It’s All About You

The summer of 2022 was about work and raising puppy Dylan. At six months old, training has plateaued to ‘OMG, what have you got in your mouth!’  and ‘You know what “sit” means, I’m not speaking a foreign language”. 

On the business end, I’m restructuring some of my services to meet clients’ needs as they find themselves in challenging economic times. For many businesses, efficient growth has never been more of a priority, and marketing is a vital part of the plan. However, one direction often overlooked is personal branding.

Many business owners find personal branding an uncomfortable, even creepy process, but ultimately, you are your business. If you keep it simple and authentic, it doesn’t have to be either. Creating a personal brand doesn’t mean you over-share or re-create yourself as the owner of the ‘perfect’ company.

Personal branding is the conscious and intentional effort to create and influence public perception of an individual by positioning them as an authority in their industry, elevating their credibility, and differentiating themselves from the competition, to increase their circle of influence, and have a larger impact.

The process of personal branding involves finding your uniqueness, building a reputation on the things you want to be known for, and then allowing yourself to be known for them. Ultimately, the goal is to create something that conveys a message, and that can be monetized. – Wikipedia

It takes courage to put yourself out there until you identify the three elements you already possess. (1) You founded a business which is the foundation of your story. (2) You bring to it a unique set of skills and experiences. (3) What you offer your customers/clients will bring them value.  

There are many outlets; social media, blogging, videos, networking, and speaking opportunities. Decide which works best for you, then stick with it regularly. A content calendar will help with this.

How best to make this work?

a) If you need fresh ideas, monitor your industry’s ‘big guys’ to see what they are doing.  

b) Look into potential partners; sharing the ‘stage’ with a compatible business owner lets clients see you differently.   

c) Your social media following doesn’t have to be large, what matters is how they respond to your business through each platform and in turn how the business interacts with them.  

d) Celebrate your competition; like and share their posts. A healthy relationship with them speaks volumes about the caliber of business person you are.  

e) Passionate about the environment, climate change, animals, a specific charity? When you share your beliefs this tells people a lot about you. Don’t overdo it though or be too strident; anger should never be part of branding.

f) A picture is worth a thousand words; fun and candid photographs and videos of yourself, with your staff, working at your office or shop help customers put a face to the business.

g) Share a few personal stories; when frame correctly this can help your brand’s focus. Everything you put out there should complement your business’s mission and vision.

While personal branding feels a bit awkward initially, the process becomes more natural with time, and you will soon be comfortable being your company’s public name and face. 

RESOURCES

Your Digital Presence: Personal Branding Online – LHM Strategic

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