Business owner! Every morning when you enter your business, do you think about yourself as a brand? If your answer is no, please read on. I’ll try my best to convince you about why personal branding is crucial for your business success.
[This is the second article in a series about personal branding. Read the first one here: The Beginner's Guide To Personal Branding.]
What personal branding can do for your business
Most people are familiar with branding as the definition of creating a name, symbol or design that identifies and differentiates a product from other products. But just as a product can be well branded to stand out and to sell better, so can you. When it comes to selling, or promoting, what you are and what you can offer, a personal branding strategy comes in handy.
By developing your personal brand, you’ll be able to differentiate yourself, as well as your business from all the others in your niche. I’ll tell you why.
Let’s say you’re a self-employed accountant, or a contractor specialized in property development. What sets you apart from all of the other small business accountants or builders?
Your skill sets? Perhaps, but the other firm say they can do it too.
Your ability to deliver on time? Might be so, but I’ve heard the other guy is pretty professional as well.
Your reputation? Definitely! The sum of all the parts that can’t be duplicated.
You are the only unique selling point of your business
The truth is that very few businesses are one-of-a-kind. From a customer’s perspective, would you really claim that your business is truly unique? Be honest!
Let’s take a look at some examples of “unique selling points” without a wow factor:
- We provide customized iPhone cases. Really?! I’ve seen tens of companies doing exactly the same.
- We’re a family owned business, established in 2011. Ok, you’ve been in business for two years and think this will convince me of your stability?
- We sell a unique, organically grown coffee blend. Not according to your product bag – it says only 20 percent comes from organically grown beans.
Even if all of the USP-attempts above are yours, I don’t say your business sucks. I just say it’s not differentiated from others.
Your business may be the best business in the world, but if nothing substantial sets it apart from other businesses in the same niche, you’ll have a hard time attracting customers or potential clients.
Let’s change that!
What makes you stand out will make you successful
A well-crafted personal brand does outsmart all the strained USPs that small businesses often come up with. Building your personal brand will be what sets you apart from others, and what creates your much-needed USP in the sea of sameness.
A strong personal brand lets you become known for what you’re good at, sets you apart from everyone else, and can be the difference between landing a new client or not.
3 benefits of personal branding for small business owners
- You create human capital for your business that your competitors never can imitate or duplicate. No-one except you is you.
- You don’t have to compete with your “not so unique” services or products, nor with people holding the same job title or in the same business as you. Instead, you set yourself apart with your personal attributes and best skills.
- Your personal brand identifies you, and differentiates you from all the other professionals in your industry, while making you relevant and visible to your target market.
Want to start shaping your own personal brand? Have a look at The Beginner’s Guide To Personal Branding, or learn from the guy with one of the world’s most powerful brands, in the article Build Your Brand Like Bieber.