You want to improve the way in which you use social media. After many years with a small private profile, following other influencers, you’ve noticed that there are many things you are capable of – be it cooking or pc repairing- and you know that you have the potential to attract a large chunk of followers. But how is it done?
Certainly, it’s impossible to gain a million followers in a day or two: getting results requires a commitment to studying and working hard to build a consistent relationship with your audience.
It’s not an easy and fast process and there are no shortcuts to it. Are you thinking of buying followers and likes packages? Well, you shouldn’t. There’s more to building a successful personal brand than that.
The journey might be extenuating and that’s why we decided to help you get there…
Personal Brand VS Business Brand…
If you’re the face of your business or building a business that revolves around your expertise, creating a personal brand is a no-brainer. You might be an author or speaker, a coach or consultant, or a freelancer. Whatever you do, your brand distinguishes you from the competition. A truly charismatic personal brand will also leave an indelible impression on any who come into contact with it.
Be it your customers, your audience, or people who have no interest in what you sell, a compelling personal brand is impossible to forget. The more memorable you are, the more people will flock to you, follow you, talk about you, and recommend you.
Even if they never buy from you, they become a fan, and as a fan, they do your marketing for you.
Collectively, the loyal fan base of a personal brand is infinitely more powerful than even the most expensive marketing campaign.
And if you have a business of this nature, you’re likely finding it tough to ensure it’s profitable and sustainable without the personal branding element.
It’s easy to see the benefits of personal branding for entrepreneurs, freelancers, and businesses that revolve around a figurehead.
But what if you have a company with its own distinct brand. Perhaps you’re in software development or sell physical products. You’ve likely never even considered developing a personal brand. Why would you? There’s already a brand you need to promote, one that’s linked to your business.
And yet personal brands work incredibly well as marketing vehicles for all businesses, whether the person is the ‘face’ of the business directly, or simply builds a personal brand alongside the business, bolstering it by proxy.
The Musk Factor…
The majority of people aren’t interested in following your company. They are, however, interested in interesting people. In movements. In phenomena. In celebrity. In personality.
Elon Musk has more followers on his personal Twitter account than his three companies – Tesla, SpaceX, and SolarCity – command between them. This is also true of Richard Branson, who has far more personal followers than Virgin, Arianna Huffington, founder of Thrive Global, and Gary Vaynerchuck and his company VaynerMedia, and countless other highly successful entrepreneurs.
What they all have in common are personal brands that are so strong they can leverage them to increase their exposure and, as a result, effectively market their companies.
The Benefits Of Building A Personal Brand…
Fame, authority, respectability are just a few of the undeniable benefits that come from building a personal brand.
Having your own personal brand will be beneficial for you as well as for your company for a wide number of reasons. The first one is that people love using social media to search for relatable content, and getting small glimpses of your life will give them the sensation of knowing you personally. That’s how your audience will start trusting you and empathising with you.
To put it simply, building a personal brand will give you a tri-dimensionality that a company could never achieve on its own and will make your audience more likely to want to know more about you. And, of course, to buy from you.
Let’s dig deeper into a detailed description of the overall benefits of investing in personal branding…
Growing Your Network…
The majority of people don’t enjoy using social media to get to know more about companies. What they want to know are people who use certain companies: do they like this product? Would they recommend it to others? Is their lifestyle/diet/workout plan similar to the one you have? Are they relatable?
Let’s talk again about Elon Musk. Yes, the guy who has the ultimate power over cryptocurrency with a simple tweet or a comment.
Let’s be honest: I find it hard to relate to a billionaire. And so does the vast majority of the world’s population. And you know what? I don’t really care for Musk’s tone on certain issues and I’m sure he’s not the kind of guy I would ever go on a date with, but I somehow ended up knowing everything about his life.
Many people follow him for his quirky intelligence, others are just sci-fi fans who see him as the realisation of all of their fictional dreams.
It doesn’t really matter: his numbers keep growing. I started investing in cryptocurrency after reading one of his tweets and became a fan of his ex-partner, musician Grimes.
Sharing his life helped him, his company and whoever was related to them grow their networks.
Trying to do something similar can be beneficial for the overall popularity of your business.
I’m not saying that you will be able to fly to Mars, but it’s certainly worth a try.
Building Authority And Trust…
One of the main benefits of building a successful content strategy is gaining authority and trust. And it’s the same with personal branding.
After all, your personal brand is built through content!
How does that work? In different directions. The first of which is that your audience will find you relatable and trustworthy. And the second one being that you will invest in posting valuable and relevant content.
Being able to convey your mission through bits and pieces of your personal story will help your audience acknowledge you as an authority in the field you are working on, thus being beneficial to you and your company, if you have one.
Landing Media Placements And PR Opportunities…
Let’s say you want to become a lifestyle influencer. You know, traveling, food, drinks, and all that jazz. You’ve been working your butt off to make sure you plan and post consistently. You’ve identified all of the things your audience wants you to talk about and you are delivering impressive performances.
To the point where someone you didn’t know before slides into your DMs to ask you the fatidic question: “Collab?”
It’s one of your favourite bistros in town and is offering you to collaborate with them. No, they don’t want you waiting tables: they want you to do what you do best. Be a living billboard.
What will you get in exchange? It all depends on the level you are at. If you are a micro-influencer, it could be a couple of free meals, if you have more than 20k followers it’s more likely to be money. The more you grow, the more you will be able to profit from your audience.
Let’s take it a step further: you’ve reached 1M followers. Congratulations to you and your hard work! Media will be likely to book you for interviews, podcasts, or events in which you can speak about your expertise.
In no time you will be able to land a deal with a book publisher to write about how to organise the perfect holiday in Greece!
Creating Your Own ‘Tribe’ Of Followers…
In his book on leadership, Seth Godin theories the necessity of audiences to be united in a somehow “tribal” relationship through a shared interest, and to be led by a respectable personality that will help them grow as a tribe.
When you create your personal brand, you immediately put yourself in the position of becoming your community’s leader.
That shouldn’t come as a surprise, since the very term “influencer” indicates someone who’s able to influence other people’s decisions through a well-delivered set of actions – and the right lighting in selfies!
Gaining people’s trust and working on building your authority will make you the “leader” of the community you are working for.
Is it a lifestyle? Is it food? Is it technology?
Their interest in the matter and their trust and sympathy for you will make you their go-to answer to any problem.
The Ability To Charge Premium Prices…
You probably know it, by now. The more authority you gain in a certain field the more likely you will be able to charge premium prices for what you had been doing for less.
If you built your own personal brand in order to promote your company, you might be able to charge more if someone wants to receive a certain service from you instead of another one of your employees. After all, you are the ultimate expert and you deserve to be paid more than others.
The Creation Of An Evergreen Platform…
Think of your profile as a place where people with similar interests hang out while finding out more about new products and useful techniques.
It’s something that you will continue profiting from well long after you’ve decided to post.
My immediate example is beauty influencer @rawbeautykristi. She started her journey in the makeup world a couple of years ago with a YouTube Channel where she would do makeup tutorials and product reviews. She immediately captivated the audience’s attention with her authenticity and her kind disposition, demonstrating amazing expertise and a sincere devotion to her followers.
Now she has her own makeup line but her channel is still extremely active and followers are still able to find valuable content from the past.
Earn Money As An Influencer…
Yes, you can earn money by being an influencer. How much? Well, it all depends on your commitment and a series of other factors. Is your niche saturated? Do you have what it takes to become a successful influencer?
Generally speaking, influencers can profit a lot from being chosen as another company’s face. You will earn followers, visibility, free products, and actual money. Sure, maybe you won’t make five figures in a fortnight, or not even enough to leave your day job, but it’s still a nice side hustle.
Land Paid Speaking Gigs…
This would be my dream come true. Get paid to talk about myself!
Once you’ve become an authority in a certain field, people are very likely to be curious to know more about you, your journey, and your expertise. We all love to hear a successful origin story!
It’s not uncommon for influencers to be asked to do webinars or Ted Talks in which they basically have to disclose some of their personal brand’s secrets.
But you could also be invited to speak at a conference about your specific field, or, even, be booked to speak in a podcast about something absolutely unrelated to what you do.
The possibilities are endless, once people start liking you as a brand and as a person.
Create Passive Income Products…
How do you do that? Well… E-books, podcasts, webinars, something that you work on once and continue to display on your profile that your followers might want to buy. This is something extremely remunerative for influencers and content creators.
“With SO MUCH content and SO MANY small businesses popping up online, a brand that connects to a person’s face is much easier to trust faster. It takes less time and effort to build a relationship with a personal brand as compared to a business brand.”
– Pia Silva
How To Create A Powerful Personal Brand…
You’ve set your mind on this: you want to do this. You want to work on creating your personal brand. Now HOW THE HELL DO YOU DO IT?
We’ll be honest with you: it’s far from easy and it might take more time than you think before Kim Kardashian follows you on Instagram and you are invited to an influencer’s get-together. But we believe that you have what it takes to get your verified check on Instagram.
Let’s start building!
Build A Rock Solid Foundation…
One of the most common misconceptions about becoming an influencer is that to craft a personal brand you have to invent a persona. In fact, the opposite is true. Your followers will quickly get tired of a glossy, flawless persona who never had a problem in their life: authenticity is key.
Building a personal brand shouldn’t be about positioning yourself as something you’re not. Rather, it’s about establishing who you are as an authority, through things you are incredibly good at and passionate about.
But where should you start?
Ideally, you should do a thorough inventory of your brand assets:
- What are your main skills?
- What experience do you have (in terms of work)?
- What have you experienced (in terms of life)?
- What is something you’re genuinely good at?
- What are your credentials?
If you can point to relevant experience and credentials, it’s easier to establish your expertise in a field. And yet, a lot of the time you will find an audience values real-life experience over a degree, or years spent in a corporate job.
Some of the most powerful influencer brands were built on the back of a journey of discovery, or a tale of recovery.
Let’s say you want to be a travel blogger, or a lifestyle influencer. You have zero experience, but you’re absolutely burnt out from the day job and desperate for a change. And this is something you’re really passionate about. So you quit a high-flying corporate role in order to invest yourself full in travel, or cooking, or home decor.
You may not have and credentials, but if you tell the story right your audience will swoon over your courage, and the inspiring tale of how you’re living your best life, following your dreams.
In order to build your personal brand, you must include your side interests, passions, core beliefs, and values. You must show yourself at your fullest potential, without being afraid of sharing insecurities and flaws. Actually, if you’d decide to show some of your struggles your followers are more likely to believe and trust you because who the hell has a perfect life nowadays?!
Ask yourself: what do you want to be known for?
What is your purpose? Who do you want to influence? What do you want to accomplish?
What is the key message you want to communicate? What message do you want to consistently reinforce in your content and in your marketing? If you could give only one piece of advice, what would it be?
What are some of your personal characteristics and traits that you can weave into your brand?
These are the core questions that your followers want you to answer. These are the questions whose answers reveal your potential and your personal brand as it is before you develop it.
These answers are the key to a true diamond in the rough. What you do with it it’s entirely up to you.
Define Your Target Audience…
This is a key point of every content strategy: know your audience. Who are you talking to? Who’s your ideal follower?
This is important because it won’t just help you know what to post, it will also give you some further indication as to WHERE and WHEN it’s appropriate for you to do so.
For example, if you target GenZ you won’t need to spend much money on Facebook, but you’ll have to invest in Tiktok and Instagram instead.
The general rule of defining your audience as it is commonly applied in marketing follows the same rules here.
Create An Irresistible Offer…
What have you to offer? What is your unique selling point as a person? Your audience will likely ask you what’s the difference between you and another influencer in the same field. Or, even worse: what do you have to offer more than a regular, unpolished, another user? You have to be capable of showing what your strengths are and why someone should follow you instead of others.
What do you do that other people don’t? You have to be able to share your expertise in an efficient way so that your followers will want to come back for more.
You might be offering weekly videos in which you review products, or you could be sending out a newsletter. It all depends on what you are doing and whom you are doing it for. Give your followers a reason to follow you and recommend you to people who have similar interests.
Build And Optimise A Personal Website…
Yes, maybe you have a successful page on Instagram, but potential business partners will want to see more than that.
You need an actual personal website you can send people to in order to read more about your expertise and your content.
When starting your activity as an influencer you will notice that yes, Instagram and Facebook are powerful tools but they are not exactly the best way of dealing with other companies. Social Media is your showcase, but you need a platform where you store your relevant content. And that is your personal website. Think of your website as your home and your office: this is where people you have attracted over social media would want to come once they found your content interesting enough.
If another company wants to collaborate with you, for example, they are likely to want to see more in-depth what you do. And having a nice, optimised website, shows that you are a professional and not just somebody who gained followers because their pictures look cool. In order to have the perfect website, you’ll need more than a professional design and development: you will need to work on your content.
Develop A Powerful Content Strategy…
Content is fundamental: it helps you gain authority and respectability and it’s something that continues generating clicks long after you’ve written it.
That’s because the right content stimulates discussions and engagement. It helps your audience understand more in-depth about your area of expertise and trust you with it. But it also shows that you are extremely committed to what you do and that your business is not just a weekend hobby.
Successful personal brands today like Grant Cardone, Marie Forleo, Gary Vaynerchuck, and many others owe their success to the fact that they publish large volumes of high-value content to help build and nurture their audience.
Through the right content strategy, you hold the potential of generating and converting leads, but also of building a long-lasting relationship with your community.
In the end, you want your followers to acknowledge you as their best source in the field you are working in.
Be Strategic About Your Visibility…
Social can only bring you this far: to optimise your visibility you want to be able to reach a larger chunk of audience through different channels. That’s why you should strategise your visibility. How? Well, there are several ways of improving your reach without limiting yourself to Instagram. Think about:
- Guest blogging
- Public speaking
- Joint ventures
The worst thing you can do when building your personal brand is to isolate yourself. Or, worse, thinking that you have to be the sole authority in your field. Work on building a stable network with other personalities, so that they will redirect their followers to your page and tell them that you are as trustworthy as they are.
Cultivate A Community…
If you are the leader of something people enjoy, they will want to profit from your direct expertise in more ways than you think. A good way of making them feel involved is to cultivate a community through Facebook groups, Telegram Channels and similar assets. Something quick, that can be automated and generate a sense of community and closeness to you. By doing this, your audience will feel special and have the sensation of being helped by you personally, even if in reality the interaction is almost nonexistent.
For example, one of the beauty influencers I follow has a nice Telegram Channel where she shares the best products of the day and gives discount codes on certain brands. It’s incredibly nice and helpful!
There are several solutions that can help you with this, and automated marketing, with the right content strategy, might be the easiest and most effective one.
Ready To Build A Powerful Personal Brand?
The road to becoming a successful influencer is paved with good intentions and amazing content. We are sure you can make it on your own, but if you’d ever feel like you need an extra pair of hands give us a shout.
We can’t wait to become your newest followers!