Building a Jack of All Trades - Polymath Personal Brand

TL:DR | The rise of the internet creator, and the generalists coincide. Whether you are a jack of all trades person, or a specialist. Understanding how to grow, and build out your personal brand is key to success!


4 min read

When it comes to your online presence that is what encompasses your personal brand. From the pictures on your Instagram, to the followers you have on LinkedIn, and most importantly the content you create.

Now most creators, especially in the space of teaching new creators, they always say:

Niche down, niche down, niche down.

This is usually because of two reasons:

  1. Visibility, as if you have only one topic then the SEO comes more easily, and people who care about that topic in particular can find you. That way you have a chance to grow by carving out your own space. Finding your "blue ocean", insteading of fighting in the red ocean.
  2. The other reason is something I ย have mentioned in my videos a lot, is that we live in a specialist society. Our cultural norm is to focus on one thing, and that is what our brains conform to, is the idea that we should be good at one thing. Should be known for ONE thing.

The Problem with that is...

Many people have many interests they want to create content about, and this goes for the general populace, and not even counting per se the generalist/jack of all trades types.

We as a species always do more than one, even specialists, as we have hobbies, and usually multiple jobs/careers throughout our lives. Many people may not know I have worked for Escape Room companies in my town. Spent a lot of time learning about them, playing them, and running them. I would say I know more than 80% of the population, but it isn't a topic I talk about publically now that I don't work there. That is just one example, and every person has something like that.


As Creators we Need to Source our Content Niche

Meaning we need to find that "holy grail" of a topic that we win at creating content with, and that could be planting, or gaming, or whatever. Just something that can light the fire, and actually make us grow.

It is all about that first growth wave to get started, and that is why they always say niche down. Here is where I think it differs though, as what if you are a generalist like me? Or Santi, whose podcast was the motivation behind this post and video?

We find ourselves in a rut because we can't figure out if we should do it all, at least over time, or just pick one and stick to that. Or what Santi brought to my attention when I interview him, is to do them all at once, but just separately.


Here is the Interview with Santi Younger


Here is what I think you should do

If you are pulled between many areas, then that is okay, as you don't have to choose... eventually. In the present moment, micro-focus, choose something you can start with. You have to start somewhere, and trying to do it all at once will be too much.

This advice is more catered to new creators, something starting a podcast or channel, but can be applied to people who are already started.

It takes time to grow, which is why I don't stress too hard on my numbers. Even if you niche down it can take a couple years, so you might as well follow your multiple passions when pursuing. Instead of choosing only one, and then regretting that you didn't do the others too.

When you get started you do need to micro focus, so that your macro focus can be polymathic. Instead of juggling everything at once, it is a matter of quick changes, and switching. Like my "phases", but smaller, which incidentally is why I created the OmniContent series to be my excuse to create anything.

How you structure channel is key too, as since people may not find you as much, then you need to keep people even more so. Retention is your number one goal, rather than attention. As attention comes over time, but both are important even for the specialist niche channels too.

The idea is to make it as easy as possible for someone to view the content that THEY prefer, if they found you for magic or for swimming as a topic. Then that is the content you should steer them towards.

Make playlists, link your end videos together (takes extra time but is worth it), and make consolidation posts to curate lists.

Make your channel trailer as rich as possible, and explain to them why they should subscribe, even if it is divergent topics.


If it is a personal brand

Then that is what I am mainly thinking about, but this can go for companies too. I think many channels fail to curate and organize their content properly. Regardless if it is one niche or many.

The Meta Niche

Something else I suggest is finding a niche that is broad, for me it is the actual polymathy ideal, the concept of being a multi-specialist. That is my umbrella niche, that encompasses all the other topics. That gives me the excuse to talk about a variety of things I am knowledgeable about.

Since is it is a PERSONAL brand, then it is all about YOU. Literally that is the point, it isn't an ego thing, but rather a way for you to curate your content like I said. Otherwise other creators or news makers will curate your online branding for you. That is not something you want to leave out there. Sure press is great, and bad press is still better than no press, but you want whatever press to lead people to you in your own domain.

Check out Youpreneur

Speaking of personal branding a great creator and content to learn from:

https://youpreneur.com/


In Conclusion

Finding what is best for YOU is key, and if you think you NEED multiple topics to be fully satisfied then I support you. Just start off small, pick one base like YouTube or podcast or blog, and one initial niche. Mine was Modular Education, particularly through my Modular DIY Degree, which allowed me to learn the skills I needed for video making.

I didn't know what I needed until AFTER I started, and I would confidently argue that I did more research than anyone. I consumed all sorts of learning materials from courses to books to videos, blogs, podcasts, and more. Regardless, it wasn't until I did it that mattered.

Same for the interviews, I was well prepared, and probably over prepared. I didn't know how to fully structure it until after around 5-6 interviews, and I would assume many people that hits at around 12.

All in all, start one, THEN you can grow it out to many.

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