Our personal branding guide and blog posts explain how you can develop your own personal brand, and outline the essential marketing channels and brand elements you’ll need to do it.
To make this advice tangible, we’ve done a case study on entrepreneur and marketing guru Gary Vaynerchuk, a prime example of someone who has built a strong personal brand and leveraged it to support their professional goals. Below we break down the key components of his brand, analyzing strategies you can apply in your own personal branding efforts.
No matter what channel of Vaynerchuk’s you tune into, his narrative is always the same, and aligned to his niche target audience. As we outlined in our blog post on steps for defining your personal brand, your personal brand message should hit a sweet spot of focusing on things you are passionate about, and align to topics that will resonate with your target audience.
For Vaynerchuk, his passion for inspiring people to find career success and his interest and knowledge in business and marketing shine through in the content he shares on his personal brand channels. This narrative also strategically aligns with his networking efforts and customer acquisition strategy for his marketing strategy books and marketing agency VaynerMedia. Positioning himself as a thought leader on business and marketing supports his credibility as the leader behind these lines of business, leading to more customers and fans.
Key Personal Branding Lesson from Vaynerchuk: Keep your personal brand narrative consistent, and ensure it matches your own passions and the passions of those you wish to engage with.
One of Vaynerchuk’s claims to fame is the early value he saw in social media as a marketing platform, and his willingness to experiment and add new channels to his marketing mix. It’s no surprise his channels are prime examples of the way someone can leverage social media for personal brand development.
Social Media Profiles
Every one of Vaynerchuk’s social media profiles has consistent branding, and takes advantage of each platform’s unique opportunities to establish a look and feel that is his own. For example, his social profiles like LinkedIn, TikTok and Twitter have custom cover images, and complete each section the platforms offer to upload an image or add descriptive text.
Vaynerchuk’s content strategy is also consistent to his brand message, and is formatted in a way that is native to each specific platform. Vaynerchuk is an expert when it comes to cross promoting content, as when he publishes a new video or image post, he find a way to promote it across his channels. For example, a LinkedIn post and an Instagram story from Vaynerchuk promoting the same content might look a bit different on each respective platform, but they carry the same message and reflect his visual brand style.
Examples of this include the DAILYVEE content series where Vaynerchuk creates vlogs to document a behind the scenes look at how he runs his businesses, his blog posts that he writes on marketing and business topics and his branded social graphics.
Key Personal Branding Lesson from Vaynerchuk: Ensure your social media profiles and the content you share on them has consistent messaging and branding.
The consistent look that Vaynerchuk’s visual brand content has is the result of him establishing a core set of brand elements for himself. For instance, Vaynechuk created a logo for his personal brand consisting of his signature, he established black, white and green as his personal brand colors (likely not a coincidence that these are his favorite football team’s colors, the NY Jets), he uses the same font, and he shares photography of himself and his day-to-day life in a consistent style, often featuring his logo as a watermark.
Vaynerchuk uses this set of personal brand assets across all of his content and marketing channels. For example, the header image on his personal website features his logo and uses the same color palette and font (see below in personal website section), his social media graphics use these colors and fonts, and his video content uses these assets for transitions and on screen text.
Key Personal Branding Lesson from Vaynerchuk: Establish a consistent set of visual assets to use in your content marketing and marketing channel branding.
Learn more about creating a visual identity for your brand in this blog post, “7 Personal Branding Tips to Help Grow Your Audience and Influence.”
Vaynerchuk uses his personal website garyvaynerchuk.com as a hub for his personal brand. His website hosts blog posts and videos where he tells his story and speaks to his audience in the first person, links to his social channels, and features other personal branding essentials like his bio and career accomplishments to position who he is and what he is all about.
Key elements of Vaynerchuk’s website to mirror on your own personal brand website:
Headshot and “a Day in the Life” Photography
We identified a professional headshot and photography that shows you in your element as important personal brand assets in the essentials blog linked above. Vaynerchuk leverages these assets to 1. Show who he is and allow people to put a face to the name brand, and 2. To show him in the act of supporting his personal brand message.
The photography Vaynerchuk shares on his website and social channels showcases him out in the community helping people learn more about business and marketing (his personal brand narrative and goals), and positions him as a thought leader in his industry.
The “My Story” section on Vaynerchuk’s website is the equivalent of the “About” section company and personal websites typically have. Vaynerchuk’s professional bio checks important boxes, such as discussing his current job roles, past experience, and bits of personal information that convey his values.
Vaynerchuk also has a strong short version of his professional bio that sits in the header of this page, immediately establishing who he is for site visitors. This is another important asset for quickly communicating what you and your brand are about that we outlined in our personal branding essentials blog (often comes in the form of a "one liner,' or single sentence description, but we will forgive Vaynerchuk on this one).
Visual Personal Branding
Vaynerchuk’s website is in line with the visual branding he uses on his other marketing channels. This includes color and font usage, photography style, and the inclusion of his personal brand logo.
[Image of visual personal branding on his website]
A Point of Sale for His Products
Personal brand channels can be leveraged to support your business and side hustles (read more on this below), and personal websites make for a great place to do this in a tangible way by turning them into a point of sale for purchasing your products and services.
Vaynerchuk expertly does this on his website, with dedicated pages where people can learn more about how they can book him for speaking opportunities, and buy his marketing and business strategy books.
Key Personal Branding Lesson from Vaynerchuk: Create a personal website to serve as a hub for your brand, and fill it with content that shares your story.
Check out this blog post for more tips on what to include on a personal website: “Personal Branding Tips: Most Important Things to Include on Your Portfolio Website,” and our personal branding toolkit for more information on website platforms you can use to build and host your own site.
Vaynerchuk leverages his channels to deliver many of the key benefits of personal brand development, with one of the main examples being the way he uses them to support his businesses and side hustles. Monetization is a common personal branding goal, and Vaynerchuk does just that with his as he capitalizes on his personal brand’s audience to promote his agency Vaynermedia, as well as promoting his side hustles like his writing career and his inspirational speaker gigs.
An example of this includes his personal branding and entrepreneur advice book “Crushing It!: How Great Entrepreneurs Build Their Business and Influence-and How You Can, Too,” which he markets across his channels, including his website, as mentioned above.0
While Vaynerchuk capitalizes on the strong community he’s built around his personal brand, he doesn’t do so in a way that comes across as too salesy. This is because 1. He creates products that are designed to provide his target audience real value (ex. In-depth marketing strategy books written for marketers), and 2. He follows his own rule that states the majority of the content you share on your marketing channels should offer free value to your audience, and only a small portion of content should be ads and promotional content.
Follow these tips for monetizing your personal brand.
Gary Vaynerchuk serves as an example of the way people can establish strong personal brands that deliver an engaged network, and support for their professional goals. Follow the examples from Vaynerchuk in this blog post to create the key elements and strategies you’ll need to develop your own personal brand.
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