These days, having a brand is as big a necessity for a business as having a website or a presence on social media. And by “brand” we don’t mean a logo.
Think about any business you love, and chances are great that one (or many) of the reasons you’re drawn to them has something to do with their branding. It might be their message, their style, or their customer promotions, but whatever it is, there’s something about them—something more than just the product or service—that keeps you coming back.
With branding like that, it’s easy to assume there’s a team of people on staff whose full-time job it is to create a unique brand experience for their customers. And more than likely, you’re right!
But as a solopreneur, you’re a one-man or one-woman band. You’re the customer acquisition department, the fulfillment center, technical troubleshooter, legal team, marketing firm, and payroll, all wrapped into one!
With all the hats you wear, it can be easy to think that because your business is “just you,” there’s little need to have a brand.
Au contraire, mon frere….
First of all, “just you” is a BIG DEAL. Running a business on your own is not for the faint of heart—it’s gutsy and bold work, whether you’re making your own art, offering coaching services, selling specialty candles, or anything in between. You’re putting your heart and soul into your business and you deserve to stand out.
Second of all, a personal brand is probably the greatest way to differentiate yourself among the sea of others in your industry. If you’re wondering whether or not you need a brand, guess who else is, too? Nearly every other solopreneur in your industry! So, take the time to create a brand for yourself and your business that shows why you’re different—it will help to make you memorable and stand out from the pack.Take the time to create a brand for yourself and your business that shows why you’re different—it will help to make you memorable and stand out from the pack. Find out how: Click To Tweet
Now, I know what you’re thinking: “How am I going to find time to create my brand?”
The answer? Strategically, consistently and thoughtfully. 😊
Here are a few tips to help:
- Carve out time to work on your brand that’s separate from the day-to-day work of your business.
Working in your business and working on your business often require different parts of your brain, so it’s helpful to keep their respective tasks separate. Schedule a day of the week, or even a few hours on a specific day, to focus on developing your brand. It’ll give you time to let your ideas flow without constantly having to stop to answer a client email or finish up a project.
- Go deep, not wide.
When you begin brainstorming your personal brand, you’ll naturally be led to explore the core aspects of your business—and yourself. Up until this point in your business, you may have been spreading yourself too thin or saying yes to projects or clients that weren’t the right fit. Developing a brand helps you avoid that in the future. You’re forced to go deep and get laser-focused about what you do best, what you enjoy doing, and where you add the most value for your clients. Enjoy the journey inward—it’ll help you build a brand and a business that you love.
- Take it piece by piece.
Developing a brand encompasses a lot, from messaging to images to marketing tools and social media. Don’t stress about everything at once. Take one piece at a time and be thoughtful and thorough, then move on to the next. You’ll be surprised how not overloading yourself can actually make you more productive—and allow the pieces to come together more quickly.
Following these steps will set you on the path to building a personal brand that resonates with your audience and sets you apart.
Here’s the thing: it doesn’t matter what size business you have. Even as a “business of one,” you have just as much right—and just as much potential—to shine out from the crowd like the unique person that you are.
Come to think of it, didn’t every “big” business start out as a business of one?