The more of your own unique qualities you can build into your brand, the better off your business will be.
Entrepreneurs have always focused on building the brand names of their companies, but in today’s competitive marketplace, that’s no longer enough. Now consumers look to connect directly with business owners and hear their stories before they make a decision on whether to buy their products.
“In short, they want to know that you are personally invested in what you sell,” says Dr. R. Kay Green, CEO of RKG Marketing Solutions and author of the new book “I’ve Been Called the B* Word… Now What Do I Do?” “Nothing turns a buyer off more than the feeling that you’re only after their money. Instead they want to know who you are and what you stand for, and how those attributes influence your business.”
“There’s really only one you in this world,” adds Erica Diamond, award-winning entrepreneur and editor-in-chief of Women on the Fence, a dynamic blog that aims to teach, inspire, and unite women. “My business grew because of me. People came to me for my services because of who I was and the ideas I came up with. It’s all about the entrepreneur. You’re selling the brand of you.”
The more of your own unique qualities you can build into your brand, the better off your business will be. Effective brand development also encompasses:
* Building the right network. Include only those people who will support you and your business. Don’t waste time on naysayers or belittlers.
* Fully integrating social media into your marketing plan. Allot time each week to build your brand online through conversations with fans and followers.
* Becoming an expert. Find a niche particular to your business, and make yourself the leading authority on it. This will bring media interest through which your brand can gain exposure.
* Fully committing. Once you have your brand set, make sure all aspects of your business, from R&D to sales, are integral to it. Do not pursue ideas or leads that do not support the message of your brand.
“If you can be open and honest with yourself about your personal value, you won’t need to fudge facts on your brand,” says Dr. Green. “Focus on your passions. Determine what you’re inherently good at, what value you bring to the table, and how you can make an impact in your chosen market. Your brand, both personal and business, will follow from there.”