As an entrepreneur, you need to understand that the business world is full of many businesses and yours is just one out of maybe a million or a billion business even in your specific niche. The competition can be breathtaking, the more reason why you must take branding very seriously so that your business is clearly distinguished amongst competition.
Now, to begin with, understand first and foremost what personal branding is not. Personal branding is not personal image; personal image is more of a visual representation of you or your business. Personal branding is intentional.
Personal branding is creating an impression around a leading attribute. Oftentimes, branding doesn’t project all of you but rather projects a part of you or your business to make people see you in a certain way. Personal branding is simply managing audience perception.
Fast rising brand strategist and social media brand positioning expert, Vanessa Lau defines personal branding as the conscious and intentional effort to create or influence public perception of an individual by positioning them as an authority and elevating their credibility; this ideally differentiates them from their competitors.
In my own opinion, personal branding would simply mean to harmonize who you are and what you do with what people think and how they feel about your brand.
What comes to your mind when you hear popular names like Coca-Cola, Apple, Microsoft, Bugatti, etc.?
There is an effect these companies have been able to create around their brands over the years, now that’s branding.
So quickly, I want to give you just four (4) steps you will find useful in attempting to brand yourself or your business.
STEP 1-DEFINE YOUR BRAND ARCHETYPE
An archetype is something that serves as a model for every other copies. Your brand archetype is therefore the image your brand portrays and the feeling it conveys. Truth is, customers connect with your brand archetype on an emotional level. This is the reason a billionaire would decide to but a Rolls Royce, limited edition; it depicts their worth and class.
There are 12 brand archetypes popularly acclaimed, but discussing the 12 is beyond the scope of this article. You can find useful information on these 12 brand archetypes and popular companies that fits into each description if you just click this link https://info.hellostepchange.com/download-exploring-brand-archetypes-ebook- and you can later let me know in the comment section if you found it really helpful and what you think your own brand archetype is.
STEP 2-CREATE YOUR CONTENT CONSCIOUSLY
Speaking of intentional content creation, this will refer to both tangibles like your product and intangibles like your messages and so on. Being intentional with your content will require that you build your content around your brand values and pillars. Vanessa Lau advices using a 3×3 method, i.e. your 3 core values of your brand and 3 pillars for your content creation. For instance, as a person and as a business our 3 core values are; high quality service delivery, efficiency and simplicity, while our content revolves around just these 3 pillars-branding, marketing and sales.
STEP 3=BE CONSISTENT
So goes the popular saying, “repetition is the mother of knowledge”-anonymous. Creating a brand and an identity will require consistency; keep putting out the same image persistently. Maintain standard in your products/services and every content that you releases. The more consistent you are, the easier it is for you to create and reinforce the image you want to create.
STEP 4-HAVE A BRAND GUIDE
Now, this is essentially important for those of you who outsource some of your operations to others, like graphics design, creative writing, etc. Having a brand guide will help them know what to include and what not to in your production. Your brand guide will contain your visual brand identity such as your logo, fonts, colour pallets and it will also detail intangibles such as your business name, message, values, tone, voice, etc.
Doing these 4 things is not all that branding entails, but it is surely a step in the right direction when it comes to creating and positioning your brand.
Do you need professional advice or help with your branding?
Reach us at Optimal-Edge to use our services.