There are 2 entrepreneurs; each have about the same number of products in the same market. They have roughly the same amount of time in the online marketing sphere. By all accounts, from a bird’s eye view, things are fairly equal between them.
However, one is doing very well, sales are brisk and income climbs with each passing month; the other is struggling, making but a fraction compared to the other. You know what the difference is – it’s the power of personal branding.
A robust personal brand makes all the difference in the world. In short, it gives you more choices (opportunities) not to mention better quality choices. You’ve witnessed this throughout your life. Better known brands, that is – bigger brands, are chosen more often because people recognize and, generally speaking, trust them.
Here’s how you begin from ground zero if you dare to stake a claim and decide to create and build your own personal brand.
1. Your vision
Think about what a personal brand is. It’s you, and you are unique. You’ve heard of the Unique Selling Proposition, the USP? Your personal brand is much like the USP, but it’s not the same thing, because it separates and distinguishes you from everyone else on the entire planet.
How do you want the world, and your audience particularly, to perceive and think about you?
It’s best to write your thoughts down in response to that question. What are your personal values? Not a corny question, either, because they impact everything you do including your business decisions. Your values drive your personal brand and how you want to be perceived.
2. Your target audience and/or ideal customer profile
You likely are familiar with this area, but do you know your target audience? If not, then do the research and get to know them as intimately as possible. Once done, you’ll know how to refine your marketing and advertising. Your efforts will yield higher profits. It’s straightforward and an argument extolling the virtues of doing this important work should not be necessary.
3. Brand building
The nuts and bolts of putting it together and using all the various tools at your disposal and within your ability to use. You need exposure and lots of it; media and press releases, targeted advertising and building your network through industry events just to name a few. And do explore what you can do in both the online and offline spaces. Do not neglect offline resources.
4. Identify leaders in your industry and connect
This strategy may require an investment of time because these people are busy and other people desire to connect with them. Finding these people out is perhaps the easiest part. The surest path to rejection is to approach them with open hand. Think in terms of cultivating a relationship and helping them in some way.
You can try another tact which is to enlist the help of paid mentoring but only from an established industry leader. Yes, this one will cost you out-of-pocket but will be the easiest way to save time and fast-track your efforts. A well-connected mentor can make introductions and open doors.
5. Be transparent
You have unique aspects and characteristics that can be leveraged in a favorable way. Avoid being less than transparent; be your self. Some entrepreneurs have very successfully leveraged negative personality traits, just as an example. Write down as much about your self as you can think of; then ask what can be leveraged to your benefit.
There are tons and tons of examples, spanning decades, that illustrate the power of branding and personal branding. No need to try to convince you, or anyone, about this. Simply expressed, a strong and even powerful personal or business brand will transform your business; propel it to possibly dizzying heights.
If your current level of success is not where you want it to be, here’s how you can do something about it. We talked briefly about how a mentor fast-tracks efforts and opens doors…