🎥 Kickstart Your Personal Brand (Christine Gritmon)

Christine Gritmon


This is a summary of Christine Gritmon’s presentation at the #kickstart-dublin event in Dublin, Ireland on April 27, 2022, which can be viewed below


There are—in my experience—three key steps to successful personal branding:

  1. Getting over your blockages;
  2. Defining who you are, what you do, and why people should care;
  3. Rocking it out so the people who need you can find you

This is a short presentation, so I’ll stick to the most important part, the one that needs to come first: getting past those blockages that are keeping you from owning the rock star that you truly are.

In my work helping hundreds of people out their brands forward in bigger, bolder ways online, I’ve found the following three fears to be the most common blockages to personal branding work (you may see yourself in here):

GIF of Christine on a red background peering down her glasses at you

1. Braggadoccio

We worry about looking braggy—because nobody likes a braggart, right?

At Kickstart Dublin, I made everyone look at person next to them and tell them three things:

  • Something they rock at, that people know they rock at, and specifically why they do it so well;
  • Something unrelated to their job that they rock at that other people maybe don’t know about;
  • And just to take the edge off, something they totally suck at.

I then asked them:

  • How do you feel about this person now that they’ve told you they’re amazing at something?
  • When they told you what they were good at, did you smile when you heard it?
  • Did you hear them and immediately hope that they’d fail—or that they’d succeed?

I sincerely hope it felt good to hear them declare what they were good at.

The people who don’t do that for us are not our people.

Our people want us to succeed.

Our people want us to help them to succeed.

Our people do not resent our success.

What we’re worried about, ultimately, is not that people will judge us the way we judge others;
We worry that others will judge us the way we judge ourselves.

We are harsher on ourselves. We root less for our own success than we should. We find all the reasons not to root for ourselves.

As for other people?

People generally want us to succeed. I mean, why wouldn’t they?

You know who doesn’t want you to succeed? You know who hears you “bragging” and immediately puts you on their s*** list?

Losers.

People who aren’t putting their energy towards their own success, or towards building others up—but instead look jealously upon people who have the confidence that they rightfully lack.

You are not here for the losers.

Stop thinking about them.

Think about the people who want to see you WIN.

So, once you get over a fear of bragging about your own legitimate gifts, that opens the door to letting you…

Define:

  • What do you rock at?
  • Who needs to know that?

Rock It Out:

  • Where are those people, so you can get your message in front of them?

2. Selfishness

People worry putting their personal brand out there will make them look selfish—like they’re all about themselves all the time.

But, truly, it is this very concern that is selfish!

Get OUT of your own head and start thinking about somebody else: the people who need you.

Clients need to be able to find you in order for you to help them. And if you’re caught up in your own head and hoarding all your awesome, how does that help them?

It doesn’t.

Furthermore, if you can’t even help yourself to shine, how can you help them with, well, anything?

When you hide, who are you helping?

  • You’re not helping the people who need you, because they can’t find you.
  • You’re not helping yourself.
  • You’re not helping the people who believe in you and your network who wants to help you.

You’re only helping the people who don’t want you to succeed.

And those people are those losers we mentioned before.

Don’t help the losers.

This opens the door to let you…

Define:

  • Who needs your help?

Rock It Out:

  • How are they looking for you?
  • Where are they looking, and what language are they using?

3. Imposter Syndrome

You aren’t putting yourself out there because you fear you’re not actually good enough and will be found out as a fraud.

I have a few personal stories about this.

I used to work in a newsroom. When I started, it was only natural to me that I should beef up my public social media presence so that I’d have my finger on the pulse of what was going on in the communities I covered, and so I was a known entity so that people would know to come to me with their stories.

And yet, when I was asked to help others in the newsroom with this task—was, in fact, promoted to Engagement Editor with this as one of my functions—I thought, “But I don’t know anything about this stuff! I just sort of do it. Who am I to help anyone with this?”

And then I realized:

The fact that something came naturally to me made it seem like it was easy, and thus un-valuable.

We often tend to conflate difficulty with importance, forgetting that proficiency can greatly reduce our own perception of the usual difficulty—and thus importance—of the task.

And, truly, to help someone, you certainly don’t have to know everything—you just have to know more than they know, and then share that with them.

Voila! You’re valuable. And you knew enough to help someone else.

But you know what’s an even BETTER cure for imposter syndrome?

Just Get Better!

Seriously! That’s it!

While I was still in the newsroom, local people, businesses, and groups started asking me to come speak about social media (which later lead to me launching my own social media consulting business in 2016).

“I don’t know anything about social media for business!” I thought at first. “I just…do social media. That doesn’t mean I know how to tell others how to do it!”

But in addition to the first lesson—realizing that I only needed to know more than the people I was helping, which I did—I also realized a very simple solution to feeling like I didn’t know enough was to learn more.

And on the topic of social media in particular, the world happens to be chock full of people, websites, and events that are all about helping you learn more—from conferences like Social Media Marketing World to websites like our very own Social Media Pulse community!

Doing the work also helps you level up. Learning is great; doing is great; both is a surefire recipe for leveling up.

Once you learn more, do more, and get better, you can…

Define:

  • What do you want to become the expert in?

Rock It Out:

  • What are other experts in that arena doing—or not doing?

OK, so we’ve hopefully answered your specific blockage at this point. Here’s a few extra tips to keep in mind as you move into defining and expressing your personal brand:

Execution Tips:

  • Mind your digital footprint
  • Be clear—don’t have too many stories
  • Don’t be afraid to turn the wrong people off
  • Root for yourself!
  • Remember that you are doing good things

Christine Gritmon @christine
I think you’re a rockstar.
Yes, YOU!
Let me know what lights you up—I want to hear YOUR stories (and to have you write for Social Media Pulse!) :heart:


Tell Us Below:

What are your biggest blockages to embracing your own personal brand?

What would you love to be better known for?

How are you most comfortable expressing your personal brand online?

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Great talk/ article Christine! We’re not here for the losers. :star_struck:

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For AGES I refused to believe I had a personal brand. Then someone freaked out on Instagram because I appeared without glasses. And started talking about fancy shirts.

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I still kinda want to scold you when you ditch the pink wall & monstera leaves for too long.

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So good to see this talk in person and now here it is recorded! Safe home Christine!

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Thanks so much @louise @amanda1 @hello8 & @melanie for the opportunity! :heart: #KickstartDublin
Happy to come back to Dublin anytime (tell Sam!)

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Thanks for giving Kickstart a proper good Kickstart. I figure we all have a personal brand, we just need to find out what it is. Your talk definitely helps with that.

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