10 Ways You Can Grow Your Personal Brand As a Small Business Owner
It is essential to talk about ways you can grow your personal brand as a small business owner. The value of your work, contribution and efforts made to build your business is directly aligned to you and cannot be underestimated.
In fact, it was the catalyst for building the personally branded website by yours truly right here at DespinaKaratzias.com, and it was only fitting to talk about 'brand you' as we enter a new financial year for the inaugural post.
I began this personally branded website in 2017, and although it's satisfying to complete it now, I wish I had finished what I started sooner, and by reading this, I hope you are inspired to do the same.
More than anything, it's in your best interest to develop your own piece of real estate as soon as possible and here are ten ways you can do that in the new financial year:
1. Use Facebook to Run a Personal Brand Campaign for Yourself
As a small business champion, you know the value of running a Facebook campaign for your business, but that's not the only thing Facebook advertisements can do for you. You can also start promoting yourself. Understandably, it would seem weird, given the average person's response to an ad, but it can give your name a big boost if done correctly.
It's a matter of doing two things right: getting the right audience and giving them something of value. Both of these are connected and sum up content creation. However, what value you have to offer will determine whom you'll target. Even putting in $5 a day can reap immense benefits.
2. Launch a Personal Blog or Website
You can also do many of the things you do for your small business for yourself. For example, your business is not the only asset that should have a website. Instead, you should launch one that revolves around you. A place where you can put up your own thoughts and ideas, separate from the company.
Personally, I am tied to more than one company and image, limiting the content I can create, what I can say, and the topics I can cover. Separating it from my creation and launching Despina Kaeatzias will allow me to express my own voice, not just as the representative and leader of a small business but as a human with interests in many other areas I am eager to explore and write about.
3. Distribute Personal Posts on Social Media
Creating things is not enough to get people to recognise your value and grant you authority and trust. Due to the sheer density and volume of posts being uploaded daily worldwide, simply existing won't get people to see you. So you'll have to get in front of the people.
The most common and efficient way to do that is through social media. Post content in the right places, and you'll find the visits coming if your offering on your website is tempting enough. Should you already have a strong community of followers on your socials, you have a significant advantage in driving traffic back to your personal website and attracting new followers.
4. Get on LinkedIn
LinkedIn is the premier social network for professionals, fantastic news for anyone developing their personal brand. Since this is where those professionals hang out, this is the perfect place for long-form and in-depth content. Nothing will get your personal brand booming like the respect and support of your peers and other experts.
There is an added bonus to appealing to the demographic on LinkedIn. While shares are almost always good, any shares you receive from fellow professionals are inherently more valuable. This is not just because their praise or support lends you their authority, but because they likely have their own audiences who will see your posts, multiplying your content's exposure.
5. Send Out Weekly Newsletters Through Email
Email marketing remains a perfectly viable way to promote your business and personal brand, something I did religiously when I started out. You may be missing out on its ability to encourage you as a separate entity. Industry developments and how they pertain to your customers will often be of interest to them and will establish you as someone who tells it like it is, and thus worthy of their attention and trust.
6. Start a Vlog
While some topics naturally lend themselves to long-form written content, others are less effective in word form. Personal opinions and reactions to events in the industry and the trials and tribulations experienced as a small business owner are often better shared through video.
There are plenty of topics you can discuss. The relatively unique experience of running a small business, for example, can draw in viewers and boost your exposure and that of your business, carving out your own powerful distribution and amplification strategy.
7. Start a Podcast
Video isn't the only thing to boost your exposure and personal brand, and I would never recommend what I have not done myself. Weekly podcasts can give your audience something to mull over that's related to you and is relatively easier to generate than video.
However, while vlogs tend to be more on the personal side, podcasts are more professionally angled. Because you have so much time and the listener's ear, it's when you should really put your expertise out there to shine. So pick topics that will let you do that.
Speaking of the podcast, I am planning on season 3 of my podcast titled Tourism Hub Podcast, and if you have an exciting story to share, please reach out will love to chat.
8. Give to Your Local Community
While the goal is to have your personal brand go worldwide, it's often best to start local. Offering your expertise to the place you live in can help form the foundation of a community while simultaneously giving back. As an added bonus, this can help create relationships with local businesses that you would've otherwise missed, leading to incredible opportunities.
You have to start somewhere, and it may as well be where you live. This could be as simple as offering pro-bono work or as media-intensive as appearing on the news as an expert. So keep an eye out for opportunities, and you'll find that you're sitting on a goldmine of personal branding development.
9. Hire a Professional Photographer
Pictures say a thousand words, and when a blurry image represents you online, it says that you're far from a professional. While it seems like a small thing, having a great headshot you can consistently use helps develop your personal brand. Hiring a professional photographer every few years will let you do that, and you'll look great as a bonus.
10. Keep Learning
We are here to learn, but the harsh truth is that your personal brand will only have value if you have something to offer and as long as something exists to show for your work. It will be their expertise for many small business owners, but just as many carry their careers using a winning smile and a charming personality. How you do it will depend entirely on why you do what you do, what you want to build for yourself and how you get the word out.
Let's recap and take action:
Whatever you decide, we all need to keep learning and doing because new techniques are being discovered every day. So if we want to succeed, we need to keep up and lead the way.
Crafting your personal brand and making it shine to the benefit of yourself and your small business should be one of your top goals. The good news is, whenever you're reading, this doesn't matter. Any day is a good day to promote yourself because if you don't, something terrible will happen, nothing!
Will love to know what are your thoughts on a personally branded website, and how do you think it could add value to elevating your uniqueness?
Sending love and here's to your excellence always,