I recently attended a personal branding training by Connie Aluoch that was hosted by Hernovation.
What I learned from the training is that personal branding entails different aspects like personal values, strengths, and goals, aspects that are slightly different from every field. Branding for people in Technology, for instance, is different from branding for people in the fashion or entertainment industries.
Personal branding is important as it helps us stand out in crowds, establish ourselves as experts, and gain trust from our potential clients. In personal branding, the first impression is crucial and play a big role in how people perceive each other.
Here are tips on how we should brand ourselves as web developers;
Be you, find your niche
We exist in a world with a lot of competition hence we should strive to add value into what already exists while being personal.
Personal branding is about an individual, about the struggles, solutions and how to overcome them. One should build their brand by talking about their passions and experiences. The web development industry is dynamic and keeps on changing but there is always something that can make you stand out. You are your number one billboard and your brand should be always on.
Sign up for social media accounts
The number one way to put oneself out there is through social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram. The trick is to use one unique username across all the platforms. This is important to avoid confusing your audience and ensuring that there is uniformity. After signing up for the accounts, be active by posting content that is aligned with web development. It is important to drive conversations that are relevant to what one does.
Be cautious about what you post as the internet never forgets.
Participate in online web development and programming platforms
Platforms like stack overflow, Git hub and Quora offer opportunities for developers to post questions and answers to help the community members in their projects. We should constantly strive to contribute in such platforms as they improve our confidence and establish our authority as developers. For instance, in stack overflow, answering questions about web development can help us keep getting better and proving it the world.
GitHub as a code repository and version control tool can be a place for us to share tutorials, source codes, fix bugs, and even collaborate with other developers. Also, as a project management platform, we can display our expertise through our projects or contributions to open source projects.
Create a developer portfolio
A portfolio is a developer’s CV that showcases what one has done and can do. It is an opportunity to highlight our strengths online. It should be on your own URL or a website where it is accessible to everyone. It is important to show a few finished projects that indicate progress and growth.
This portfolio should show your passion, special interests and portray you as a professional in your field.
Have a blog
Having a blog as a developer is one way of branding yourself. Coupled with social media platforms, a blog is a good tool for personal branding for web developers. Among the biggest reasons developers should blog is to express their passion and build their CV. A blog is also a source of online visibility. Blogging enables web developers to express their ideas, and expertise as well as network online. Ensure that you consistently write articles about development and post.
Attend Physical talks and meetups
It is said that your brand is what people say when you are not in the room. Most web development jobs and gigs are gotten through referrals. It is important therefore, to put ourselves out there and meet other people and network.
Physical meetups are a great opportunity to build soft skills through activities like attending forums, volunteering to be a presenter, a mentor or an event organizer. This builds our brand by connecting with people who have the same interests. It is also an opportunity to meet great developers who can mentor you or collaborate with. Although people can network online, face-to-face interactions can yield surprising connections and make stronger impressions.
People in technology are known to dress casually but making an effort and investing in how you present yourself adds a different touch. One’s dressing, body language, grooming and styling should be appealing while reflecting their profession.
You are a developer
Being aspiring does not land you opportunities as people doubt whether you have the expertise required. Every master was once a beginner. Be confident but aware of your abilities and remember that you can learn while doing the job. Stop aspiring, become.
The author, Justina Kageni, is a Web Developer.
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