So you want to build a personal brand? Congratulations! In today’s global world, building a personal brand helps open up a ton of career and monetization opportunities.
But if you want to do it – you’ll need for right tool. As far as that goes, I think WordPress is the best solution for most people to build a personal brand because with WordPress, you can build a website with all the necessary functionality without needing to know how to code.
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In this guide, I’m going to give you some tips on exactly how you can build a personal brand with WordPress.
Let’s get started!
Think About What Goes Into Your Personal Brand
Ok, before you start using WordPress to build your personal brand, it’s important to think about what actually goes into a personal brand.
As a freelance writer who puts food on the table via my personal brand, this is an area in which I have some pretty good expertise.
Generally, here’s what you’re going to want on your personal branding website:
- Great domain name – most of the time this will be your actual name (or as close to your name as possible, if it’s already taken).
- Stellar WordPress theme – there are tons of WordPress personal branding themes that can help you showcase yourself in style.
- Killer homepage – your homepage is what most visitors will see first. You need to make it awesome with things like testimonials and skill lists.
- Portfolio – your portfolio shows what you can do. No matter what type of work you do, you can probably come up with a portfolio to build your credibility.
- Services – once you wow people with your portfolio, you need to actually tell them what type of services you offer.
- Contact form – what’s the point of building a personal brand if people can’t easily get in touch with you?
- Blog – this helps you get more traffic to your site and establishes your authority in whatever it is you do.
- Email list – this helps you stay connected with your visitors even after they leave your site.
Below, I’ll take you through how you can use WordPress to accomplish all of these!
Step 1: Pick A Host And Create Your WordPress Website
If you already have hosting and WordPress installed, feel free to click here to skip ahead to the next step. If not, let’s start at the beginning!
Before you can build a personal brand with WordPress, you need an…actual WordPress website to work with. Makes sense, right?
Well, if you want your own self-hosted WordPress.org site, you’re going to need hosting (WordPress.com isn’t a good option for building a personal brand – here’s the difference between WordPress.org and WordPress.com).
To get started, we always recommend Bluehost because:
- It’s affordable.
- You can install WordPress with one click.
- It has plenty of power to start you off.
- You get a free domain name when you sign up for hosting.
To get started, go to Bluehost and click the Get Started Now button:
On the next screen, choose your plan. To get started, the basic plan is fine (you can always upgrade later, if needed):
Next, fill in your desired domain name and click next:
On the next screen, you’ll need to enter your:
- Account information
- Package information – you don’t need to purchase any of the add-ons
- Payment information
Once you finish signing up for your account, you can install WordPress from your cPanel dashboard after logging in:
Follow the user friendly installation wizard to complete the WordPress installation process. Then, you’re ready to move on!
You have a ton of options when it comes to choosing a theme for your new website. If you want to skim a huge list, check out this big list of 50+ personal brand WordPress themes.
If you’re looking for something a bit more curated, here are some of my personal favorite themes for building a personal brand.
When it comes to personal branding, Divi is probably the most popular option. It’s used by hundreds of thousands of websites, many of which are for personal brands.
Here are some reasons Divi is great for personal branding:
- It includes the Divi Builder page builder, which helps you implement many of the tips I’ll talk about in a second.
- It has pre-built templates to implement common features like portfolios, services, contact forms, and more.
- There’s a huge third-party community that you can turn to for support.
Divi is part of the $89 Elegant Themes package.
Authority Pro is a personal branding theme for the Genesis Framework. It features a homepage that already integrates many of the principles I’ll outline in later sections. So if you want to save some time, it’s another great option.
Authority Pro costs $129.95, including the Genesis Framework.
Zerif is a freemium WordPress theme that makes it easy to build an engaging homepage for your personal brand. It’s also one of the most popular themes at WordPress.org, which means it’s easy to get help if you need it. There’s also a Pro version if you need more functionality.
Step 3: Build A Homepage That Showcases Skills And Testimonials
Once you choose your theme, it’s time to build a homepage that puts your personal brand front and center. That means including elements like:
- A short, attention-grabbing headline
- A scannable list of skills
- Testimonials from past clients/co-workers
- A call to action for an email list or offer (if you want to aggressively promote something)
- Other pertinent information
If you didn’t pick one of the themes above (or another similar theme that already includes a homepage template), you might need some help to do this. That’s why WordPress page builders were invented.
Check out this post for some of the best WordPress page builders.
With any of those page builders, you can add all the aforementioned elements without needing to know any code. All you do is drag and drop them on a live preview of your page until you like how your page looks!
This personal brand homepage was built with a page builder.
Step 4: Create A Portfolio So People Can See Your Work
Once you create your homepage, the next page that you’ll likely want to tackle is your Portfolio page. While not every single personal branding website needs a portfolio, if you’re planning to offer any services, it’s a must-have for building your credibility.
Many of the WordPress page builder page builders include pre-built elements or sections to help you quickly create a portfolio. Or, if you’re creating a visually-focused portfolio, you can use a free plugin like Portfolio Gallery.
An example of a portfolio built with a page builder
Step 5: Build A Services Page So People Know What You Do
Now that you’ve got people hooked with your homepage and portfolio, it’s time to tell them what you can actually do for them on your Services page. Again, if you’re not planning to offer specific services, you might not need this page.
But if you do want to offer services, clearly outlining them is a great way to let potential clients know exactly what they can expect.
Not to beat a dead horse, but once again, the best way to build this type of page is with a page builder.
Another example of how you can use a page builder
Step 6: Add A Contact Form So People Can Get In Touch
Building a personal brand isn’t much use if people can’t get in touch with you. Once you build out the pages that will do the heavy lifting for your brand, you should add a Contact page so that your visitors can send you messages.
An example of a contact page built with WPForms
Step 7: Blog To Establish Authority And Generate Traffic
If you want to build a personal brand, blogging is essential for two reasons:
- It helps you get more visitors to your site.
- It boosts your perceived authority and builds trust with your visitors.
Because WordPress started as a blogging platform, it’s easy to get started blogging with WordPress.
Just go to Posts → Add New and start writing about whatever it is your brand is built on!
While it might be tempting to start posting whatever random thoughts you have, I recommend that you stick to targeted content that fits your desired brand.
Step 8: Create An Email List To Connect With Readers After They Leave Your Site
Finally, if you want to create a connection with your visitors that goes beyond your website, building an email list is one of the best ways to do that.
How do you build an email list on WordPress? You guessed it – with plugins! And as luck would have it, we’ve previously written about some of the best WordPress list building plugins.
Pick one, install it, and you’re ready to start building an email list!
Wrapping Things Up
And that wraps up our guide on how to build a personal brand using WordPress.
In the end, it’s mostly about using the right WordPress themes and plugins to build out the basic pages that are necessary for your brand.
A good personal brand WordPress theme will get you most of the way there. After that, a WordPress page builder, possibly combined with a contact form plugin and a list building plugin, can help round out the rest of the functionality you’ll need for your personal branding website.