Something we talk a lot about at Bloguettes is branding and the importance of having a good brand. But what exactly does this mean? and what does personal branding mean?
As much as we think of brands as logos, names, colors, etc., which are all important, these are all just pieces of what makes up your visual brand. However, your brand is so much more than that…it’s the entire customer perception of your business. It’s how you make someone feel!
More now than ever we have the opportunity to create a brand around ourselves and use social media to showcase it and make it valuable.
Who Needs A “Personal Brand”?
Everyone and anyone! Whether you are a college student trying to find the right job, a mom trying to turn her hobby into a business, an influencer, or someone who has years of experience and wants to have a firm presence, you can benefit from investing in your brand.
I’s never too late to brand yourself. Allow yourself to be honest, realistic, consistent, and real with who you are and how that can be perceived by others.
Why Is Having A Personal Brand Helpful?
Whether your business or you yourself are the brand, understanding how you WANT to make people feel and how you DO make people feel lets you have an authentic direction and understanding of why you do what you do.
Someone should be able to identify YOUR brand by the tone of your voice, or maybe your humor, or topic, or even a little saying. This recognizability is so powerful and people respect consistency because it feels trustworthy. This doesn’t mean you have to do the same thing over and over, but the core intention should never change.
Additionally having a solid personal brand can bring you unexpected but amazing opportunities.
First, Ask Yourself The Right Questions
- Who do you want to be?
- What to do you want others to say about you?
- What do you stand for / are you passionate about?
- What is your tone? Are you inspirational, serious, funny, resourceful, unapologetic?
- What makes you different? What is your niche?
Why do we squirm at questions like ‘describe yourself?’ Because as much as we think it’s easy to know ourselves and put it into words, it’s not! It takes practice and it is hard answering questions about yourself.
How are people going to get to know you if you’re still getting to know yourself? Of course, that’s a lifelong journey (haha), but just understanding the basics that you want your brand to represent and the core beliefs behind it is the first step.
A great exercise that forces you to think of the overall demographic of who you are trying to reach is to draw it out. Think of your ideal readers, consumers, follower, etc… what are their interests and how do they fall in line with yours? But most importantly, how are you going to help them? If you’re a college student and just wanting to put your best foot forward, ask yourself what features you have that make you a great candidate and showcase that through social media, blogging, or other hobbies.
Know Your Objective
What is the goal of creating a personal brand? Do you want to write a book, be a style inspiration, start a podcast, get your dream job? The list of possibilities goes on and on.
There are so many motives behind having a personal brand and although most of these objectives happen later on down the line, creating a personal brand that people already connect with will make the objective so much easier and more natural.
For example, when I initially created Call Me Lore, I often shared my style, business tips, life updates, and things I learned about motherhood. As the blog has grown, I have expanded and talk about topics anywhere from how to grow back eyelashes after lash extensions, best kid-friendly restaurants in Phoenix, even to why you should use natural laundry detergent. I am known for being a mompreneur with a side passion for self-improvement.
But while my scope of content has grown, the main objective was always to be a resource. My hope is that when readers like you, think “hmmm I wonder what natural flu remedies there are” or “what are some spring dress trends,” they think “oh Lorena has probably been through that / blogged about that and I can check Call Me Lore.” That’s it. I want to be resourceful, approachable, friendly, and helpful.
List Out Your Strengths & Weaknesses
This is one that seems so simple yet we hardly ever do. I don’t know about you, but I am a terrible photographer! I can memorize a camera’s manual but styling is not my thing (even though I have learned so much through Bloguettes) HAHA. But hey, I recognize that and instead of spending so much time trying to create a photographer out of myself, I focus on my strengths like writing and researching for things that I know you guys will like.
One of the best ways to figure out your strengths is to ask other people. Ask your friends and family what they think you’re best at. Then of those things, narrow it down to the ones you really love and find a way to make a living from it.
Let’s be honest, if you aren’t going to do something well, don’t do it at all. Know what you are good at, figure out if you like it, and give it YOUR ALL. Be the absolute best you can be at the things you are already good at. Chances are you have a pretty good shot at being the best.
Last But Not Least, Create Your Brand Image
This can get tricky with a personal brand since a brand logo is not always necessary. But since social media has made images such a big part of our lives, make sure that the images you share give that same feeling you want your entire brand to give. This is why some people talk about having a fluid “Instagram grid”. Essentially, it means that your online visual social media portfolio, for lack of better words, is consistent and has the same style in each photo. You want it to be so that when all of your photos are next to one another on a grid, it flows naturally. Finding an editing style you stick to for every photo is a great way to do just that.
Brand image guidelines make it easier to decide in the moment what visuals match your brand and which don’t. A brand guideline includes your logo (if you make one), FONTS (so important), and a color palette. All of these things add to your tone of voice.
How Social Media Can Help
Social media represents an amazing opportunity (like never before) for you to be known and found. It’s free and effective when used right. BUT with over 2 billion people using social media, you have to be strategic in order to stand out. That is why knowing who you are and what you want is so important. Social media can be the vehicle to get you where you want to go.
Here are some tips:
- Know what platform your audience is on and focus your efforts there
- Post consistently
- If posting every day isn’t right for you, choose what days you will and stick to it
- Make your Instagram account a business profile
- This allows you to access analytics about your audience and every post you make
- ENGAGE with people
- Collaborate with influencers, companies, etc.
- Bring value to EVERY post, don’t post just to post
- Quality over quantity!
- Care about the details!
- Use high quality images ONLY and captions that show your personality
Stock photos from Stock That Rocks.