Do you ever find yourself unsure on how to grow your personal brand? Do you struggle with planning out your next few steps? Do you have a tendency to always second guess your decisions?
The truth is, just like everyone else, my journey towards building my personal brand wasn’t an easy path. I had to deal with the uncertainty, lack of confidence, frustration and all the overthinking before launching my brand and business successfully.
Most women in business today realise how important building an authentic brand and professional image is to growing their recognition, authority and influence in their niche.
But the truth is that very few manage to do it! Why? Because building a world-class personal brand requires a lot of your time, patience, hard work and passion.
And I’m here to save you time, resources and heartache by sharing with you some of my top brand success secrets and valuable lessons I wish I knew when I was starting out!
How To Do Branding Effectively?
Carve Out Your Niche For Your Brand And Business!
This has got to be the number one success secret that most people overlook in their attempt to build a profitable personal brand. And I nearly did too!
Because here’s the truth: We are all conditioned to care about what people think! And this is one of the most significant mindset issues most professional women struggle with when building their own brands. But you can’t please everyone! So don’t even try.
As much as I was aware of this, I didn’t realize how pivotal this would be to my own brand and business success. This piece of advice changed everything for me!
Being specific with my niche market has allowed me to focus on my target audience’s needs, gain a deep understanding of their particular business, and enrich my skills to serve them better.
I can clearly remember when I started practising image and brand consulting for professional women, many people often told me that I shouldn’t restrict my business to cater to women only. I remember being told things like,
“You will lose 50% of your market.”
“But, men need branding too!”
And this rocked me at first. I mean, these were very successful top female entrepreneurs and executives with years of experience warning me not to target a niche market!
But then I realized that to build a truly successful personal brand, I needed a deeper connection to my clients. And that the woman I wanted to serve was just like me.
Like most professional women, I have been through a lot in both life and business. I’ve struggled, faced challenges, dealt with insecurities, and at times, lost confidence, especially as I matured. I know what it’s like to have years of experience yet still feel so undervalued.
So, here’s what I did— I made a choice to follow my passion to find greater purpose. To build the foundations of my brand and business around the people I most resonated with. Not only did I decide to offer personal branding and image consulting services to only women, but I created a micro niche; targeting mature female business professionals, small business owners, and female entrepreneurs who are ready to take on the world and gain the confidence to live and lead to their full potential!
And I have never looked back!
So your brand success tips are:
- Pick a niche or even a micro niche so you will deeply connect with your audience
- You don’t have to be all things to all people! Pick a lane and own it!
- Identify your ideal customer, client or audience so you can get to know them intimately.
When you can do this, you can build a highly profitable personal brand you are both proud of and passionate about.
How To Get Over Your Perfectionism To Build Your Brand
You Don’t Have To Be Perfect!
I consider myself a bit of a perfectionist, which can be a bad thing if it holds you back from taking action. But I also believe that perfectionism can be a good thing when it comes to crafting your personal brand.
It has proved to be advantageous for me when establishing my brand. My attention to detail ensures I deliver a high-quality visual brand, content, and messaging, building greater brand recognition, credibility and cut through.
On the other hand, there are also days when my perfectionism gets the best of me.
As a former model, I’ve been conditioned to think that my image and brand always has to be perfect, otherwise I would see myself as a failure.
This in turn, has also made me cautious of showing my imperfections for fear that I may lose my credibility to my audience.
Perhaps it’s because of my age, or maybe it’s because as my brand has grown so has my confidence, but I’m here to tell you that it’s okay not to be perfect all the time!
Being open about your flaws, insecurities, and struggles makes you even more authentic, which can also be an opportunity for your brand to shine through!
You don’t have to be perfect, and in fact, it’s better not to be.
Nowadays, people are looking for people, brands and businesses they can relate to and identify with. Being imperfect is the new perfect!
By letting your audience see your raw and authentic side, the more you become relatable and real to them. And who knows? They may love you for it!
You can also check out my blog on how you can make people love your image and brand HERE
I remember when I first started, I felt like I needed to be perfect. It is something that I have struggled with for most of my career! But looking back now, I realized that I am enough with all my imperfections.
So your brand success tips are:
- You don’t have to be perfect in all aspects of your personal brand
- Don’t hold yourself back from sharing your failures as well as your triumphs.
- It’s okay to be vulnerable. It all adds depth and dimension to your brand, who you are and what you stand for.
How To Get People To Connect With Your Brand
Speak From Your Heart
When I first started, I wondered, what do I have to say to help my audience? What do they want to hear from me? How can I best help them?
I also thought I needed to sound a certain way, talk a certain way, and say certain things that I thought my audience would want to hear.
I was writing and publishing blogs and content madly. But I soon realized I was struggling to make a connection!
At first, I couldn’t understand why. Then I realized the problem. I was trying way too hard to impress my audience! I got so caught up in wanting to sound super credible and professional that I lost sight of the essence of my brand identity; which is my personality, passion and purpose!
I started to feel disillusioned. Then one day, I decided to write from the heart simply.
And, suddenly, everything clicked!
The moment I started to publish content I cared about in a way that I felt most passionate, something magical happened. I finally permitted myself to be the best I can be!
I became comfortable and confident, and it became so easy for me to write more freely and openly. And I learned over time to let go of any preconceived ideas and fears to step into my voice as a more empowered female leader.
So your next brand success tip is:
- Speaking your truth to craft a unique and authentic brand voice is one of the most valuable brand success lessons for every woman in business today. It’s also the one that so many professional women struggle with!
What Does It Take To Build A Brand?
Your Brand Is Not A Set And Forget Thing
Nowadays, most top female executives and women in business think their professional profile and personal brand is complete once you launch it, or post your profile on Linkedin and other relevant websites.
I have realized in my many years in image and style consulting that your brand is continually evolving. You can’t leave your personal brand to gather digital dust!
Your brand is multifaceted and has many levels. Just as you learn, grow and evolve, so does your personal brand.
I learned this early in my career, after years of being a professional athlete, I had paid little attention to growing my public profile or personal brand.
As such, when I wanted to swap the springboard for a professional career in marketing, people still ‘knew’ me as a top athlete and nothing else.
Like so many other sporting identities who retire from sport, I had to spend a long time reinventing my brand and updating my professional profile to be known for who I am today and not just for who I once was!
Instead of taking control of my brand presence and reputation throughout the years, I had let other people brand me!
Many female leaders today find themselves in a similar dilemma.
They have years of experience and expertise in their niche market or industry but have spent little time developing their personal brands. And this is why they continuously feel overlooked or undervalued.
So your brand success tips are:
- For your personal brand to remain relevant and connected to who you are and what you stand for, you must tap into your greatness regularly, and make sure to constantly update your personal image and public profile.
- Always consider ways to refresh and optimize your professional profile to add more layers to your brand, develop your leadership, amplify your brand value and accelerate your growth as a female leader!
Now that I let you in on my best-kept secrets, it’s time for you to achieve greatness!
Are you ready to take your personal brand to new heights and achieve your goals?
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To your success,