Your personal brand is an image of your true self. You are here to do something, to create something, to help others. But why does that matter on a business level?
I came from the hospitality industry where branding was everything! Not only did that brand set one hotel apart from the others, but consistency of brand kept customers engaged and coming back. It is what made those customer recommend us. It is what made us the only option they thought of when it was time to travel.
When I ventured out to start my own company I knew my brand had to be equally as impressive. I agonized for weeks coming up with the ideal name. I had three vendors working on my logo before I found one I liked, and my website had to be perfect. All of that time, effort, and money spent creating my company brand. Guess how much money those aspects made me? ZERO!
As I was creating what I thought was my all encompassing brand I was also unintentionally creating my personal brand. I was interacting with people. I was speaking at events, and I was sharing messages with corporations and individuals. I was connecting, and defining who I was in their eyes. To this day, my personal brand has grown my business far more than any corporate branding I built.
Here is why your personal brand is as important as your corporate brand when developing your business strategy—whether you’re an entrepreneur or part of a larger organization.
People want to work with people!
In my experience people want to speak with another person, and do not want to feel like just a number. They want to feel important, and not get lost in the sea of other clients.
Showing yourself as a person is a win! Having photos of yourself on your website, or responding to emails, and picking up the phone- this all adds up to your brand. Be open about who you are, what you stand for, and communicate this with your clients.
Big brands use personality in their advertising, and so should you! You do not need a big name celebrity to represent yourself. You are the celebrity! Be yourself, but true to who you are and the messages you send. Do not try to be everything to everyone- just be yourself! Not every client will respond favorably to you, but that is okay. You can not be all things to all people. Take the time to connect and relate in a way that you know is authentic, and the right clients WILL RESPOND.