personal branding: don’t be afraid
When I work with clients, especially writers and bloggers, the biggest struggle they face is being comfortable with branding. I hear statements like, “I just want to write” or “I’m a person, not a brand.”
Especially for those who lean toward introversion, the idea of personal branding is terribly frightening. Last year, I attended Stephanie Bryant‘s Allume session on branding. As she explained the important of developing our personal brands, she offered this nugget of wisdom:
Your brand is a promise to your audience that you will be the same wherever they find you.
We blog and write books for an audience. And, for most us, we want to build that audience—and build relationships within our audience. Branding is a key component in building trust with our communities.
You don’t have to be afraid of branding. Here are three reasons not to let branding frighten you.
- Branding allows you to clarify your personal message. For example, my tagline on my website is “Permission to Live Well.” This reflects my desire to offer women encouragement and practical solutions for living abundant lives. Knowing my brand is geared toward this idea keeps me focused whether I’m writing, speaking, or consulting. My goal is always helping others live well.
- Branding provides focus. By establishing your personal brand, you are also making a path for saying “No” to what doesn’t fit in. Using myself as an example again, since I understand what my brand offers, I feel comfortable not accepting review opportunities or speaking engagements which will not lend themselves to my main message. Clear branding has given me confidence to say “no” to good things so I am able to say “yes” to best things.
- Branding gives you room to expand. As you build your brand, you will be free to explore new avenues for expanding the reach of your message. For example, you may begin writing for other websites where your message will be heard by new audiences. Or you may decide to write an ebook or begin speaking or creating courses for those who want to know more.
In closing, let me give you another bit of branding wisdom from my favorite creative mastermind, Stephanie Bryant:
Your brand isn’t about you! It’s about serving your client, your reader, your customer with excellence.
When we look at branding in that context, it isn’t nearly as scary. So go ahead, embrace your brand.
What fears or questions do you have about personal branding?
Here are some other insights on branding you might find useful:
- Branding vs. Building a Platform
- He Calls Me By Name: A Fresh Perspective on Personal Branding
- The Best Personal Branding Advice I Ever Got
- Do You Have the 5 Elements of a Powerful Personal Brand