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Branding Yourself for Your Business

Have you ever noticed that there was a switch years ago in what people looked for in a brand? They look for similarities to them. This is a great thing for entrepreneurs because it means there is more room for like-minded products.

For example, let's say that you make handmade blankets. There are lots of handmade blankets out there but the way yours stand apart from the rest is all about who you are, your story, and why you make the blankets. Maybe it all started as a charity thing, maybe you made one for a friend and she loved it and asked to pay you to make another as a gift, maybe you just had an itch or desire to create something beautiful. Whatever the reason, it's your story, and your story is part of your branding.

Another part of your branding is a key element that a lot of us "skip over" when we're selling online. The dreaded self-portrait. Whether it's a photo of ourselves used as our profile photos or in our about section on our website, we often put this off – mostly because we aren't excited about listening to that little voice in our head tell us we're not pretty enough or that our hair looks a mess or our makeup was atrocious. Who wants to go there? I get it.

Because people are looking at the story of a company or business to influence their decisions it's now vital that you show up somewhere in your biz and sort of on a regular basis. This doesn't mean you have to go selfie crazy, but it does mean there should for sure be at least one image of you on your website - under the about page or similar. And there should be photos of you occasionally on your social media. You can be wearing your own product, just smiling and showing off your fun vacation, whatever you feel comfortable sharing with your fans. Your potential customers want to connect with you, relate to you, and fall in love with your story – that is when you have built in a fan base that will follow you down any new path, into any new product, etc.

I challenge all of you to start thinking about the persona you'd like to represent in your business. Do you want to appear professional and serious? Do you want to appear soft and approachable? Maybe something in between? Do you want to be seen as wild and fun? Whatever you want to express, now start thinking about how that could come across.

If you're desire is to look professional, maybe it's a nice suit that you have or slacks and blouse. If it's wild and fun you're after, what are some of your more outrageous clothes that you have tucked away? Put together outfits you want to be seen in. Remember them when you'll be somewhere that you want to have a photo taken.

The key - in my opinion - is to be yourself. It's the easiest thing to be and it will draw like-minded customers, leaving you feeling full and satisfied after each transaction.

Questions? Leave them in the comments.

I'd love to hear how/if this helps you with your self branding in the future!

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Illustration by Blume Bauer ©

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