Building Personal Branding: Expectation vs Reality

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Social Media on Personal Branding



What comes to your mind when you hear the name J.K. Rowling? It must be ‘author’ or ‘Harry Potter’. What about Steve Jobs? ‘Apple’. Elon Musk? ‘Tesla’. These words that come to your mind when a name is mentioned is called personal branding.

The term branding is usually attached to products and companies. However, few people know the term personal branding. Even fewer know that personal branding can be built.

Personal Branding: Expectation vs Reality


Building a personal branding is not an easy task. Branding is not equal to logo. Putting a logo on your product is not necessarily considered as building a brand to your product. Apple is not popular because the logo is a bitten apple. Rather than because of the quality of the products. In the same way, creating a business card is not necessarily considered as giving a personal branding. Or changing a blog appearance. Branding is about values. The promised values.

Someone I can't remember the name once said, brand is not what values we put on the product, but what people will remember about the product. And I think that is true.

It doesn’t mean that we cannot make people think about the product as we wanted, but in making a brand, we need to build it. There should be a tremendous effort required to make people think of a value we want to put on the product.

nmwardani business card
My business card


When I am talking about the product here, I am talking about me and my blog.

For this reason, I conducted a little research. I asked people in my contacts via Whatsapp Status about what they think about me. This became a starting point of me building my personal brand. I should know how close and how far are my intended brand values to the values that people see from me and my blog.

Here are several answers people gave me:
  • First time we met, I thought you were quiet and stiff. But later, in fact you are humorous. Moody in terms of job, sometimes becomes the first, sometimes keeps the work for later. The most important thing is as a responsible person. If we face any problem, you always communicate and find solutions together. (roughly like that, it is hard to translate them)
  • Is fragile in the beginning, but when the rule is found, she can create something amazing unexpectedly.
  • Pretty smart woman that her jokes still make me think so hard
  • Books (probably because my book package is always getting delivered to my neighbor’s shoe shelf.)
  • Excellent (well, now I know this type of comment is not very much helpful).
what people think about me
What people think about me


From those feedback, I summarize them in several words: Smart. Quiet. Humorous. Moody. Books. Which I think is probably true, but I can obviously see there are negative parts that I need to work on (moody parts).

Obviously none of those feedback is mentioning about being a blogger, because I have just started taking blogging seriously. You can see in the sitemap, I don’t have many posts yet. Also I haven’t shared the posts much to the people I know in real life.

After getting the feedback, then I need to work on what type of personal branding I want to build.

What Brand Values I Want to Build


When I was learning about personal branding for bloggers from my blogging coach, Mbak Marita, I realized I was put in an intersection of roads. Should I introduce myself as a blogger or teacher? Then I decided to choose as a teacher. Yes, I would choose being a teacher who blog, than being a blogger who teaches (Do you know what I mean?). I hope my blog became a media for me to show my experience as a teacher. The topics will be mostly about teaching. So my first keyword for personal brand is TEACHER. Then I put the title ‘Teacher’ in my social media profiles.

But I need to go more specific, so I asked the next question to myself: what kind of teacher do I want people to know me? Responsible. Resourceful. Well, I can add ‘humorous’ there.

Then I compare between the two sets of values. You see, there is a long way to go from one set to the other. But it is okay. People can grow. My blog as well should reflect my growth.

To reach this purpose, there are several steps that I start to implement:
  1. Improve my time management so that I can be more responsible and punctual in my work.
  2. Share more frequently of what I know in my blog and social media.
About humorous, I don’t think I need to improve my jokes. Let it be natural.

Then again time after time I need to get feedback from the people around me. The more data I can take, the better. If there is a discrepancy between the values that people see about me and the values I choose as my branding, I need to find strategies to lead people to the brand values I wanted.

Do I need to care about the number of people who follow me on blog and social media? Well, before that time comes, I need to firstly care about what people see in my blog and social media when they follow me.

Getting feedback and making sure that we are on the right track is only a small part of building a personal branding. My destination is still very far away. I would really appreciate it if you help me in this process by answering this question ,”What words come to your mind if Nia M Wardani is mentioned?”
Nia M Wardani
Hi! Call me Nia. I am a physics teacher and I love to learn anything in the universe.

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2 comments

  1. Yaampun, mbak Nia, aku kira guru bahasa Inggris, eh salah. Habis jago banget sih bahasa Inggrisnya. Seneng bacanya, jadi serasa ikutan pinter bahasa inggris. Wkwkwk

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  2. Waaah jadi kalau mau belajar fisika ingat mbak Nia ya ..hihi

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