal Brand Planning for life, available on Amazon to determine their unique skill set and persona so thar they can market themselves more effectively.

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