In today’s business world, it is not enough to have outstanding products and services. Consumers these days desire to know the story behind a brand, what sets them apart, and how they’ve grown throughout the years.
While some might prefer to remain anonymous and secretive behind the keyboard, cultivating and leveraging your personal brand can be an incredibly effective tool in any entrepreneur’s arsenal. Personal branding isn’t just for vanity, as the growth of an entire company can hinge directly upon how much – or little – you show up.
You’ll Find Your Core Customer
Companies grow not just by finding more customers, but by finding and connecting with those who share their core values. Businesses are built upon the bedrock of not just making a sale, but retaining customers. Converting a new customer to sale only has a 5-20% probability, but with an existing one, the rate skyrockets to 60 to 70%.
Srikanth Aravamuthan, vice president of emerging verticals at Exafluence, helps illustrate the importance of this concept, saying, “It’s difficult to boil down the value of personal branding to raw numbers, but at the same time, I always advise business leaders to take action based on analytic-backed insights, rather than just gut.”
Continued Aravamuthan, “By crafting a unique system of data management, we can get a clearer, more detailed picture in terms of who a businesses’ most valuable customers are, and what kind of messages resonate with them. Once you have this kind of insight at your fingertips, it just becomes a matter of putting the pieces together in a personalized manner.”
You Can Adapt A Personal Brand As Needed
Industry landscapes shift at a lightning-fast speed compared with the past, and companies must be ready to pivot quickly and efficiently to keep pace. Successes and failures tend to come in flurries, and while they need to be handled immediately to guarantee short-term success, the larger lessons they speak to must be absorbed for long-term viability.
Adaptability is something that people like to see in a company, as it displays to customers that leaders are listening and willing to make changes based on feedback. If you can accentuate your personal branding with a tone of receptivity to feedback, people will be more likely to engage. This especially matters when things don’t go as planned, which in the entrepreneurial world, isn’t a matter of “if” but “when”.
“You can make a million excuses for why something didn’t go well,” CEO of Glossier Emily Weiss wrote on her lifestyle blog, “but ultimately, just fix it and get on with it. Be a solutions person.” It’s tempting at times to get caught up in hypotheticals and rake yourself over about what could have been done better. However, it’s more important to take note of the core issues, take large and vocal steps to remedy them, and move forward with your business.
Personal brands are organic and unique, and thus easier to change when new information becomes available, and audiences always appreciate this kind of candor from companies.
A Personal Brand Creates A Unique Angle
The amount of digital chatter prevalent in almost all businesses is mind-blowing. The average number of emails in an inbox awaiting action is 200, which means realistically, not each one will get much attention.
One of the primary goals of marketing is to break through and stand apart from contemporaries, and creating a unique angle via personal brand is a tried and true method to do so. Leaders must educate their audience about their products and services of course, but they also benefit from sharing their story to give some backstory behind their brand.
“Building a brand means knowing your story and sharing that story.” Tamara McClary explained in a podcast interview. “Building a strong personal brand creates freedom and opportunity.”
Rather than being limited by just the physical products or services, a brand story creates an avenue and conversation that’s much more open-ended and likely to stand out among the hundreds of other ads and emails. Owning your brand identity and story gives a powerful tool of communication, and it’s not something that can be easily imitated by competitors, as personal brands are as unique as the person behind them.
Crafting a story creates an immediate and accessible avenue for businesses to say something different from their peers and something that can be just the spark a company needs to increase its growth.
A strong personal brand continues to be a solid investment that will pay dividends both in the here and now, and down the line.