Is building a personal brand really going to help you stand out in the market?
I’ve been recently talking about how personal branding is a distraction when it comes to creating a USP. Personal branding is never a waste of time as people do connect with people, more so than they do with a business.
Yet, when you are trying to stand out in the market, your personal brand is not necessarily the answer to how you do this.
In today’s online marketplace, we’ve seen more businesses than ever going online. And there are even more businesses as a result of the pandemic. The result is that the competition is now super-fierce. And it’s getting harder to be noticed as the number one in your industry.
We have business coaches who are well-established still telling you the same message. That if you build the personal brand then you will make it. I’m here to burst that bubble.
For example, in our travel business each member of staff has their own personal brand. Some staff are more visible than others, and audience will connect with those visible staff members than others. This is what builds that connection and positioning with our customers.
While people need to connect through you, there is only so far that you can take that. As long as you are being visible and true – that is a good thing to do. But that cannot be just it.
You can be the most charismatic person but that does not mean your business will be a success. A personal brand is only a part of it.
What will work for your business?
You need a clear point of differentiation from your competition. To become a market leading service-based business, you need to make the choice clear for your audience.
You need a tangible reason for your USP and to make it as concrete as possible. It needs to be a no-brainer choice for your audience that you are the only person providing this service that they need.
Unique doesn’t always make you useful
People focus on being unique but are not focussing on the selling point. You need to look at the science behind why your service works. You need to be able to explain why your way works better than what else is out there on the market for your ideal audience.
You need to figure out your ideal audience is to be able to figure out your solid USP – think about niching right down to your perfect, ideal client. If you miss this step out, you can’t say why you are the best.
By taking this step, you get specific about why it works for this customer. When you reach this point, you are able to stand out from your competitors without having to shout to be heard above the noise.
We can get into a panic that there isn’t anything more beyond our personal brand. You do have a USP – over time it evolves and you may not be able to articulate what that is.
Your signature system
Don’t confuse your USP with your signature system – what is it within the system that makes what you do work so well? Is unique to you? And is useful to your audience?
Everybody has their unique spin and own way of doing things. Everyone has their own insight into how we do things that we can share with our audience to help them understand that your way is the way to go.
This is about productising the passion for what you do and your expertise.
Often we cannot pull out what our USP is – and this is something that we cover in Elevate. And it may be that you have more than one USP for more than one product.
Your marketing will also become more focussed as a result. And you can serve your clients at a much deeper level.
Understanding your USP will help you take it to the next level both in your business and with your clients. And this is what separates out market leaders.
It also makes achievements measurable. And makes the journey more transparent for your clients.
I’m not trashing personal branding and authenticity, they are important parts of the puzzle but they are distracting from they key parts that make your service unique.
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