Personal branding is not just about you. It’s not about showing the world how amazing you are at racquetball. It’s about how you can serve your clients, and why you are the best person to do so. We are all sales people. It doesn’t matter who or what you do, we all have something to sell. The best way to sell, is not to sell. Instead earn awareness, authenticity, respect and trust of your clients. This is what personal branding is about.
Today’s marketing landscape has made a big shift. Corporations are struggling. There is a big mistrust in companies and consumers are shifting towards small businesses. A few years ago, small business owners wanted to seem like they were a large company. Today, large companies want to seem like a small business. Consumers would much rather support someone local, someone they trust and connect with and someone they can proudly recommend.
A few examples of corporations that filed for bankruptcy protection in 2017: RadioShack (first filing in 2015), Payless and Toys R Us.
You want to have an identity. When someone mentions your name, you want them to have a clear view of what you do, and who you are.
Another example of a large iconic company that is struggling is Sears. When you think about Sears, what comes first to mind? We have all been there. Yet, it is hard to pin point what Sears stands for, what they specialize in and what you would go to them for that makes them unique.
Now let’s think about McDonalds? – Burgers, fast, Ronald McDonald house, the clown guy, happy meals etc. They have a strong identity.
Assuming you know what your demographic is, what you want your company to stand for, who you are, what is your ‘word’, what is your story. The best way to present it is online.
If you don’t have a website, you are falling behind and eventually will drop out of the race.
Your website is your hub. Most likely it’s the first-place people go to, when they research you. Make sure your message is clear, it is easy to navigate and well presented.
Your website is where your clients learn about what you do, who you are and what you stand for. This is where you will make a first impression. You only get one chance.
Most likely they have searched through a few different websites to find what they want. And most likely all those websites look the same and say the same. Be authentic, be personal and be you!
If you can, sell your product online. Radio Shack failed due to online sales. They lost to Amazon and Walmart. Walmart’s online sales are soaring, and their focus right now is more on e-commerce vs opening new stores.
Having a strong social media presence is essential. The goal of social media, is to send people to your website. Look at it as a funnel. Which social media channel you should be on, is completely up to who your demographic is.
Make sure that when someone visits your page, there is no doubt in their mind as to what you do. When you go to my Facebook page, you see lots of photos of babies, kids and families. I started a separate Facebook page for my portraits and business. There you see headshots, events and branding.
Create amazing content. You only have about 3 seconds or less to grab someone’s attention. When people wake up in the morning, the first thing most do, is to grab their phone and scroll through either in bed or on the potty. This is part of our morning ritual. Scroll, scroll, photo of a cat with their head stuck in a bag – pause 2 seconds – scroll, scroll – Ohh interesting video. Then you have about 7-10 seconds to keep their attention. Therefore, content is absolute key when it comes to social media.
Get in front of the camera:
When I look at how my organic reach is doing on Facebook, even after the latest algorithm update where FB officially became pay to play, I see a big difference in the type of post. Video’s do a little bit better then photos, but what does the best are what I call, professional selfies! They have over 3 times more reach with up to 5 times better reactions (likes, clicks and shares). The way Facebook works is, the more interaction you get with your post such as likes, clicks, comments and shares, the more people Facebook will show your post to. I have also posted phone selfies, they get about the same interaction as client photos I post. Think about it this way, a lot of your followers are friends and family and people that know and like you. When you post a professional photo of you, that complements you in the best way possible, people will interact. They will tell you how great you look, how fun this post is etc. In return Facebook will mark your post as important and start showing it to more of your followers. Who says friends and family isn’t important to business owners!!
Get personal and gain connection. People trust people. Some of you work for others or have people working for you or with you. What your company should be doing is to post a photo and introduction of their employees. A hypothetical insurance company could post something like this “Jane is our business insurance expert. Her clients commend her on her integrity and fast service. In her free time Jane likes to go hiking with her two dogs. She is very passionate about animal welfare and volunteers her time at the pound whenever she can.” Accompany this with a professional photo of Jane and her dogs. All of a sudden Jane isn’t just an insurance agent, she is a dog loving hard working insurance professional. Someone you now have a connection with and something you can relate with. Personal branding is about getting personal in a professional way.
So when you ask; What is Personal Branding? The answer is simple. It is about showing who are you, how can you build up trust, what type of content and expertise you can share, what can you do for others and what do you stand for?
What makes you unique, what is your story?
For a free phone consult contact me here!