It used to be that if you had a logo and a website you had a business brand. But today’s consumers demand a lot more. Branding for them is about the experience of being with you, the owner of that business.
Today businesses have to look a lot deeper when it comes to creating a personal brand that is in harmony with their business brand.
When you have a strong personal brand, you become a mini-celebrity in your field. With that strong brand comes clout and credibility. People look up to you.
When people think of your industry, you’ll be the first one to come to mind. It also gives your offerings a higher perceived value—suddenly you can charge what you are worth to clients who are happy to pay.
If you want to build a dynamic and effective personal brand that will help grow your business but don’t know where to start, let’s break it down.
1. Embracing consistency
When prospects know what to expect of you it creates a feeling of familiarity and trust. That’s why consistency of everything you do and how you present yourself is so important.
But many business owners go willy-nilly with their brand, not paying attention to colors, fonts, graphics or style of messaging that all make up a personal and business brand. This can be confusing to your audience. Your brand should be developed with consistency and standards that reflect well on how you want your business to be perceived.
For instance, take colors—one way to be consistent with your business brand on a personal level is to wear similar colors to your visual brand. For many years, Mari Smith wore her signature turquoise blue wherever she went, which was a match for her business brand. She has since changed this strategy, but it was very effective in her brand positioning while she was building her leadership presence.
Dana J. Smithers is another one who fully embraces her brand messaging by consistently wearing only her business brand colors: Black, red and white.
Consistency is king when it comes to branding. Aside from your personal appearance, other things you do also affect your personal brand. For instance, if you say you provide a weekly newsletter, you need to honor that commitment and make sure a newsletter goes out every week. If you post twice a day on Facebook, keep up that frequency.
That kind of consistency will win over the trust of your followers, which will make them more likely to make a purchase when they are in need of your product or services.
2. Forming a compelling story
Your story is the single biggest differentiator for your business. Make your story be a part of your personal brand.
Hundreds of people may sell what you have, but you are the only one who is exactly like you.
Your followers yearn to know who you are, how you got to where you are at and why you love what you do. Think of it as your Cinderella rags to riches story. It allows people to see how you came from no-where, learned the lesson, and came out on top.
Connecting to your story gives followers that feel good, heart-to-heart connection with you. Once you craft your story you can add it on your about page, your bio, in presentations, your book, and more!
3. Owning authenticity
When you share from your heart you inspire and connect with people on a deeper level. Share the real you. Let them see your values. Talk about what you stand for. Give them a peek behind the scenes so they feel included.
4. Being visible and accessible
Out of sight means out of mind. There are many ways you can showcase your personal brand by becoming more visible in front of your target market. Here are just a few ideas:
– Have a great, professional headshot.
– Post photos of you in action at work.
– Leave your office and go to networking meetings.
– Get featured in the media.
– Be a podcast or telesummit guest.
– Show photos of events you attend and the people you meet on Social Media.
– Hold webinars and Facebook Live Q&A sessions with your followers.
– Follow up and nurture your network through newsletters so you are unforgettable.
5. Creating a value proposition
This is such an important brand element but sadly most businesses do not have a clear value proposition statement. A value proposition is a clear declaration that explains who you serve, how you serve them, and why your solution is better.
A good one is clear, specific and easily understood. When you can articulate this in a compelling way, it’s a powerful client attraction tool.
6. Defining a focused ideal client
Many businesses aren’t clear about their ideal customer. They cast their net too wide when it comes to customers.
Once you clearly identify who is in your tribe, it not only supercharges your marketing messages but also helps you better understand how to present yourself in front of them in order to win them over.
7. Showcasing your expertise
Personal branding also means being the best and most knowledgeable at what you do. Don’t just be a follower of other top experts, instead lead the industry with your perspectives, findings, and views.
Create studies to publish new results. Develop your own signature system. Craft terms that become the coined phrase for the industry.
The more you differentiate yourself from others in your industry the more you will become the go-to expert people will be drawn to.
DISCLAIMER: This article expresses my own ideas and opinions. Any information I have shared are from sources that I believe to be reliable and accurate. I did not receive any financial compensation inwriting this post, nor do I own any shares in any company I’ve mentioned. I encourage any reader to do their own diligent research first before making any investment decisions.
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