In the past decade, we have seen an entirely new form of micro marketing known as personal branding emerge. While brand building has been a proven and effective technique among businesses since the 1950’s, now anyone can design and implement their own personal ‘brand’ cheaply and easily to create an identity that evokes a particular emotion in their target audience.
Companies are finding that rather than investing in a sales force to push products and services, creating a brand that people admire and respect is far more cost-effective. Now, more than ever, professionals and businesses alike are focusing on and cultivating that identity to connect with their clients and customers. For those of you looking to create a brand of your own, here are five tips.
Just like an individual, a brand can also have a personality. That personality can be shallow and bubbly, or deep, enticingly mysterious, and carefully managed. The ‘personality’ of your brand is of utmost importance in business and in society, as business becomes more interwoven into our daily lives. Personality gives life to your brand, allowing you to reinvent yourself or your business while managing your image and making yourself likeable. The optimal brand personality is composed of two primary factors, your Identity and your market.
1. Find Your Identity
Like personality, identity can be an ambiguous term. While an identity is a part of your personality, it is largely considered to be your background and characteristics you share with others. This could be the country and culture you live in, as well as your race, religious beliefs, and profession. Simply put, it is the criteria and categories you use to identify yourself. For this reason, many brands take off because they are based on a central figure with a strong identity. Consider Martha Stewart, or Barack Obama. Both strong brands with extremely defined identities.
2. Know Your Market
The other component of your brand personality is your market. While the most important part of identity is to simply allow yourself to ‘be you’, to some degree your market will need to be able to identify with you as well. That is why it is best to sell to markets to which you already belong. In addition to significantly cutting down on the time you spend researching your market, this also helps you stay emotionally invested in your business even when the chips are down. Do research using Google’s Trends or Insights tools, as well as analyzing your competitors.
Once you have done this research and feel confident about your budding brand personality, you need to express it in the following three ways.
3. Express Yourself Visually
Choose a color scheme that conveys the emotion you want to exude. Make sure that colors, graphics, and logos are appropriate to your industry. A professional graphic designer, and possibly an image coach, can help you create the perfect visual image for your brand.
4. Keep Communication Consistent
Whether it is content on your blog, emails you send, conversations you have or speeches you give, communicating through the lens of your brand will help you make real, lasting connections with people.
5. Behave Yourself
You need to behave in line with your brand. If you are an aspiring rock star, you have far more leeway when it comes to behavior than would a tax accountant. Actions you take that conflict with your brand are almost guaranteed to turn many of your audience off.
Crafting your professional brand identity and carefully managing the expression of it guarantee a brand that will stand the test of time.
For more information on brand building to evoke a resonating emotional experience with your customers, contact us today at ScreamerCo.com!