Guest article provided by: mill.agency
Your personal brand reflects who you are, your values, and your purpose. Chances are you have already developed some form of a personal brand – even if it happened organically! Your logo, email signature, and business cards are just a few components of your personal brand. These items identify your company through colors, verbiage, and imagery that is unique to your company.
Likewise, your sales results, networking skills, and interpersonal communication style are also characteristics of your personal brand. It’s how you speak, how you dress and how you act in public. Your branding influences the market’s awareness and perception of your company, which is why it is incredibly important to craft a personalized brand. When establishing your brand there should be careful thought into how you want to be perceived by your target audience, and then use that to drive your messaging that will be used throughout your branding. Essentially, branding is the foundation for your company reputation, and it is crucial that you take the time to carefully craft your brand in order to see optimal results.
We have broken down the best practices for creating a personalized brand that stands out to help get you started on your branding process and here is another great article on 5 Steps to Building Your Personal Brand.
Create a Brand Roadmap
The key to developing a solid personal brand is consistency, and the best place to start is by creating a brand roadmap which summarizes and presents your branding process goals. A brand roadmap is a great way to organize your thoughts before creating a marketing plan. The brand roadmap pulls together your “why” and “how” of your business and helps you lay it all out in a way which you can then brainstorm all possible strategies. Once you have developed your brand roadmap the next step is to begin defining what makes your brand different.
Develop a Unique Selling Proposition
Once you establish your personal brand roadmap, it is then time to begin crafting your unique selling proposition, which is essentially how and why you are an industry leader. It is important to take time and analyze your brand in order to identify what it is that you do best. Conducting some primary market research by asking former and existing customers about their experiences with you through surveys and outreach is a great place to start to see what stands out to your customers.
Also, researching your competitors to find out how they position themselves is a great way to ensure that you are unique in your branding. What aspect of your personal style sets you apart? Why should customers choose you over the competition? What do you bring to the table in your industry? What are you known for?
Then, use your collected data to develop a unique selling proposition (USP) – a persuasive message that communicates how your products or services stand apart from those of your competitors. Once you have your unique selling proposition formed, you can then begin to focus on how you are going to communicate your brand.
Deliver Your Message
Delivering your message to your target audience takes time and commitment, and delivering your message successfully requires a strong personal brand. There are many ways to get your message out to the world including email, advertising, published articles and social media.
In the current market, social media is an increasingly more popular tool that companies use to reach more accurate audiences on a wider, more immediate scale. Social media marketing is also becoming increasingly more popular when it comes to branding because many platforms have built in analytics tools that allow you to see how successful your social media efforts are in real time.
Regardless of how you choose to deliver your message, the goal is for people to recognize you and your brand and to have a positive association based on what they are presented with.
Get Your Brand Recognized
Brand recognition is the ultimate goal when developing your personal branding, because it is essentially what drives company sales and growth. To start developing brand recognition, be sure that both your logo and unique selling proposition (USP) are included on all client-facing documents and forums – including your website, stationery, web directories, marketing materials, and social media accounts.
In the case of branding without a visual aspect (radio, voicemail, etc.) make sure your website and USP are included every single time. Repetition creates memory, the more someone hears your brand information the more likely they are to retain it and recognize you later. The use of clear and consistent taglines are incredibly valuable when it comes to non-visual branding, and a successful one should resonate with your audience.
Once your messaging is clear and you make the market aware of your brand, you should then fine tune all of the close details of your brand in order to let your most authentic brand personality shine through.
Let Your Brand Personality Shine
Personal branding goes beyond the written, verbal, and visual components of you or your company. Are you known to be fun and easy going? Are you a straight shooter with an affinity for perfection? Or, are you somewhere in between the two? Your brand personality sets the tone for how the market perceives you, and is an important part of your identity and it should be cohesive with all of your other branding aspects – including messaging, visuals, and taglines. Every meeting and interaction you have with prospective and existing customers, colleagues, and vendors is part of the brand and reputation which is unique to you. How you conduct yourself when prospecting or networking should be in line with your personal brand or that of the company.
Remember that you are your business. When carefully planned and developed, your personal brand will amplify your strengths and begin to work for you – creating opportunities, attracting customers, and closing sales. It is more important now than ever to create a solid personal brand in order to stay ahead of the curve and avoid getting lost in the media storm that is the internet. With new companies being born every day, and a transient and extremely digital world, it is easy to get lost in the shuffle. Make sure to know what you do best and promote that genuinely and authentically!
If you are unsure where to begin with your brand strategy, contacting an experienced branding firm can help you begin the framework for your branding process. Regardless of your starting point, all brands can benefit from a strong, personalized brand.
About Millennium Agency
Millennium Agency is a national, award-winning boutique branding, messaging and strategy marketing firm for the software technology and manufacturing sectors. A top-led women-owned business, we take your brand and vision seriously and build a strategy that helps drive brand success. Our expert team unites creative branding, storytelling and data analytics to accelerate your business growth. With offices in Boston and New Hampshire, and a worldwide presence, the professionals at Millennium Agency would like to learn more about your business.