How To Find Your Unique Selling Proposition by Authentic Personal Branding

Hands down, one of the top challenges people face in the Internet world is how to craft and find your Unique Selling Proposition.

Without a unique selling proposition your message gets blended into the rest of the Internet noise, and you end up not being heard or just plainly ignored.

Your Unique Selling Proposition is actually a natural result of developing your personal brand.

It therefore makes sense to focus on building out your unique personal brand.

Whether you know it or not, everyone has a personal brand.  You, me, and the gal next door. It’s just a matter of:

  • extracting those unique qualities from within yourself,
  • define how you’re able to help others and,
  • identify the purpose of your brand.

Do these three things and you’ll be heading down the right path, towards building an authentic, unique personal brand.

Your unique selling proposition will naturally fall in place.

I’m going to focus on what I believe are the most important pieces for defining your unique personal brand. But before I take you down that path, it may be interesting to point out that Personal Branding is not a new concept.

Personal Branding In The Making

The words “Personal Branding”  was coined by Tom Peters in his 1997 “The Brand Called You”. Before Tom Peters, it was Al Ries and Jack Trout who mentioned “You can benefit by using positioning strategy to advance your own career” in their book “Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind” . That is a form of personal branding. I1937 Napolean Hill eluded to Personal Branding in his “Think and Growth Rich” . So Personal Branding, even if used under different labels, is nothing new.

Fast forward…present time…

Just like a brand belongs to a company, a Personal Brand belongs to you.

It’s like your thumbprint – unique to you.  Even Oscar Wild knew this 🙂

Be yourself, everyone else is taken ~ Oscar Wild

Think Steve Jobs and Oprah Winfrey, for example. These two have exceptionally strong personal brands.

Steve Jobs: Was (and still is) known for his “Be Unique. Be Different” personal brand. Everything he created, produced or said resonated uniqueness. He literally lived his brand, and lived it the way he wanted too – not as others wanted it. He was authentic to himself, passionate about everything he did, and he did it with strong conviction.

Oprah Winfrey: She is a rags to riches story, and her personal brand is all about empowering people through her uplifiting advice, stories and lifestyles. Her brand translates into an acceptance of one self; who you are, where you came from, and understanding what you want as your future. She is also the epitome of living her own brand. She relates to her audience through empathy, and is crystal clear about her her purpose.

It’s not that difficult to spot Passion and Purpose as a common thread that runs through these two individuals. Both are extremely passionate about what they believe and do, and they do it with purpose towards an end goal in mind.

When you look at other success stories like, Seth Godin, Guy Kawasaki, Richard Branson, Sara Blakely, and Brit Morin (to name a few), each carry similar traits as Steve Jobs and Oprah Winfrey – Passion and Purpose. 

They know what they LOVE TO DO, have a clear vision of what they WANT TO ACCOMPLISH, and their actions CARRY THEM FORWARD. 

The previous sentence is so important that I feel I should repeat it…

They know what they LOVE TO DO, have a clear vision of what they WANT TO ACCOMPLISH, and their actions CARRY THEM FORWARD.  


The Foundation Step – Your Passion.

It would be safe to say that your passion is one of the major cornerstones that forms your personal, authentic, unique brand. Without passion you would not have a personal brand and definitely not a unique selling proposition.

To start building the first part of your foundation, you need to do a little digging.

Dig down deep to understand:

  • the major pivot points in your life. Everyone has them. You just have to dig far enough. Finding those major pivot points can give you an indication of why you enjoy what you are doing,
  • the activities that you enjoy immensely,
  • the places, people and events that have given you lots of joy,
  • the flip side of joyous – the places, people and events that stir up negative emotions. Passions sometimes grow from negative circumstances.

Finding your passion may seem difficult. It’s challenging, but 100% doable. I use a similar process to coach my clients to identify their passions.

It just requires self reflection and a true assessment of YOUR emotions and life events.

You need to get this step right before you can move onto the next. The next builds on you finding your passions.

Understand your passion, and you’ve built a piece of your foundation towards defining your unique and authentic personal brand.

Passion. Passion. Persistence. Passion.

If you still come up empty handed – no passion – just repeat the above four.

‘Listen’ for clues.

And still, if nothing – repeat again.

  • think about what inspires you,
  • what excites you,
  • what stories you’ve read,
  •  inspiring conversations with friends and family.

You will find your passion. Be patient. Be persistent.

You just need to dig deeper, become more aware, and perhaps experience things a little more.

  • attend events outside your niche,
  • expand your circle of friends,
  • step outside your comfort zone,
  • go traveling,
  • start a hobby,
  • do the hard stuff.
  • experience things that you’ve never experienced before.

The list is endless. Just go and do things. Something will stick. You will find that single passion.

..and once you do, it will form the basis of your unique, authentic personal brand – leading to your Unique Selling Proposition.

A recent video interview with Mark Affleck, CEO of YellowChair Strategy, will give you great insights into the Passion and Purpose equation.

Bottom line – find your passion, what ever it takes. It’s one of your foundation bricks that forms your unique and authentic personal brand – Your Unique Selling Proposition.

The Foundation Step – Your Purpose

Great! You’ve made it this far, and hopefully you’ve found your passion.

Purpose! It is the second part of the equation towards building your authentic, unique personal brand.

Having a purpose gives you and your personal brand:

  • meaning
  • direction

Without meaning and direction you have no destination. Without a destination, you may as well be on any path.

Just imagine for a minute paying a large sum of money to someone, without knowing what you are going to get in return.

How about getting into you car and driving to meet a friend, without knowing an address or location.

Better yet, how about being asked to donate money to a cause, without the cause being explained to you.

You need a destination, so you can at least head in the right direction. Purpose provides that.

Understanding your purpose is like your magnetic beacon. It is your guiding light and gives you the rationale why you do what you do.

If you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there. ~ Lewis Carroll

Simplifying Your Purpose

From a very high level I truly believe that all of us have the same purpose. That purpose being “to help inspire and make everyone and this world a better place.”

Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them. ~Dalai Lama

The purpose of our lives is to be happy. ~Dalai Lama

How we inspire and make everyone and everything better depends on the cards we were dealt, the platform we choose to deliver our message, and the skill sets we have accumulated along the way.

Finding your life’s purpose can be a complicated to uncover, but we can simplify the process.

A great starting point is trying to align your purpose with your passion. Start by trying to understand:

  • your skill sets and,
  • how you can help people or how you can help make this planet a better place.

To illustrate, take me as an example…

Various skill sets extracted from my passions: test new technologies, make video’s, internet research, teach students, run businesses, validate marketing plans

How I help my audience: teaching, coaching, guidance, mentorship, setup technology, launch businesses.

Looking at this from another perspective, extract keywords from your resume by answering the following two questions:

  • what are my primary skill sets?
  • how can i help people with my primary skill sets?

I know this may seem like an overly simplistic method of trying to understand your life’s purpose, but it works as a starting point to lay the foundation.

Remember, we’re are all born and accumulate  ‘gifts’ along they way. It’s the sensible thing to try understand how we can use those ‘gifts’ to help others. Besides, this also gives you a comfortable platform to expand and build your purpose.

As Steve Jobs once said:

You can’t connect the dots looking forward; You can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. … This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

Believe that your skills are there for a reason, and they are there so you can help others.

Finding your purpose will probably be an ongoing effort. You may understand your purpose right away. However, if you are like me, your purpose will be continually evolving.

Just keep asking yourself:

  • what makes me feel alive valued and alive?
  • what am I uniquely good at?
  • am I betraying myself?

These three questions, perhaps, will get you closer to identifying your true purpose, and give you and your personal brand netter meaning.

Your Passion, Purpose, Unique Selling Proposition Take Away

Finding your passion and purpose are the two necessary pieces you need in order to define your authentic, unique personal brand. Once you do this the chances of your Unique Selling Proposition falling into place is fairly high.

Simplify the process by:

  • understanding your passion,
  • taking inventory of your skill sets,
  • understanding how to help your audience.

Personal branding, unique selling proposition, passions and purposes are not static. They continuously evolve.

Benchmark your efforts by:

  • making sure you do what you enjoy doing,
  • become exceptional at what you do,
  • be true to yourself.

Also pay special attention to your intuition. It is a powerful guiding force within you.

What ever you do, give everything, including your work, your best shot. When you have done the best you can, and as much as you can, listen to your intuitive ‘voice’ for guidance.

Listen carefully.

Try not to become overwhelmed during the passion and purpose exercise. You don’t have to do it alone.

Tap into the wisdom of the many spiritual leaders, authors, and coaches that are available. My personal favorites: Dalai Lama,Eckhart Tolle,  Deepak ChopraOprah WinfreyDr Wayne DyerDr. Bruce LiptonT Harv EkerTony Robbins, and Kathy Kirk.

Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself, and know that everything in life has purpose. There are no mistakes, no coincidences, all events are blessings given to us to learn from. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

If you need more help or guidance, please contact us. We’re always happy to help.

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