Why every businessperson should have a personal brand

| February 17, 2020

Every business owner should be building their own personal brand in addition to their business – because customers and clients connect with people, not products and services.

Social media and branding expert Carissa Hill said a personal brand was important for business owners because increasingly customers want to know the people behind the company.

“Customers feel more comfortable purchasing products from people they know, love and trust,” she said.

“By building a personal brand on social media you grow an audience of people who like you, relate to you and want to know more about you.

“You will attract an audience of people who share your values and beliefs, which will in turn adds trust and credibility for your business.

“Plus, it’s another asset you’re building up. If you ever do sell or leave your business, your personal brand will help you move into other areas and give you a platform of a loyal audience to work with.”

Within the first year, Mrs Hill earnt $150,000 from her personal brand and grew her salon too. After four years she was making more than $1 million per annum from her personal brand on Facebook.

Mrs Hill said the key for business owners looking to build their brand was to know their customers, what social media platforms they used and to share engaging content.

Share who you are – be transparent. Show your authentic personality. Tell people about what is important to you, what you love to do, causes you support and hobbies. People are genuinely interested and curious about other people, including how they look, act and what they eat.

Don’t overshare – be strategic. While sharing your struggles or fears can build rapport with followers going through the same thing, you do need to be selective with what you share.

Only share content if your followers will be able to relate to it and it might help them overcome an obstacle. Do not offload your problems or seek attention.

Be empathetic – always think of your audience. How can your followers benefit from what you share? Can you help them with something? Will your post entertain or inform them?

Be responsive – engage with your followers. Like and respond to comments and encourage discussion. Contribute to conversations and share your opinions.

Mrs Hill said if you build an audience who benefit from what you share, you can promote products and services they will want to buy.

“You can provide links to your business, offer an eBook, provide an online course or promote products,” said Mrs Hill.

“While a social media brand can provide opportunities to make money, what is rewarding isconnecting with people who share your beliefs and values,” she said.

Mrs Hill said many business owners were scared to put themselves out there on social media, due to a fear of how they might be perceived.

However, Mrs Hill urged business owners to be self-confident in sharing who they are and what they stand for. She recommends also having a plan for dealing with any criticism, negativity and trolls.

“Dealing with negativity in an honest and professional manner is a good way to build trust and respect,” said Mrs Hill.
A personal brand on social media has been instrumental in the success of many business owners, such as Richard Branson (Virgin), Janine Allis (Boost Juice) and Lorna Jane (Lorna Jane Active Living).

Mr Branson has become the poster boy of personal branding. His online persona promoting adventure, philanthropy and turning ideas into reality has helped the Virgin name extend across 200 companies.