7 Steps To Grow Your Brand
Website – check. Instagram – check. YouTube channel – check. Where do you go from here? There are a million different questions going through your mind. Where do I start? Are people going to like my content? Do I need all of those social media accounts? Will it be worth my time?
Trust me, I have been there. To the point that at the beginning of 2017, I completely re-branded. This wasn’t easy, and I basically threw away over $500 in web design and “custom logos” I had to come to terms with the change because this change was for the better.
When it comes growing your brand or setting the tone for your brand, there are some very important foundational things that need to be done. This is where the good, bad, and the ugly start to show up and show out. Honestly, you are not going to like it and it just may be the most unfavorable thing you will have to do.
Hear me when I say … IT WILL ALL BE WORTH IT!
It’s not enough to have wonderful content – you have to get it in front of the right people. I encourage you to develop an audience persona. Think of this as your bull’s eye – the mark you want to hit. Out of all of the people in the world, what does YOUR ideal client look like? For me, I want guide professional women between the ages of 22-40 as they navigate their professional lives. These women are diverse: Mothers, wives, college educated, looking to enter the workforce or snag that next promotion. I take all of these factors into account and keep this persona at the forefront as I develop content. This also helps me to use the appropriate communication platforms, promote the most applicable products, be strategic at events where I speak, and make the smartest investments for any advertising I do.
2. The Defining Moment:
Think about when you knew you hit your stride. I haven’t always had my brand solidified. However, I was persistent and I experimented. I learned from my setbacks and was grateful for the opportunities that came my way. My big moment was when I reached 1,000 followers on YouTube! I realized that I had to define my own success and stop comparing myself to others. To date, I have hosted hair shows, started a podcast, expanding my social media platforms, attended NYFW and been a guest speaker at countless events, including ALT Summit! Started at the bottom … now I’m here – and continuing to grow!
The one thing that will set you apart is how you communicate with your audience. This goes back to that persona in step #1. You know who your target audience is, so research the best ways to connect with them. For example: Do you have an older audience? Snapchat is NOT a smart choice. Do you have a visual brand but don’t have a YouTube, Pinterest or Instagram page? Don’t set yourself up for failure. The key is to work SMARTER, not harder.
Gaining the confidence to follow your passion can be TOUGH!
You are the BOMB.COM and you need to know that! The reason why you need to get into the mindset of knowing that you are the BOMB, is because this is your business, this is YOUR brand. Get started on the right foot and know that the content that you are creating for your supporters is good content. Your brand is a huge part of who you are and most importantly, it is what you are passionate about. Be confident when you go out to engage with your supporters and other content creators. You have to be confident in the information that you are sharing. You are the expert on your brand. No one else can tell your story the way that you can.
You have to have focus when you are building your brand. I know that I am a multi-creative and I can’t be put in a box. I have so many different things that I love to do and that I am passionate about. Because I do so many different things, it can be challenging on just focusing on one thing at a time. It can get overwhelming trying to do “everything,” so set goals for yourself. Start small, plan accordingly and get organized. Develop a content calendar and plan your posts. Use Hootsuite and Facebook’s automated scheduling features for multiple posts. There are methods and resources out there for you to balance everything.
This one has to be the key to my success so far. What’s funny about this is, I just figured it out last year (2017) while attending New York Fashion Week. I have always worked in the makeup industry and transitioned into a lifestyle brand. However, my No.1 strength is business and sales. Therefore, I was able to refine my brand and carve out a niche for petite corporate style. Think about what makes YOU unique – this will help you to discover your purpose. By being honest with yourself and knowing the answers to these questions, you will be able to create relevant content that will spur brand loyalty and growth.
This the KEY to your brand. If you lack consistency, it may mean to some that your brand can’t be trusted. A consistent brand can have long-term benefits and it will cement who you are and what you are trying to do. Consistent posts, responding to inquiries, liking comments – all of this goes a long way in how people will perceive you. Also, be sure your name is the same. If your business is “The Write Stuff,” be sure that your social media handles and website reflect this as well. It is important that you can be found, regardless of where people are looking.
You’ve got the tools – get out there and thrive!
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PC: Unsplash-J Kelly Brito