How would/should I create a brand for myself?

My wife and I have been working at the American School in Japan for the past 14 years.  We have had a wonderful time here.  Our 2 kids have spent their whole lives here and love it.  We have a very tight knit group of friends.  We feel that we have grown as educators and have a lot to offer.  This fall we halfheartedly starting looking around to see what was available out there.  We did not see much as finding art and entry level admin jobs are not overly common.  However, what really did not help our cause at all as we were not really ready to put ourselves out there to be seen.  We were not ready to market ourselves properly.  Time to fix things and do it right so we are ready for when an opportunity turns up.

I enjoyed reading both Dan Schawbel and and Jeff Utecht’s articles on personal branding.  I compared them to each other to look for similarities and them looked at how they would be able to help my wife and I when we are ready to recruit again.

  1. Discovering my/our brand.  I have some ideas for this this as I do like the name EsArtGuy that I use for my blog and having it linked to my name.  I think I can work on this and develop it into something. However, in the past, my wife and I have always “marketed” ourselves as a team.  As she wants an admin job and I want to continue with art, should we still be a team or brand ourselves separately?
  2. Using a blog.  Currently I have 2 blogs.  The one I use for Coetail and the one for my classroom.  I am wondering if the one I use for Coetail could morph into one that contains my resume, video resume, cover letter, references, and portfolio.  I figure I could link my classroom blog to it.  Links to Facebook, Twitter and Flickr could be there as well.  Again I do run into the question of whether or not my wife and I should have separate blogs or a team one?
  3. Using Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and Linkedin.  After looking through each of these sites a little more closely I can definitely see the benefit of using them for finding a new teaching position.  I currently use Facebook as a tool only for keeping in touch with family and friends.  I think I should probably set up a new account using my brand and be a site for more professional use?  I have both Twitter and Flickr accounts, but have hardly scratched the surface as to understanding them properly or exploiting their potential in a job search.  Linkedin I fully admit I have only glanced at and will need the time to fully look it over.  All of these will need to represent my/our brand as well.
  4. Clothes. This just gives me the excuse to go shopping and better look the part.

Wow!  Things have really changed since I got my job in Japan.  Over the past 3 months that has become very apparent.  My wife and I really have a lot of work to do to catch up and make ourselves marketable.  Coetail has helped a ton, but there is still a lot of things to work on.  Good thing I have the summer and 3 more classes to understand and work on things.  If anyone has any other words of wisdom , please do not hesitate to let me know.

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One response to “How would/should I create a brand for myself?

  1. Best of luck! Alex and I used to share a website, but recently we decided to split. Even when our resumes, etc, were together, it was always two sides of the same site. Now it just feels more natural to have two separate spaces – each one that really represents us as an educator and an individual. There’s no reason that two links can’t be listed on an e-mail to an admin team. And, you always send two separate resumes, right? Just my two cents…

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