Professionals who live in smaller towns and are struggling to build their personal brands and increase their visibility within their chosen fields should consider moving to a larger city.
The benefits of living in a larger city, from a personal branding perspective, include:
- Wider variety of industries
- Greater cultural and social diversity
- Broader networking opportunities
Variety of industries
Large metropolitan areas usually have more diversified economies than smaller towns, and that drastically increases opportunities for personal branding growth.
More businesses in different sectors equals greater demand for unique personalities with fresh perspectives and innovative ways of helping employers and customers solve problems and generate growth.
Professionals determined to make their brands stand out will invariably find a niche, or possibly a handful of niches, where their individual style and outlook will be valued. Finding that one niche may be all that is needed to turn a personal brand into a successful career.
Having access to such large markets also allows professionals to experiment with different niches to discover which ones are more receptive to their personal brands. It is always possible to abandon a niche and try another one, or apply a different branding strategy within the same niche.
Larger cities have much greater cultural diversity compared to smaller ones, and this creates a larger potential audience for one's unique personal brand.
Beliefs and opinions that might not be openly accepted in smaller, conservative communities will most likely be welcomed in larger cities where people generally have a more receptive, practical mentality.
Professionals living in large multicultural communities have more opportunities to interact with people of different backgrounds, with vastly different outlooks on business and life. Some of these contacts eventually become mentors, investors, and supporters who appreciate the unique traits that make up a person's brand.
Creating such a network of supporters adds credibility to one's brand, creating more business opportunities, and attracting even more followers to help build up the prestige of a personal brand.
Large cities with dynamic, diversified industries have a need for associations that promote their interests, and these associations are a great platform for networking and exposing one's personal brand to influential employers, investors, and consultants. This can rapidly expand the prestige and trust in a professional's brand.
Industry events such as trade shows, conventions, and seminars offer great opportunities for ambitious employees and entrepreneurs to give their personal brands a boost.
There are many ways to stand out during such events, such as:
- Volunteering for committees
- Making speeches
- Interacting with influential industry leaders
- Meeting media professionals who cover the industry
- Developing new industry contacts
Cultivating one's personal brand takes time and effort, and even the most talented and qualified professionals encounter difficulties when trying to find an audience that values their unique traits or outlook, especially if they work in a highly specialized niche.
Relocating to a large multicultural city, with a growing, dynamic economy, will have an immediate impact on one's personal branding efforts, especially for those in the initial stages of their business careers.