Now I know you were thinking the other "B" word, but that's not what I'm referring to. The "B" word that I'm speaking on that is possibly killing your business is...
Yep! I'm going to say it. Branding is killing your business. Why? Because most entrepreneurs don't truly know what branding is or its impact and lack thereof on their businesses. Not to mention it's become watered down as an "IT" phrase for the last couple of years especially. People have been caught up in a whirlwind that has led you to believe that branding is the whimsy of an awesome logo with super cool colors and fonts.
And while I love all that as much as the next person (I'm a self-diagnosed font junkie); IT'S NOT ENOUGH! Nope! And in my opinion it isn't even where you should start. Creating a brand for an entrepreneur is about three things:
1. KNOW THYSELF!
As an entrepreneur you must first know yourself. Know that being EXACTLY who you are is NOT wrong. Being strong enough to stand in the essence of who you are the good, bad, and even on ugly hair days, ladies is what being authentic is all about. No one has ever always done EVERYTHING right, definitely not me.
So OWN IT! BE IT! SHOW IT! More than likely it's the mistakes and trials that made you start your business in the first place. So I encourage you to make a list of the things that bring you absolute joy and those things that drain you. It's a must that you know this when building your brand. I'll show you why in a minute.
2. KNOW WHO YOU'RE HERE TO SERVE!
Yes I know you're in business to make money, how do I know? Because that's what we're all in business to do whether we admit it or not. And personally I'm in business to make money and lots of it if I can help it! I'm just saying! However, Zig Ziglar said it best, "You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help enough other people get what they want." This speaks to being of service to others.
You must operate from a place of service. It's from that place that you'll get clear on who your gift is for. Then you have to know what they WANT from you, not just their NEED. What are they struggling with? What are their desires? Then find active online and in-person communities that you can be a part of and begin to serve them. This will help you to display not only your expertise, but also the personality of your brand. It's also an excellent way to gather data on your brand's audience.
3. CONNECT THE TWO!
Begin to tell your story, and tell it often! Not just a random story, but the story of the journey that led you to do what you do. Did you overcome a trauma or adversity, did you want to change generational poverty issues, did you always have a love for fashion and want to share that love with the world? Whatever your journey, whatever your story it's yours and you need to share it truthfully and powerfully without seeking validation or permission.
Sharing this story with the world shows that you have the courage to be authentic and transparent. These are the things that people connect to. Think about your own last purchase. I don't care if you made a major purchase like a house or car or something as minimal as picking up your favorite soda. Think about what made you go with the brand that you chose? I'd be willing to bet you that you bought it because you connected to the story they shared via social media or commercials. It made you say "Dang, I'm having that very same problem and this is what I've been looking for." Or "That sounds great, I want to experience that too!" Telling your story will invoke the same response from your audience and turn them from potential clients to buying clients and then to the ultimate goal of RAGING FANS!!
So stop letting the "B" word kill your business. Equip yourself with the tools needed to build a powerful brand that will impact the world. Consider investing in Expert Coach to guide you through the process. Create your business that completely embraces the true meaning of branding. What is that you ask? Well here's my definition of it....
"Branding is the art of creating an identity for your business that your clients/customers fall in love with and emotionally connect with as they would their best-friend. It fosters irreplaceable loyalty allowing the brand to collect cash and create change for global impact!"
So are you making your audience your best-friend? No? Well hop to it! You've got work to do!