If you’re here reading this, I have some assumptions about you. Can I tell you what they are?
- You’re a product- or service-based business owner.
- You’re frustrated because you’re not making the sales that you want or need to be making.
- You feel like you maybe chose the wrong industry, whatever your industry may be. You love what you do, but you fear that the industry is oversaturated and that there’s no way for you to stand out among the masses.
- You understand that if you had a loyal and dedicated audience, whether it consists of 10 or 10,000 people, you would be able to meet your sales and income goals.
Am I right, or am I right?
It can be SO frustrating trying to stand out among the crowds of people who seem to be doing the exact same things that you are doing. And, I mean, how many people actually need what you’re offering, whether it be coaching or graphic design or vinyl shirts or tiny knitted mittens for kittens? (I didn’t mean for that to rhyme, but I’m SO glad that it did!)
Here’s what you need to understand- people need what you have to offer. Whatever it is, however niched it may seem, I have no doubt in my mind that someone out there is in need of what you do.
So why aren’t you making sales?
(I’m sure you can already guess, based on the title and opening of this post!)
You. Aren’t. Standing. Out.
That’s it- you’re just not standing out in your industry!
And now I can hear the objections- Well, of course I’m not standing out. Everyone and their mother is doing the same thing that I’m doing. There are a million different people who have the same skills as me, so why would someone choose me?
And now I want you to hear the solution- personal branding.
Personal branding is the one thing that can make you stand out from the sea of competitors you are up against.
Personal branding is what can make people choose you over Jane Doe next door, even if she has years more experience or her prices are a fraction of yours.
Personal branding is what will make your clients return to you again and again!
So- what’s personal branding?
I’m so glad you asked!
Personal branding is the YOU that’s injected into your business. It’s your quirks, your personality, the things about your personal life that you choose to share with your audience. Your personal branding is what makes people relate to you. It’s shared experiences, hobbies, pet peeves, favorite coffee shops.
YOU are your own personal branding.
Personal branding is you sharing a picture of your cat laying across your desk when you’re trying to work, because your audience knows that you’re obsessed with your cat and that she seems to only want to spend time with you when you’re very, very busy.
Personal branding is you sharing in a Story that you found a new flavor of lip balm that you love, because your audience knows that you are irrationally obsessed with lip balm and they love how much you love it.
Personal branding is you showing up to tell a story about something that happened to you when you were at Target and then relating it back to your business or your brand.
YOU are your own personal branding.
Because here’s the thing- Jane doe next door probably doesn’t have a cat with a personality like yours. Jane Doe probably isn’t obsessed with lip balm. Jane Doe probably didn’t have the same experience at Target and can’t relate it back to her business in the way that you can.
YOU are your own personal branding. (Yes, I already said it… but it deserves to be said again and again!)
Personal branding is like your own secret sauce. It’s the little something extra that your audience absolutely loves.
For example, let’s look at me (Rebecca) and my own personal branding.
My business is hand lettering and graphic design.
My brand is hand lettering and graphic design, cats, coffee, my daughter, Disney parks.
My audience knows that I am a hand lettering and graphic artist, yes. But, they also know about my cats. They know that Leia has RBF but secretly likes to cuddle with me at night, and that Tuna is a silly snuggle bug who likes to eat plastic bags. They know that I looooooove me some iced coffee. My audience knows that my daughter is the sunshine of my life, that her name is Kate, and that she likes to eat vegetables and toast. They know that I’m obsessed with all things Disney and that I took a solo trip to Disney World by myself back in 2019.
All of those things by themself don’t make me unique, but all of them together make me, ME. They make my brand personal.
I know that I have followers who are just following me for my hand lettering and artistry.
I have people who follow me because of my cats.
I have people who follow me because they want to hear about how Kate is doing.
I have people who follow me strictly for my Disney pictures.
And then, I have people who follow me for all of those things- for the unique concoction of items that make up my brand. People who follow my account because of ME.
So, how do you develop your own personal brand?
My recommendations- choose around 5 topics to center your brand around. They can relate back to your business or be completely different. Personally, I recommend a blend of both business and personal.
Then, rotate through those topics as you post. You can do this only on social media, or you can create more content (like blog posts, videos, podcasts, etc.) around it. If you look on my own Instagram, for example, you’ll see that I often post hand lettering projects of Disney quotes, or that I’ll take something that Kate has done and relate it back to my business, or I’ll mention that I like to work in coffee shops instead of at home (pre-Covid, at least).
I also recommend choosing a style of communication that’s consistent with your own natural style of communication. If you’re very personable and informal, write your copy in that style. If you’re very formal and academic, write your copy in that style. If you tend sprinkle f-bombs like candy in your day-to-day conversation and you want that to be part of your brand, write your copy in that style. If you like corny puns, add them into your writing.
In my own brand, I would want someone to be able to look at my content and know that I’m the one who produced it without actually knowing for sure that I am the one who produced it- does that make sense? I want BECCA to shine through everything that I do, because I am weird and awkward and obsessed with my daughter and my cats and Disney World and I love my husband and I want ALL of that to be apparent because those are the things that make me (and therefore my personal brand) unique… and I want the same for you and your brand!
I hope that you found this post helpful as we all navigate the new experience of being business owners! If you begin implementing my tips, I’d LOVE to be able to stop by your social media profiles and cheer you on, so tag me @rebeccafletcherdesigns or shoot me a DM!
PS- If you are struggling with the branding side of your business, check out my DIY Branding Kit! It has everything you need to jump-start branding your business- logo templates, color palettes, font pairings, social media templates, and more!