You know the saying… people buy from those that they know, like, and trust.
It’s rare that someone will come to you to buy your product or service without having established some sort of relationship with you. And a relationship in this sense can be loosely defined as a virtual connection (i.e. social media).
And how do we establish those connections with a mass amount of people?
It’s via our personal brand.
Is that concept overwhelming to you?
Let me break it down simply.
Traditionally, we think about brands as companies or corporations that house products, and/or services that we buy or use. Take for instance, Apple. I’m a loyal customer to the Apple brand, mostly because when I think of Apple, I think of things like innovative, sleek, and dominating — all of which are things that my personality and my preferences gravitate toward.
This component of branding should be no different for solopreneurs (who most often overlook this critical step in building a business). However, instead of building a brand around your product or service, you are building a brand around YOU.
Here’s the scary truth — if you aren’t intentionally building your personal brand online, it’s being built for you (which is essentially how others choose to perceive you). And if your brand is all about you and what you want to be known for, then we need to reign that in and make sure you have 100% control over what that looks like. Because at the end of the day, you are NOT what you sell as a product or service.
Building a strong online presence with a personal brand takes time, but it does NOT have to be complicated. Let’s break it down into three basic steps.
Step 1. Define Your Personal Brand
Think of 3-5 things that you are passionate about, have unique strengths in, and/or resonate most with in this period of your life RIGHT NOW.
HINT: This may not have anything to do with the product or service that you sell.
(i.e. motherhood, cooking, personal growth, young professional, teacher, writing, skiing, photography)
Step 2. Develop a Brand Mission Statement
You know WHAT you are, but how do you want to use those strengths and passions to serve others? This should be a succinct sentence or two that incorporates who you are with how you want to connect with your audience.
(i.e. Inspiring mothers to build a career of their dreams and be a great mom/wife, too!)
Step 3. Develop Content That Aligns With Your Personal Brand ALWAYS
This is where we consistently work to build upon our personal brand and allow people to know, like and trust us. Create content that tells stories, that gives value to your readers, and allows your readers to feel like you are their BFF. Everytime we post or share something, we should be asking, “Is this in alignment with my brand and how I want to serve others?”
See? It’s simple. Don’t overcomplicate it, but DO remain patient and consistent while your build your personal brand.
OK, but wait, where does your business come into play here?
I’m going to let you in on a little secret…
The better you can get at building your personal brand and drawing people in with who you are and how you serve others, the LESS you need to worry about the actual products and services you sell. Those will be easy wins!
So YES, share your business with your followers, and DEFINITELY spread the word about your products and services, but sprinkle it in with the rest of your personal brand content and keep it in line with your brand mission statement. When someone who doesn’t know you very well comes over to stalk you on your newsfeed (you know we’ve all done it) — what kind of first impression will you make with the pictures and content that you’ve been displaying? Are you someone that they want to be connected with?
And that's the ultimate secret sauce; when we can connect with others in a bigger way, we close the stranger gap and allow our audiences to know, like, and trust us in a very authentic way. THIS, every.single.time., will automatically give you a leg up from your competitors! Hands down.
If you still aren’t sure where to start, I’ve built a cheat sheet of questions you can ask yourself to initiate this personal branding process. Just click on the link below and it's yours.. FOR FREE!
P.S. If you want to know more about how to quickly implement a social media strategy, grab my strategy guide here!