In a world where anyone with access to the internet and social media can build a platform, the competition for audience attention has never been tougher. For entrepreneurs looking to stand out from the crowd, a personal brand is key.Your personal brand begins at the intersection of your existing skills, passions, values, and beliefs. Click To Tweet
Gathered from our complete guide to personal branding, these 7 actionable steps will help you build a compelling personal brand to attract your perfect clients.
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1. Build Your Foundation
Not sure where to start? The first rule of crafting your personal brand is authenticity.
Branding is not about positioning yourself as something you are not, but about strategically showcasing your authentic self to your audience. Your personal brand begins at the intersection of your existing skills, passions, values, and beliefs.
- Your skills & credentials
- Your passions & interests
- Your core values & beliefs
Once you’ve discovered this intersection, ask yourself four key questions:
- Your brand vision. If you became the world’s go-to expert on topic XYZ, what would that be?
- Your brand mission. Who do you want to influence, and what do you want to accomplish?
- Your brand message. What key message do you want to reinforce throughout your marketing?
- Your brand personality. Are you polished and professional, or quirky and adventurous?
“A great brand starts with understanding who you are, what you stand for, understanding your marketplace, and understanding your positioning. What is the perception that you need to create in order to appeal to the target audience that you’re trying to appeal to?” – Re Perez, CEO and Founder of Branding For The People
2. Choose Your Target Audience
One of the biggest mistakes you can make as you build a personal brand is trying to appeal to everyone. In reality, not everyone is your ideal client.
Identify a specific target audience and build a brand that is attractive to them. You don’t need to reach everyone to build a successful business. You just need to reach your perfect clients.
“To have a strong personal brand, you have to stand for something, believe in a certain way of doing things, and proudly communicate those beliefs from your platform. Brands who don’t achieve this get lukewarm audience response and wonder why their audiences aren’t called to action by their efforts.” – Amanda Bond, The Ad Strategist
Create a client profile to help you understand more about your perfect client, their desires, and their challenges – so you can be better prepared to create the products and services they truly need.
Consider these key points to develop your perfect client profile:
- Demographics: consider their age, gender, education, relationship status, income, and profession
- Desires and aspirations: what are their dreams, goals, and aspirations?
- Pain points and challenges: what is preventing them from achieving their goals?
3. Create An Irresistible Offer
Many entrepreneurs make the mistake of creating a product or service they want, only to discover that no one else is willing to pay for it.
To build a profitable brand, you need an irresistible offer that helps your audience solve a specific problem.
A generic offer or vague promise is not irresistible. To come up with an irresistible offer, find the overlap between what you love, what you do best, and what your ideal clients want most.
What you love to do + What you do best + What your audience wants most = Your Irresistible Offer
Once you’ve got your irresistible offer, tell your audience what you do (your value proposition) and how you do it (your product). Keep it simple – your brand value should fit in one sentence!
4. Optimize Your Personal Website
First impressions are critical. When your target audience visits your personal website, they should be able to immediately understand who you are and how you can help them.
Your website is a platform that you own and control – and visiting your site is the first step your target audience takes towards becoming your client.
To convert casual visitors into paying clients, make sure these key elements are on your website:
- A professional logo
- Your value proposition
- Professional photography
- Social proof, ie. media or testimonials
- A clear call-to-action
- Your story, ie. an About page
- Your products and services
- Content or free resources, ie. blog, podcast, downloadables, etc
- Your contact details
Having a strong presence on social media is important too, but you can’t own or control the social platforms you use. You have total control over your website – make sure you leverage it for a great first impression.
5. Have A Content Strategy
Creating free content is one of the most effective ways to build your brand and earn the trust of your target audience.
Instead of trying to convince your audience you can help them, create content that actually helps them.
Use keyword research to create a list of potential topics that would be helpful for your target audience. Then decide which content to create and where you will publish it – Slideshare, Quora, email, your own website, a guest publication, or any social media platform!
- Online Courses
- PDF Guides
- Case Studies
For your content marketing strategy to work, focus on quality and consistency – only publish content that reflects the quality of your brand, and establish a publishing schedule you can stick to. Content marketing is a long-term play, but it pays incredible dividends when done correctly.
6. Have A Visibility Strategy
Looking for a shortcut to building your own audience? Try getting exposure to other people’s audiences.
Here’s some key ways to increase your visibility:
- Interviews & PR: get interviewed on podcasts, virtual summits, TV, radio, or print media
- Guest blogging: write articles for other blogs and online publications
- Public speaking: apply to speak at live events, locals meet-ups, and conferences
- Partnerships & joint ventures: build mutually beneficial relationships with other people and companies
A strong visibility strategy is key to building authority and credibility in your niche.
7. Build A Community
Become a leader in your niche by building a community for your target audience to interact with each other, share ideas, support each other, and reach out to you directly.
Here’s a few ways to build a community around your brand:
- Create a private Facebook group for your audience to engage with each other
- Host Live Events so your audience can spend time with you in person
- Create a Membership Site giving your audience access to exclusive content for a nominal fee
“A strong personal brand is one that has a high level of impact, which then leads to influence amongst the people who follow you. The key is to leverage social media and other social platforms and environments to create relevant and meaningful dialogues between you and the people you want to impact.” – Mark Lack, CEO, Shorten The Gap
There’s never been a better time to be an entrepreneur. With Thinkific, anyone can build a brand online and sell products to their audience. When you build a personal brand, you immediately differentiate yourself from your competitors because as an individual you are 100% unique.