One of the primary characteristics that define a brand is the uniqueness that your experience provides it. While we might attend the same seminars, classes, and even read the same books, the knowledge we gather from them will always be different.
The same goes for the experiences that we encounter in our everyday activities within our brand. The clients we encounter, the audiences we engage, and even the techniques we try and test, all influence how we feel about our brand. All of these encounters help a brand generate its own unique image. The question is: Do you allow that to exemplify your brand by sharing it with the audience?
How do you feel when you successfully engage an audience? Is it good? Are you excited? Is it a new opportunity for your brand? These feelings are natural for any individual working towards personal branding, and can help humanize your brand and generate a relatable image for your audience to see.
How do you extend it through your business? Sharing it with others is sharing the experience, and experience says a lot about your brand. The act of sharing is one of the most effective ways to generate shareable content. While numerous brands neglect to demonstrate their own excitement in preference of cold professionalism, it tends to hurt more than it helps. For the personal brand, the feeling of excitement or even disappointment can give the audience something unique they can grasp, relate to, and ultimately share with others.
Selling more than
The most basic principle that any personal brand can adhere to is the notion that your brand doesn’t just offer a product or service. You are in fact selling yourself. Your personal brand is the core that you want and need to sell if you’re going to succeed.
People do business with people they know, like and trust. [tweet this].
One of the feelings that you can express that ultimately defines your brand is the simple act of believing in what you do. Have you ever encountered a salesperson that spoke without confidence in their product? You asked them if they were reliable and they told you the deal-breaking phrase: I don’t know. Nobody wants to do business with any brand that doesn’t believe in what they are doing and selling.
This takes confidence in your brand. However, it further demands that you share that confidence with your connections.
You must believe in your product or service. Otherwise, how can you expect others to do the same? Share your belief and faith in your product or service, and people will more likely believe the same.
Always remember that both you and your connections are advocates for your brand. What you say and do is what they will hear and see. And what they know about your brand is what they will share with others and thus advocate about your brand.
What you share with your audience, and ultimately what they learn about your brand, all depends on what you share through your actions, words, and assorted content. In the online world, social networks, forums, and blogs are all opportunities to share your experiences and thus generate a feeling of appreciation within your audience.
A trustworthy experience
As you consistently share your brand’s content with the audience, you will begin to develop a level of trust with them. The ultimate goal here is to define yourself as an expert. Experience is one of your brand’s greatest assets, and that is what you need to enforce in order to gain the trust of your audience. As you share your own experiences, the audience will also share theirs. This is a brand’s chance to grow and explore new opportunities and learn more about the individuals it is trying to build connections with. Ultimately, your brand will be able to say the right things in the right places to the right audience.
One area that is commonly believed to be a useful asset but actually tends to weaken a brand is spreading your expertise amongst a number of different strengths. The resulting effect is that your true expertise becomes too thin and can even confuse your audience (what is it that this brand really does?) Instead, it is far more practical to exhibit your strengths and refrain from being a jack-of-all trades. Specify your profession and expertise to the audience and work to enforce certain characteristics rather than a widespread list of abilities (Linkedin offers professional grading on your profile, in which case you can see this in action).
Your brand’s experiences, combined with the experiences of your audience are what inevitably put feeling into your brand. Be open and allow your experiences and feelings to intrigue your contacts and generate a unique brand image that the audience can relate to.
Maria Elena Duron, CEO (chief engagement officer), buzz2bucks | a word of mouth marketing firm, is skilled at making networks “work” and harnessing powerful online and offline buzz, she facilitates online visibility services and word of mouth coaching and workshops – taking companies and professionals from buzz-worthy to bucks-worthy.