As a solopreneur you’re in a great spot to really build a brand you can be proud of. You can really narrow down your niche, become a real owner of your niche, and make your mark if you take the time to focus on branding. The best way to do that is to understand exactly what branding is and know what image you want to project – then craft a plan of action to do it. Here are some tips.
- Define Your Brand – Identify the space in the market that your products or services occupy. Determine the emotional as well as rational needs and issues that your customers have. What problems do you solve, and how can that be defined emotionally?
- Understand Your Value – It’s imperative that you know what value you bring to your customers’ lives in terms of how your products and services affect them. When you think in terms of value, think of the emotional aspects of how your product or service helps your customers. For example, do you offer time, freedom, or something else to your audience?
- Put Yourself in Your Customers’ Shoes – The best way to develop a winning branding strategy is to put yourself in your customers’ shoes. You need to be able to understand them enough to think like them, so that you can develop messages that resonate.
- Find Your Voice – As you learn about your customers and realize your value, try to find a voice for your information that speaks to your customers on their terms. Use the words, phrases, and language that bring forth the emotions you desire in them but is authentic to who you want to be as a brand.
- Brand from the Inside Out – Before you can articulate your branding message to your audience, you need to be able to give the message to stakeholders, contractors, employees, and even yourself. If you cannot name the emotion you want to evoke in others, you’re not there yet.
- Know Who the Influencers Are – It helps to know who influences your audience, so that you can observe how it works for them. What words and phrases do they use? How can you leverage the influencers to get your message out to your audience?
- Create a Brand Communication Plan – Start out with perfecting your social media profiles, then actually write down how you plan to communicate to your target audience through blogging, videos, the language you use or don’t use. In addition, determine what sort of imagery you’ll provide to strengthen your message.
- Develop a Plan of Action – Now that you know the message you want to communicate, you need to get everything down into a plan. Decide how and when you’ll implement your plan. For example, if you will need someone else to create the content, you’ll need to add that into your plan.
Branding will help define your values to your audience. Anyone who looks at your business should be able to tell what you stand for just by looking. Just like you recognize the famous Facebook “f” anywhere, even without the letters spelling out the word, people can recognize your business too.