Reinventing Personal Branding Building a Personal Brand through Content on YouTube

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The study explores the phenomenon of personal branding on social media and in particular, examines how YouTubers create their personal brands online. The explorative and inductive approach has involved qualitative content analysis of a total of 72 videos produced by four successful YouTubers during several years of their social media presence. The findings reveal three major stages of the personal branding process, which are not sequential, but rather, were found to run in parallel over time: loyalty to personal brand profile, promotion of multiple social media accounts and addressing the audience and encouraging co-creation. The personal brand content is found to comprise such elements as the personality of the YouTuber, typical topics, the tone of voice, environment (setting) as well as product brands. Among its key features are clarity, consistency, and authenticity, resembling those of a product/service brand. The study proves the applicability of classical principles of product branding and typology of consumer-brand relationships as well as brand meaning co-creation to the personal branding phenomenon, while at the same time highlighting the complex nature of this phenomenon as being “born global”, purposeful and highly interactive. Thus, personal branding might be seen as a re-invention of the traditional branding but on a completely different level of interaction and visibility. Among managerial recommendations is the need for managers to closely monitor and analyze what is being said about their brands by the famous personalities on-line as these individuals are capable to influence the consumers’ perceptions about brands and companies.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Business Administration


  • personal brand, famous personalities, consumers’ perceptions
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-35
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of International Business Research and Marketing
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Nov 25
Publication categoryResearch