Why I Don’t Have A Personal Brand, And That’s Okay (I Think)

Ah, the personal brand. It seems like there is an ever-increasing emphasis lately on the importance of establishing your personal brand. And, I mean, I guess I get it. Having a strong personal brand helps you present yourself to the world as a concise, easy to consume package. People can scroll through your social media accounts and quickly “get” your whole vibe or deal.

Every article that I’ve read about starting a blog (in anticipation of, well, starting this blog) has mentioned the need to brand yourself–as an audience-building tactic–so that you can develop a niche following of readers who always know what to expect from you. This idea is incredibly daunting to me, and has actually kept me from starting this blog for quite some time. So many questions. What in the world is my personal brand? Once I decide, am I confined to only write about topics that are “on-brand” for me? Am I only able to post images that fit a very unique and specific aesthetic that I’ve decided on at one static moment in my life?

whoami

Call me old-fashioned or out-of-touch, but I reject the idea of a personal brand. Human beings are complicated, man! We’re multifaceted and deep, and as we grow, our likes and dislikes, opinions and ideas are constantly evolving. I don’t think we’re meant to distill ourselves down into these easily digestible little homogeneous tablets.

So why do we feel the need to typecast ourselves this way?  Marketing! A close cousin of the elevator pitch, personal branding is a tool you can use to sell yourself, whether to a potential employer, romantic partner, friend, Instagram follower, [insert person you want to impress or whose respect you want to gain]. But does this really allow us to be our authentic selves? Can having a personal brand start to dictate the things we choose to do, like, and create, at least on some subconscious level, for fear of straying from our brand? At what point does our personal brand start defining us, instead of the other way around?

brand

I don’t really have the answers to these questions. What I do have are a thousand and one different interests and ideas bouncing around my head that can’t be made to fit under the umbrella of one specific brand. Much like Miley Cyrus, I simply can’t be tamed! (Much unlike Miley Cyrus, I am not engaged to a Hemsworth and have not yet hosted SNL. Le sigh.)

So this is the inaugural post. The Girl With No Brand. A new home for the jumble of ever-evolving thoughts, ideas, and whims that filter in and out of my brain. Expect future posts to maybe be similar, or maybe be completely different? The beauty of brandlessness is that I don’t have to decide right now.

Toodles! (I will say, if I did have a brand, this closing would be very on-brand for me.)

Joanna

toodles

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