Some of us know our Personal Brand outside and in. For others, it can take a little time to understand how ‘Brand’ translates to personal service, sales, products or your message. It can feel a little lofty or distant to think of yourself as a Brand. Remember, though, a brand is simply shorthand for all that is you and how that lives, breathes and speaks for you online 24 hours/day, 7 days/week.
Here’s an A-Z of branding to help you understand the efficiency of consistency and continuity in your online persona, so you can come back to it productively to reach your audience with your message in your voice.
A IS FOR AUDIENCE
When you’re building your brand, what do you think of first? Your offer? Your service? The problem you solve? Or, do you have in mind the Audience you want to serve? Like the chicken and the egg, you can’t have one without the other.
You need to know the service and solution you provide: If you don’t know what you’re selling, no one will know how to buy it, but even more importantly, if you don’t define your audience, you can’t find your customers. Choose the wrong audience, your message won’t land.
Your ideal audience is the intersection of:
- A group you like working with
- For whom you can get great results
- Who can afford you
- Who can afford to implement your advice and services
Read more about how to define, resonate and align with and locate your ideal audience to build the perfect niche for your personal brand.
B IS FOR BENEFITS of your BRAND and BUSINESS
Your Brand gets cut through when you can convey the BENEFITS your Brand will deliver to your customers and their Business.
Knowing your Audience, knowing their problems, knowing your solution and the BENEFITS this will deliver focuses your message consistently.
Your Brand is the YOU shaped piece that your clients, customers and audience need to complete the puzzle that is keeping them awake at night. Create a brand that feels right, lures quality clients, builds great customer relationships, crafts connections, boosting the know like and trust factor and makes money by:
- Knowing your Audience and their Problems – especially those critical issues that jolt your customers and clients awake at 3am. Solve these and you’ve not only helped your clients business, you’ve gifted them a good nights’ sleep (priceless!)
- Listening to your Audience for their Problems – in the silences, in the interactions, in the interstitials
- Aligning with an audience who shares your values and respects your value
- Knowing your Super-powered Solution
- Knowing the System that you deliver for problem solving
- Messaging clearly and consistently on socials and link back to site to deliver more information about your process and your Brand.
- having the Discipline to plan your Brand and consistently message this to get the most efficient Delivery of your brand possible
C is for COLOURS, CALM and CONSISTENCY
Colours are a fundamental of any brand. Think Independents’ Teal, Coke Red, New York’s Yellow cabs. Consistent use of your chosen colours reinforces your brand and message and shortcuts the recognition process.
Choosing 2 colours is usually enough – using tones of the colours you choose gives you options and selections. Using colours that are opposite on the colour wheel (Yellow:Purple; Orange:Blue; Teal:Red) allows you to use a contrast colour to highlight active links on your site, or highlight a point in your graphics.
I can’t move further in the alphabet without mentioning COURAGE.
Building a Personal Brand is an act of courage. In the current climate of judgement and take downs, it takes bravery to standup and declare this is ME, what I care about, what I excel in, how I can help you, why you should align with me, even for the most extroverted.
Using this courage, create calm through brand consistency across platforms, messaging, in the details and in the broader strokes. Consistency will help your Brand Message to land for the right audience, and a consistent process and systems to ensure efficiency and profit, and to align with customers and clients without sales friction
D is for a well-DESIGNED DIGITAL STRUCTURE
Your digital structure is your online environment. Structure your messaging so it’s telling the same story across all touchpoints and your Personal Brand will get maximum reach.
These touchpoints are your
- Lead Generation
- Email signature
- What you say when commenting and interacting
Wherever you are online, this is part of your Digital Structure. Design it to reinforce YOUR brand and your message, so it gives your visitor a shortcut direct to your brand recognition. This shortens the buying cycle and reduces sales friction, making your digital environment work for you night and day.
E is for E-A-T
Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness (E-A-T) is not only the perfect way to target your audience with the content they’re seeking, Google has listed true, valuable E-A-T as one of its most important SEO ranking factors.
Expertise, Authority and Trust shows google you are a human entity, who is dedicated to giving your audience what they are seeking. Solve your audience’s problems with your Personal Expertise, to show Authority and Trustworthiness, to win over visitors and the Search Engines
Extra Es: EFFICIENCY and EFFECTIVE FREQUENCY
Efficiency is knowing yourself, your values, your superpower, your audience and your service or message or mission. It’s knowing who you serve and building a system around that so your solution can be delivered efficiently, on repeat
Transforming problems to solutions is a potent superpower. Do this efficiently and it’s a mighty profit machine.
Messaging with Effective Frequency (consistently, often, across all outlets; social, site, ads, as well as word of mouth – your Elevator Pitch) gets your message heard.
Wikipedia defines effective frequency as: “the number of times a person must be exposed to a message before a response is made and before exposure is considered wasteful”.
In lay terms, this means you will get sick of repeating your message well before your audience does.
F and G are for FUNNELLING LEADS through a GARDEN of GENEROSITY
F and G are all about attracting, nurturing and Growing your audience. A lovely brand is a wonderful thing. Show it off to an appreciative, appreciated audience.
Building a Lead Generation Funnel is an art, predicated on value, value and more value.
Start with a valuable offer: What is that 3am pain that wakes your ideal client or audience member, that you can simply and quickly alleviate – showing your value, expertise, through which you are starting a conversation with the audience?
Sustainable fashion mentor? A 5-point checklist for choosing ethical fabric suppliers that will make production time faster.
Building trades consultant? Write the perfect script for qualifying new clients so your building clients get paid faster and their jobs run more smoothly
The main message is problem solving and time frame. When thinking of your lead generation offer, ask ‘so what’ – if you can find holes in your offer, think more deeply. If it solves a common problem quickly, you’re onto something.
Build ‘know, like and trust’ with your audience after they’ve signed up with a ‘Nurture’ sequence – the emails you send out to people who’ve been kind enough to pay you with their email address.
Continue to deliver generously with an email or messenger sequence that is filled with a mix of free content, outreach, support, collaboration, community building as well as invitations to work with you as a client or customer
H is for HOME
Coming ‘Home’ for me means returning to Calm. When anxious, I quiet my runaway mind, channeling my weight down into the soles of my feet, to create the calm of returning ‘Home’. I hold this feeling and stabilise heightened, erratic emotions.
An introvert, I’d rather be Home than abroad. As a service provider I can’t stay home all the time, but I can take ‘Home’ with me to meetings, presentations, offices.
I also know that it’s often unavoidable, and sometimes the very best of choices to be in discomfort – the challenge of presenting as myself and my Personal Brand when I could be hiding behind the more ubiquitous “Love Communications’ can be overwhelming. Frequency helps build up muscle memory, as does the act of returning ‘Home’ to a calm and focused state, no matter where I am or what I’m challenged by.
‘I’ – your 1st-PERSON BRAND
Using the 1st person in your site copy and everywhere else is essential for a Personal Brand. The imagined commentator penning your website copy is out of place for a PB – own your message and deliver to your audience in your voice
J is for JOY
Show this in your brand and your offer. Show the joy of your solution, of working with you and your audience will beat a path to your door
K is for KNOWING
If you don’t KNOW what you’re selling, noone will KNOW how to buy it – know your offer, know your audience, know your process, know your audience’s audience’s problems, know your unique value that makes your Personal Brand.
L is for [Jude + Stan] LOVE
Yes, this is flagrant self promotion, and one that I’m allowing and owning up to – find your Why, who, what with my Brand Lab workshop. Articulate your message, focus your brand, polish your delivery, define your audience, and broadcast your Brand.
Also, LOVE and LABRADORS… I can’t say more than that.
M is for turning your MESSAGE into MINDSET
… and Money. Effective consistency, the focusing and honing of your pitch, a thorough knowledge of your Brand and curiosity for your audience builds a muscular and robust mindset, ready to see opportunities and recognise alignments.
N is for NICHE
Your ‘Niche’ = the intersection between your Who – (your audience) and their What (their problem).
If your audience is the people with whom you like to work, for whom you can get great results, who can afford you and afford to implement your advice and services, your Niche is the intersection of this and what you do. When you solve the problems of your audience – this is your Niche.
The sweet spot happens when that problem is dealt with efficiently via your signature Personal Brand offer, you can message your audience so they know you’re their solution, you get great results so you are referred on by people you trust and who trust you and the system runs like clockwork.
O is for OUTCOMES
Outcomes are why we are trusted. Outcomes are why we have an audience, they’re the change we want to see and the trust that a relationship is built on. Whether working for the change you want to see in the world, mentoring or consulting, growing your personal brand to deliver a deeper experience in an adjacent business, outcomes is your Brand’s currency.
Many problems? create products around many outcomes
P is for PRODUCTS, PRICING and PROFIT
Turn leads into customers, Customers into revenue, Revenue into profit by building out products and services that truly speak to your audience.
If you’re coming out of a corporate role, you may be unsure how to price effectively. Work out your figures. Here’s a loose calculation:
- What do you need to earn in a year
- what are your costs: your tax, super, expenses
- how many days will you work?
- how many days are billable?
Day rate = what you need to earn in a year / billable days
From this day rate you can set a fee for your service
Part of the ‘Ideal Client’ equation is that they can afford you and can afford to implement your recommendations. Knowing your numbers will help you qualify clients and save you time to devote to connecting with those who can afford you.
It’s good to have a range of offers, from free to high ticket.
- Free content = expert blog and social posts
- Low barrier to entry = downloads such as checklists that will cost the user their email address
- Low cost products: digital templates and products, or a short course that will give your audience a taster for how great and generous you are and lead them into
- High ticket offer – your best offer, tied in a bow, described with benefits first
Decide what is most profitable and efficient for you and do it on repeat.
Working with you one on one, is the highest strata of engagement but it’s not necessarily the most profitable way to work. Your investment is high (your IP, your time, the cost of sales acquisition, follow up, delivery), and the results you deliver are probably equally top level. Work out what is your Core offer – the service you can deliver on repeat, efficiently, with the best profit.
Q is for QUALIFY
Your Personal Brand is your unique skill set meeting your audience, clients and customers needs. There may be other people you can help and possibly feel you would like to help, but building a clear Personal Brand also means staying focused.
Trust your knowledge of what you excel in and your values and drivers and qualify out the less than quality leads.
R is for ROLE
The role is the singular function upon which the survivability of your brand hinges. This role should be protected at all times.
To understand this role – interrogate what is the biggest promise you make to your audience – what is the singular activity that most supports this – this can never be compromised. Everything else revolves around ensuring the continuity of this role above all else. This focused outcome results in spending less time in the weeds: the grist and grind, and delivers the freedom of a robust, well oiled income generation and client delivery business.
Yes, this is a reference to the central premise of the Solo-preneurs and business owners’ bible Clockwork, by American business author, Mike Michalowicz. It’s a great read and easy audible listen
For me, the ROLE of my business is to clarify the message and focus of my clients’ personal brands. Funnel building and marketing for these clients is additional in the signature system that evolves from this. My function to support the Role of my brand is to clarify my message so clients know like and trust me and the process in order for them to commit to buying this service.
My team know this is the central Role of our business. They work toward it by building the best SEO ready websites and efficient marketing systems around this.
S is for Signature System
Your Personal Brand shows the specificity of you. Specificity helps you State your purpose and helps you find your audience by speaking their language, about your ability to Solve their pain points. Thinking about your Skills, your Service and the Signature System that is the way you deliver your QBR is what supports your Personal Brand.
T is for TIME FREEDOM
You’ve designed your Brand and your Business to represent you personally. Doing so gives you the Time Freedom to find aligned clients, that will know like and trust you and, afford you and afford to implement the services you deliver.
U is for UNIQUE
Your Personal Brand is as unique as you are. It’s your digital fingerprint that represents you online, standing in for you while you sleep, rest, play, work, take time off, network, sell, build, live.
Your business strength comes first, then you target the customer who will benefit the most from it. Identify focus and cater to the consumers who will most benefit from your Unique offering.
V: VISION, VALUES, VISIBILITY
Your Brand is a mix of the External look and feel that draws, calms, attracts, builds trust and the Internal: the VALUES that guide you to deliver solutions in your unique way. Whether a business or an individual, the value you deliver is personal, realised through the VALUES you stand for: the essential intangibles that create an emotional connection and personal delivery beyond brand look and feel.
VISIBILITY – being found by aligned clients, audience, to move your mission and message, video, stands for you when you can’t be there yourself, visibility and a sense of you, especially for service industries.
This can be a challenge for the introverts among us. I’m undoubtedly the best Personal Brand coach at my address, but if I was only selling to Stan the labrador, I would neither push through my challenge edge nor have the income to continue to feed him.
Layering personal VALUES into your brand adds a recognisable humanity. People buy from people: selling online, or meeting with clients remotely, doing business in the absence of a personal transaction – your Brand tells the story of you. Our brains are hard wired to respond to and remember stories: add VALUES through story telling builds association and recognition and a depth, ease and efficienty to your VISIBILITY.
W is for your WHY, WHO and WHAT
What’s driving you to build your Personal Brand?
What is your Why?
Are you on a mission with a message? Are you wanting to sell more products or services? Are you driven to be the change you want to see in this world?
Who are you driven to work with? Who is your ideal client and customer – those people you like to work with, for whom you can get the best results, who can afford you and can afford to implement your process and suggestions.
What do you deliver? what is the significant problem your customers and clients have that your expertise can solve?
Connect your Why to your Who and What and you’r on your way to a successful and fulfilling business.
X is for X-ING OUT ITEMS ON YOUR TO-DO LIST
Turn your To-Do into a Don’t Do.
Create a stop list and add all of those things that are getting in the way of Growing your Personal Brand and performing the function that delivers the central role.
Y is for YOU
You are your Personal Brand: Your personality, values, style, affinities, network, experience, day to day choices, Personal Brand is Your Message in Your Voice to Your Audience. The world is large
Z is for ZEITGEIST
There’s alot of talk about Personal Brand being a ‘thing’ at the moment – part of the zeitgeist, linked to this particular period of time. However you interpret Personal Brand, it’s beyond a movement or fashion. Your personal Brand is how we connect in a digital age, especially one where we are in and out of lockdown (a statement that will link this post to a moment in time)
The things we value are communicated through the brand voice and imagery, which is an extension of ourselves.
Your Personal Brand is a roadmap to good clients, good work, strong, repeat sales and a financially and intellectually rewarding, whole hearted business
BUILD YOUR BRAND.
BUILD YOUR AUDIENCE.
I can help with everything you need to build a brand from your expertise.
From targeted website help to a brand visibility audit, from a new site build, to my full Personal Brand pathway, I’ll get you online and on your way.