Businesses building a brand for themselves is a common idea today. Eric Schmidt, the former CEO of Google, said, “Brands are the solution.” Business branding has never been easy, but it has become more streamlined. At present, there are more than half a million recognizable brands in the world, and the number is rapidly growing as every new startup is prioritizing branding.
With business branding getting more competitive, new business owners need to focus on branding themselves and creating a personal brand.
Your personal brand is an indication of the best you have to offer in terms of performance, contributions, and value to your next client or customer. You must have heard of entrepreneurs like Dan Lok, Grant Cardone, Gary V., and Dan Bilzerian. But, do you know the brands or companies they own? Probably not. That is, in a nutshell, the power of personal branding.
Let’s take a look at why personal branding is the need of the hour for startup and small business owners, and how it can help accelerate your business performance.
What is personal branding?
Google your name, and see what pops up. If it’s nothing or some random faces, you probably have not invested enough time in developing your personal brand.
Personal branding is defined as a continuous, intentional effort to create and influence your public perception by positioning yourself as an expert and authority in your industry. Powerful personal branding elevates your credibility and differentiates you from your competition, thereby providing you an advantage in your career and profession.
Importance of Personal Branding
Branding yourself can lead to potential personal and professional benefits. Here’s why personal branding is so important for small business and startup owners.
It differentiates you from the crowd
A personal brand helps you demonstrate your skills, knowledge, expertise, and thought leadership about a particular industry, sector, niche, or subject. You may not be the most knowledgeable person in your field, but if your name comes up when someone searches for it, you are already looking better than your competitors.
Moreover, more than 80 percent of customers trust a company if its senior management members are active on social media.
By building a brand for yourself, you get an opportunity to show your potential customers what you can offer and what makes you better than your competition. And with every field of business becoming more vying, standing out of the crowd is all you need to outshine your competitors.
A personal brand lays the foundation for your future success. It can help you achieve an array of professional and personal goals and help you discover several opportunities in your career.
Personal branding includes but is not limited to empowering business owners. In addition to providing new clients, promotions, partnerships, and business opportunities, personal branding can also lead you to the following opportunities:
- Speaking engagements
- Job interviews
- Higher education
It makes you more credible
The marketing world is changing, and so are customer preferences. Most consumers, especially millennials, no longer trust big names and brands that rely on traditional marketing techniques. “Shop Small” is the new trend that is igniting slowly, thus, making influencer advertising so effective. People will purchase from you if they can connect from you, and they are more likely to connect to someone who looks and talks like them instead of large organizations rolling out TV commercials.
Build lucrative connections
Porter Gale, a globally renowned public speaker and says, “Your network is your net worth.” Whether you are looking for business opportunities, new clients, jobs, or new employees, you are much more likely to hear about everything if you have a strong network.
However, people prefer connecting with those who are trustworthy, credible, and can add value to their lives. By utilizing personal branding, you can position yourself as a worthy connection, which may result in some excellent networking opportunities.
Control your reputation and image
Several factors can be controlling your reputation and image: the media, customers, or random commentators. Your personal brand is your reputation, and when you take control of your own image and branding, you can effortlessly deal with negative comments and attacks on your reputation.
Every business owner wants to charge more and be the most expensive yet the most loved brand in the industry. Apple, for example, offers some of the most expensive smartphones in the market, but yet, it has a market share of around 15 percent, making it one of the most popular smartphone brands in the world. Another example is Dan Lok, a marketing and copywriting genius, who is also regarded as one of the best high ticket closers in the world. His “High Ticket Closer” program is priced at $2,495, which is a significantly high price tag compared to other similar programs. But still, most people tend to go to Dan Lok. And the reason is obviously powerful personal branding.
When you build a brand for yourself, you can charge higher for your services and still be able to close clients without a hassle.
How to create a profitable and compelling personal brand?
Now that you know the importance of creating a personal brand, let’s dive into some easy steps that will help you develop your personal brand strategy.
Build a foundation: The first step to creating your personal brand is to lay a foundation and build upon it with confidence and authenticity. To build a strong foundation, you will need to find the special thing that makes your brand stand out. It can be anything, such as affordable pricing, simplicity of use, or high value for money. The key elements of personal branding you want to start piecing together are:
- Your brand vision
- Your brand mission
- Your brand personality
- Your brand message
Pick your target customers: A common mistake most people make when building a personal brand is to try to impress everyone. It is essential to understand that not everyone is your ideal client, and in order to find the perfect clients for your business, you’ll need to repel the ones you don’t want to work with. Consider the following aspects to develop your perfect clientele.
- Aspirations and desires
- Pain points and challenges
Create an offer and make it irresistible: The next step towards creating a profitable personal brand is to have something to sell that your target customers will love. Position yourself as a specialist and promise your clients a specific outcome. Follow this “Irresistible Offer Formula” to create a winning product for your brand:
What you love to do + What you do best + What your target consumers need the most = Irresistible offer
Optimize your website and social media: Having a personal website is a critical component of creating an online presence and personal brand. A well-designed, professional website, along with a strong presence on social media, can help your potential customers understand how you can help them, therefore, helping them make a decision quickly. Your website should consist of the following elements:
- A professional logo
- Your value proposition
- Social proof (media, testimonials)
- A clear call-to-action
- Valuable content
- Contact page
Besides, also have a powerful content strategy in place for both your website and social media channels to earn the trust of your target audience.
There has never been a better time to start a business. Thanks to technology and the internet, barriers to entrepreneurship have almost disappeared. But with each industry becoming more vying every day, branding yourself is essential to differentiate yourself from your competitors and outshine your competition.