Tuesday, June 12, 2018

How to Grow Your Personal Brand

Today starts an on again, off again series called Branding.  This is not only for branding yourself, but for your business as well, if you have one, or want to start one.  According to the article in Entrepreneur Magazine, “7 ways to grow your personal brand in less than a week”, I need to grow this brand called Patricia L. Logan.  The reasons for improving my brand are:
Photo by PicMonkey.com
               
  1)      I do not want anyone to get the wrong idea about me or my company, P. Lynne Designs.  I want to be a truthful and authentic as possible.  If I did it, I need to own up to it and stay true to myself.  I have nothing to hide nor to prove to anyone how that comes off but to me and me alone.
2)      I want customers. 
3)      I want to connect.   
4)      I want to sell my craft/skills.  We all have them, even if it is nothing more than to be a good leader or a good-hearted person.  I want to say to a person, “you have a problem, I have a solution, and I want to help you solve your problem with skills that God has given me.”
5)      I want to influence people to think about new things, see new things, and find what is beyond their world of scope.

I am not getting anywhere, anymore, and I think, in fact, I know that it has to do with the way I have been marketing myself through my brand lately.

I want you to think back to something you tried for the first time. A product perhaps.  What was your initial reaction to it?  How was the advertising?  What happened when you tried it a second or third time?  Was it different than the first time you tried the product?   This is what I go through every time I look at my brand.  I want people to have a positive feeling about the brand of Patricia L. Logan and P. Lynne Designs.  You may not need me all the time, but each time you come to me for help, I want it to be the best experience I can possibly give to you.

What skills you need from me?

In a nutshell, I am a stationery designer.  This is an all-over-throw-around way of saying I make cards, invitations, scrapbooks, mini-books, graphic designer, and freelance writer, rolled up in an itty-bitty package (I’m 5’ so it cutely fits).  I am also an influencer.  I can mix in a little web design, but I would much rather send you to a true web designer if that is all you want.  Same with blog design. I will do it for my clients if it is part of a package I currently offer, but only if they ask.  I will also advise on what social media platforms they should get on.  (here is a hint:  you only need 2-3 that you get on all the time.)

So here are the recommendations for building your brand:

  1. Research yourself:  Sound simple enough, right? Um, no.  To only see what Google says about you only hits the surface.  You have to dig deep.  I looked on PeopleLooker (not sponsored, By the way), and for $18 or so, you can pull up the report you need for yourself, but do not agree to this amount because you can hit the back button, and they will send it to you for $1. (PDF’s are $2.99), so for $3.99, you can see your incriminating bits on yourself.  So far, they have 3 addresses that I have not lived at (such as Naples, FL), an alias name I have never said I was (Who is this Patricia Cole person?) and they spot on with the criminal records, arrest records, judgements, and liens to which I have none.  For any type of credit report, I recommend Credit Karma or Credit Sesame to see where your credit is. I use Credit Karma.  Both services provide a free report.  While you at it, set up a Google alert on your name, so you are aware of any and all reports.
  2. Get a website.  I may also add to this article’s recommendation and say a blog site as well.  Both are great and do allow you to set up an “about me” page.  An about me page allows you talk about you, but I have also read recently that does not mean to make it all about you and what you do.  You want to also say what you can do for your potential customer.  In other words, answer the question they have when they first come to your website or blog.  Example: “I need a good, funny Father’s Day Card”. Answer: “I provide cards for all occasions, including humorous holiday cards for Christmas, Easter, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, and Father’s Day.  There you go, you have solved a problem, and they do not have to email you to ask that question.  Use photos on the website and blog that are high-resolution.  Also, engage in your audience.  Have an inviting website or blog.
  3. Think about your audience.  Who do you want to attract?  Moms, who skydive?  Dog lovers who live in China?  Disney Vacation Club fans?  Define them now.  What do you have to offer them?  People love to get giveaways.
  4. Network, Network, Network.  The more people you meet the better.  More chances of talking about your brand.  Go to local events that cover your topic.  You might reach some influencers.
  5. Be you.  This is what I mentioned earlier when I talked about improving my brand.  The more people who see the real you, the true you, and what your morals stand for, the more readers and buyers, repeat readers and buyers you will have.
  6. Capture information.  Not sure what this article really means to this statement, but I think what it means is when you build your relationship with a client, customer, or reader, the better that person feels about joining your mailing list and bringing in other people.  They need to trust you that you are not going to scam them out of their money, or use it in other ways, besides what their information was intended for (such as informing them of new products or a cause you are campaigning for).
  7. Make Friends with influential people online.  Did you know that in addition to making homemade products, I also am an influencer?  The only thing is I am only a small influencer.  What is an influencer?  An influencer is a person who influences or convince others to buy a product, put money towards a cause, or champion for someone who needs it and gets people to buy into what they are talking about. In order to get more likes, tweets, etc, having an influencer who has a bigger audience can help your business or personal brand.  Do not get any influencer, though.  Get one who knows your industry, and what you are trying to teach to the masses. You will get more viewers to your website. This is why networking is so important.
Takeaway moment: 
If you follow these steps in building your brand, you will have more sales and more people who can be in your corner to help your brand. 

Again, I got this article from Entrepreneur Magazine because I am also build up my brand. I found this information helpful when makes me an influencer.  I want you to succeed in whatever business you desire to be in. When placed in the right position, your personal and business brand will grow and draw in new people every day.