As an entrepreneur, personal branding is an invaluable practice. A strong personal brand offers entrepreneurs a host of benefits, including differentiation in your respective field or market, the opportunity to build trust with customers and partners, and a network effect that can yield unforeseen growth opportunities as your reach and influence grows..
However, building a strong personal brand is no easy task. Successful entrepreneurs like Gary Vaynercuk and Elon Musk have dedicated significant amounts of time and resources to crafting their portrayal in the public sphere dating back to before they were household names. The reason entrepreneurs dedicate precious time to their personal brands comes down to the aforementioned benefits of personal branding, and the boost they can offer for someone building a business.
To discover how you can start seeing ROI from your own personal brand, follow the personal branding tips for entrepreneurs below.
Personal Branding Tips for Entrepreneurs
Before you can start building your personal brand, you need to define what your personal branding goals are and the means with which you will accomplish them. This means identifying your niche target audience, the key messages you want to deliver to that audience, and the marketing channels you will use to deliver those key messages.
Using a personal brand framework can help you in this process, ensuring you are intentional about it and have a sound strategy as you seek to build your personal brand. The basic components of a personal brand framework are:
Want more inspiration as you consider your strategy? Read these personal brand goals examples.
Your personal brand should be personal. That means ensuring it is grounded in the story you tell about yourself as an entrepreneur and your business. Faking this will not only make your personal brand come across as inauthentic, but you also are likely to struggle with consistency. Being yourself feels good. Pretending to be someone else takes work, and decreases your chances of staying consistent and building a strong brand.
Telling your story openly means sharing your experiences, your challenges, and your successes with your audience. By doing so, you can connect with your audience on a deeper level and build trust and credibility.
Speaking of consistency, to build a strong personal brand, you need to be consistent in everything you do. This means using the same language, tone, and visual elements across all of your marketing channels, from your personal brand website to social media channels like LinkedIn and Twitter to your email and offline communications.
One of the elements that makes Vaynerchuk’s brand so strong is that regardless of which channel you see him on, his visual branding and messaging are always the same. This makes his channels immediately recognizable to fans. Strive for this same effect in your own personal branding.
Get more personal branding tips in this blog post: 7 Personal Branding Tips to Help Grow Your Audience and Influence
An integral part of making your story a part of your personal brand is being transparent. By being transparent, you demonstrate to your audience that you are open, honest and relatable. This includes not only sharing successes and advice, but also sharing failures and asking questions. Not only will you come across as relatable, but you will also boost your credibility.
This is one of the reasons the “building in public” trend has taken off on social media platforms like Twitter for entrepreneurs. Building in public is the idea that company founders, entrepreneurs, and professionals working on their own projects and side businesses document their process publicly. Twitter is a channel where this trend has taken off, with people posting regular updates for their followers on their endeavors—both positive updates, as well as challenges.
An example of this strategy being applied on Twitter went viral when Yehong Zhu, founder of Zette, posted a Twitter thread that offered a behind the scenes look at what her day is usually like as a startup founder in Silicon Valley. This content idea was well received, as her peers were able to relate, and other members of her audience were able to learn about what it’s like having that job role.
If you have an introverted personality, being transparent in your story telling and sharing content with large public audiences may be an intimidating prospect. Follow these personal branding tips for introverts for guidance on easing into your personal branding journey.
Learn more about building a personal brand on Twitter with this blog post: 10 Content Ideas For Building Your Personal Brand On Twitter
Your personal brand is the culmination of multiple touch points that your audience has with you—your personal website, your social media accounts, public appearances at events, public presentations, and any other in-person or digital channel where someone might engage with you all influence your personal brand.
Taking care in the development of these channels is important for entrepreneurs in order to maximize the benefit each one can yield. For example, a consistent presence on social media can lead to a large, engaged following that yields revenue and valuable brand exposure for your business. A personal website can be a great homebase for gathering links to all of your personal brand channels, acting as a digital resume or calling card.
Taking the time to ensure the messaging, visual branding, and other elements are consistent and high quality across these touch points is a key consideration for a strong personal brand.
Read “Personal Branding Tips: 5 Things Every Professional Should Have to Build Their Brand” for a checklist of assets entrepreneurs should have for personal branding
A mistake marketers and professionals focused on personal brand growth sometimes make is focusing so much on what they are publishing that they forget their original goal to build an engaged audience. Once you have your personal brand channels up and running and full of your beautiful content and messaging, you want to use them to generate two way conversation.
This means responding to comments on your own content, as well as looking engaging with content from people in your network. Try setting a cadence and quota for yourself in terms of engagement. For example, if you are working on building your personal brand on Twitter, make it your goal to comment on two Tweets per day. Or if Instagram is your personal brand channel of choice, comment on two photos per day from other users.
Showing appreciation for other people’s content and engaging in thoughtful discussion with peers in your industry will not only help with networking, but it will also expose your profile to more users—two benefits that will help to grow your personal brand.
For more opportunities to grow your personal brand, check out the best social media platforms for entrepreneurs.
Personal branding is a powerful strategy that entrepreneurs can utilize for supporting their businesses and their own personal growth. for entrepreneurs looking to establish themselves in the market and grow their business. By following these tips, you can build a strong personal brand that will help you differentiate yourself from the competition, attract the right customers and partners, and achieve your business goals.
Learn why a personal brand is an invaluable career asset for an employee.
Personal branding for finance and accounting professionals has a host of benefits. Read this blog for tips and examples to follow to develop your personal brand.