One question that many business owners still ask in 2019 is how to build a personal brand. It can be quite frustrating when you are just starting out, with no audience, following, or sign of engagement. With these actionable steps below, you will be able to build a personal brand that reflects your business values and creates a strong connection between you and your customers.
Don’t Spread Yourself Too Thin
There are various channels for doing business and each suit different purposes and are fit for different personality types. As a business owner who is perhaps just starting out and may be faced with the dilemma of choosing from all the platforms available for digital marketing, try not to fall into the trap of dabbling into many channels all at once. Instead, find atleast one or two channels that suit you based on your strengths or financial standing and stick with it until you see growth.
A person who is good at talking and expressing views on camera but bad at conveying words in writing, for example, should embrace a platform like Youtube and not try to struggle with creating blog posts. With so many digital platforms available for doing business, it is best to stick with one platform and grow it till you see success.
Don’t Be A Generalist
One of the qualities that define a good brand is its ability to educate its audience. People want to patronise brands that offer value and do not just exemplify the “snake oil salesman” persona. A great way to become that kind of brand is to niche down. Find that niche that you are good at and you would want people to know you for and carve it out for yourself.
You can find your niche by taking out time to search within your self and identifying those things that you are good at and tend to gravitate towards. When you are in your niche, you increase the chances of becoming an authority in your field and a brand which is an authority in its field is a successful one.
Network In Your Niche
As mentioned earlier, one of the ways to make people listen is to educate them but education only suffices to an extent; you also need to need to activate conversations. Search for people who have been successful in your niche, reach out to them, and aim to build relationships with them by adding value to them, sharing their content, interacting with their communities and communicating gestures to them that imply that you care about their brand without expecting anything in return.
Facebook groups are another great platform to position yourself as an expert in your niche. You can engage in active Facebook groups by providing relevant answers to questions from participants in a non-spammy way. For instance, if someone asked a question about the best restaurants in Lagos and you happened to have a food Youtube channel with a video on that topic, you could share this video with the person.
Take advantage of the social media platforms to reach out to those you admire in your industry and aim to provide value to their communities. In this way, you would be gaining recognition for your brand and succeeding in becoming an authority in your industry.
Put Yourself Out There
Collaborations, volunteering and selling yourself are all a part of the journey to becoming a successful brand. Again, the key principle to bear in mind is how you can offer value. Find brands you would want to volunteer for or collaborate with and pitch yourself to them. If you are a blogger looking to gain traction for your blog, for example, you could offer to contribute guest posts to another blog you find interesting and engaging.
The best way to find people or brands you can work with is by actively networking in your niche and this is why you have to be proactive. The more you collaborate with brands, the more you build your professional experience and the more your experience, the more influence you will have for your brand.
One thing to bear in mind, however, is to set realistic standards when identifying who you would like to collaborate with. Don’t aim too high; start by collaborating with people that have the same kind of influence or have a similar audience size to you and you will begin to grow from there.