You’re an entrepreneur or business owner starting a new business or going through a re-branding and suddenly the questions presents itself: Should I create a personal brand? Below find the pros and cons of personal branding and why it might or might not be a great fit for you.
Your Story. Personal brands are when people turn themselves into brands, i.e. Oprah. In order to achieve this you must have a strong personal story that attracts wide audiences. Stories of victim-to-hero are very popular and help audiences identify with your larger brand purpose. These stories include tales of personal growth, proof of character or overcoming great odds. You become a symbol for what your customers would one day want to be and how they want to live their lives. But this story also becomes anything anyone ever sees when they think of you. Tomorrow, Oprah couldn’t drop everything and start an ice cream business. No, Oprah would have to start an ice cream business that benefits women’s initiatives.
Long Term Strategy. Personal brands can be very strong but they also mean that you – and no one else – will forever be the main ingredient to your business. That means, the day you want to switch gears or try something new you will either have to rebrand or close your previous business. This is an especially important factor to consider if your exit strategy is to one day sell your business. It is very hard to sell personal brands if “the person” no longer wants to be part of it.
Focus. Having a personal brand isn’t easier to manage then other brands and, just like any brand, it comes with clarity of knowing who you are, what your skills are, who you want to work with and how to use your talents. But here’s the added bonus: Because you know yourself so well it also teaches you what you don’t want in your business. It makes decision making a whole lot easier since you can personally decide which business opportunities are a good fit for you. Regular brands, unfortunately, have to keep assessing opportunities back to their ‘why’ and purpose which can get tedious.
Limelight. Being in the limelight can sound appealing at first but is sacrificing your privacy all it’s cracked up to be? If you are building a personal brand it means you need to let people into your life because every audience member needs to feel like they are your best friend. They want to know what conferences you are attending, when your kids are graduating from college and your tips on how to make pineapple upside cake. So, before you leap into personally branding make sure you are comfortable with being in the limelight.
What kind of brand do you have? Let us know below or email us at email@example.com.