by Juan Robin II
Who doesn’t want to be an entrepreneur nowadays? While the survival rate for new establishments after five years is barely above 50 percent (as of 2015), this doesn’t stop people from wanting to venture out on their own and create a company they can be proud of.
For entrepreneurs, branding is a key factor that can affect the rest of their business. It has a direct impact on their reputation, growth, and revenue.
In order to keep your personal and your business brand on track, it’s essential to create a positive brand development strategy. Here are some tips to help you out.
Know What You Want to Do
The biggest question when starting out in entrepreneurship is this:
“What would you do if money were no object?”
You shouldn’t begin a business with just money on your mind. Turn it the other way; choose what you have a purpose and passion for, and then figure out how to make money from it.
Why would you ever do something you don’t enjoy? You have the power to do whatever you want (within the law), so don’t settle for anything less than what you love.
When choosing your niche – because you definitely need one – list out:
- What you’re good at
- What you like to do daily
- What you read about the most online (or podcasts you listen to regularly)
- What you’re an expert in
From this list, knock off ones that don’t excite you. These are deadweight that you don’t want to build a brand around. Find that one that gives you goosebumps – this is your true personal brand.
Once you have your niche, you can move on with your brand development strategy.
Choose Your Platform Carefully
Your brand is only as good as the content it posts. And the content is only as good as the platform it’s on.
Choosing where you publish your personal brand content has a huge impact on how well it’s received by your audience.
Consider using social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Check out question forums like Quora, Reddit, and Yahoo! Answers. Take your own website into account.
Select a platform based on three things:
- Where does your primary target audience live online?
- Where are other companies in your industry posting?
- Which platforms are you great at?
All three questions are vital to your success.
You want to post where the potential fans are; without this optimal audience, you don’t get as many organic, raving individuals who love your content.
You also need to be where flourishing businesses in your niche are – don’t be a platform pioneer.
Lastly, you need to be good at posting on this platform. The nuances, images, and copy need to be on point, so make sure you have experience n these areas.
Network Like Crazy
After establishing your niche and platform, start connecting.
You want to have buddies in your industry. Any good brand development strategy involves reaching out to thought leaders within the niche. A personal brand is no different.
Collaborate with individuals and companies that have more followers than you. Also, consider those with the same amount of followers as you.
Be genuine when you approach other personal brands. Bring value to them well before you ask for value in return.
This goes a long way in grounding your personal brand in the industry.
Build a Genuine Following
When you post content related to your personal brand, the reach it gets depends on where it’s published and what message it conveys.
What this means is that you need to use smart copy tactics to gain the attention of a genuine following.
A genuine following is a group of people who are true fans of your content or products. They hang on your every word, buy your new products as soon as they drop, and even defend you against Internet trolls.
How do you get as many genuine followers as possible?
One way: Amazing SEO.
Keywords, meta tags, links, and more are all important to the overall user experience. You want your content to evoke emotion in your fans, as well as drive them to take action (i.e., buy your products).
Personal brands survive off of followings that crave the content optimized for their needs. SEO is the single best option to gain loyal followers.
Present Your Company’s Products Organically
This strategy has the ultimate goal of selling more of your company’s products. Do this organically, and you’ll make some serious revenue.
What does it mean to present products organically?
Just like your native content, your ads and marketing materials should be catered to the right audience, the right platform, and – most crucial – it needs to reflect your style.
Product content should look similar to your normal content. Same platform, same time, same personal brand.
Your brand development strategy should act as a guideline or template for any piece of content you post, product or otherwise.
The great thing about posting product content is that you’ll be giving access to people who actually want to buy. It isn’t just blindly throwing your product out into the world but presenting it to the individuals who have a literal need for it.
This goes without saying, but be your own brand. A brand development strategy is nothing if you aren’t original and yourself.
Personal brands need to have a unique, specific voice – one that your own mother could read or listen to and go, “Yep, that’s my child.”
Seeing as personal brand affects your company, your company should also be original and based on your worldviews. This is why the first step – Know What You Want to Do – is super vital.
If your business is about selling something you don’t believe in, your personal brand will be unoriginal, repetitive, and straight up boring.
But if you choose something you love, then your true colors will show in your personal content. This creates a fresh brand around you, helping your business flourish.
Brand Development Strategy Is Essential for Success
You need to have a plan in mind if you want your personal brand to coincide with your company’s brand.
With this continuity, customers and fans will get addicted to your content, products, and services. An amazing personal brand makes an amazing company, which builds incredible products for the people you care about.
If you’re on the lookout for tools to carry out your personal brand development strategy, including a free business reputation audit, check out our list of SEO tools!