Create Your Personal Branding Strategy in 4 Simple Steps
Do you remember the days before eCommerce, when small businesses sold their products directly to the people in their town? You might have noticed at those times, the business owners were trying to develop connections with their customers. It hasn’t always been a “hey, how are you?” relationship, but the buyers had at least known who they were buying products from.
However, with the explosion of eCommerce, you would now expect such owner-buyer relationships to be valued less. But if you could see that all brands, including the online stores around the globe, are using social media and other related platforms to interact with their people, it’s a clear indication that efforts to make such connections do exist.
Still, are you thinking what does this really mean for an average business owner like you?
Well, it means, nothing but if you want to develop your brand either online or offline, you need to focus on making connections. And the easiest way to do it is personal branding.
Personal Branding – What Is It?
Personal branding is the intentional effort you take to promote yourself. It isn’t that much different from typical business branding; but rather than marketing a store or product, you are going to market yourself. As a branding company with almost a decade of experience, we could say that keeping just one person as the prime face of your business, and promoting him the right way, can end up being a powerful marketing tool for your business.
But in the drenched online marketplace of today, how are you going to do that personal branding for you? That’s what this article is all about.
But Why Is It So Important?
Does it make sense if we say that people never do business with agencies, but with the people they like?
Yes, there is something about a connection a human being of a company makes with another human being in creating enduring customer loyalty. Indeed, this is one of the major reasons why influencer marketing has become so popular over the years.
Many big companies have always used this tactic of personal branding with the main people in their business. Apple has been using Steve Jobs, Virgin has been using Richard Branson, and Tesla has been using Elon Musk, as personalities to promote their brand’s mission
All that being said, every business uses different approaches for personal branding to attract a countless number of users to their websites and social media profiles. Of these, let’s get into the most efficient strategies for building up a perfect personal brand through four simple steps.
STEP #1: Identify Your Target Audience
If this sounds like your typical ‘brainstorming’ session, then you are wrong! Probably, you need to go beyond that and decide who you want to appeal to and how you want to be perceived by them. So, how could you pull that off?
From our experience of working with clients from different verticals, we could guide you to start by determining your target set audience. This will not only make it easy for you to figure out the type of content your brand should deliver, but will also help you to plan how you should present it to your audience. You won’t communicate to an audience of Gen Z as you do to a group of C-level executives, right??
Once you have clearly identified the audience set, try to recognize their pain points and common interests. This won’t just support your branding process but will act as a strong foundation on which you can start to build your brand.
STEP #2: Tell Your Story
Now you have precise planning in place – that’s great, but it means nothing if you are unable to build stories accordingly.
And, let’s go ahead and face it – developing stories that can attract your audience is going to be a tough battle, at least in the initial stages. Fortunately, taking care of a few things can really help.
You can start your marketing process by sharing your stories through guest blogs and social media ads. But what content should go into these? We’ll advise you to begin with stories that are centered around two principal elements:
- Who are you?
- What are you trying to gain, and for what purpose?
Since these would seem a little generic for you, let’s get into some more details you may include under both of these.
Under “Who are you?“, you may consider having:
- What are your professional and personal experiences?
- What are the things you enjoy doing and are passionate about?
- What are the unique qualities that you would like to be magnified?
- What are the matters that you value the most?
Now, under “What are you trying to gain, and for what purpose?“, try to answer:
- What are your vision and mission?
- What is your ultimate goal?
- What legacy are you capable of leaving behind?
- What feeling do you want to evoke in people’s minds when they see your name?
The success of your personal branding finally will depend on how genuinely you answer these questions. While that being said, we’ll say that you don’t have to reveal everything about you in the story as it can have unfavorable effects. Just unveil only those aspects that you feel can create a positive impact on your viewers, because after hearing your story, they should be eager to work with you, and not against you.?
STEP #3: Consistency Is The Key
Consistency isn’t optional when it comes to personal branding. According to a study by entrepreneur.com, “it takes almost five to seven impressions for someone to remember a brand”. This means that showing up every day with relevant content before your audience is the best strategy to rank higher among your competitors.
Whether it be through blog posts, articles, social media ads and posts, videos, or podcasts, you need to keep on providing valuable content to your audience. Luckily, with step #2, you might have developed personal brand stories to distribute. Now, while delivering these stories, consider being consistent on any one or two media, rather than switching between multiple platforms.
And whenever sharing your content, try to incorporate visual elements as well. The study below shows how much raise in engagement was seen by different brands that used visual storytelling with a specific brand character on Facebook.
Boost In Facebook engagement By Using The Brand Character
You could also note from the above infographic that not all brand characters have contributed well towards creating engagement. See the negative numbers shown by Green Giant and Travelocity. ?
This indicates that it is imperative to split-test the visual elements you use for branding to check your audiences’ responses. If you are just starting up, we would recommend capturing the professional headshots of the person who you are going to brand and using them over all your audience touch points – be it online or offline.
STEP #4: Make Sure You Are Discoverable
Just showing up consistently with the best content is not enough. Making yourself discoverable for the ideal clients is also a major factor that will judge your personal branding success. With various techniques and strategies, you can make yourself discoverable to all your potential clients.
One such popular strategy is Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) where you optimize your content to rank higher in the search engine. This means you can write meaningful content, rich in keywords. Along with that, remember to optimize all your content – be it text, image, social media content, video descriptions, or photo captions.
However, if you are using social media to promote yourself, make sure to use relevant hashtags. For more assistance on it, read ?? How to use Instagram hashtags for business growth.
Personal branding is definitely one of the most challenging forms of marketing to pull off. However, it is also one of the most significant ROI actions marketing experts will ask you to pursue.
While this article will help you to plan out what you’ll need to connect yourself with your target audience, having the right assistance from a digital branding agency will help you take advantage of all the branding platforms at your disposal. Parel Creative is one such leading branding agency in Kochi and Singapore with ample experience in helping clients around the globe to implement personal branding strategies that did wonders for their businesses. Now if you’d need us to assist you with your branding efforts, don’t hesitate to get in touch.