As a small business owner, freelancer, blogger or any other branch of solopreneur, your brand is directly associated with you as a person. Building a brand that honors your highest self is an integral part of amassing a loyal and engaged audience who trust you and in turn, trust your brand.
Despite the modern-day expectations of unrelenting ‘perfection’, the majority of consumers actually crave honesty and depth from the businesses they connect with. They want to see the face, the attitude and the personality behind the brand.
From a personal perspective, crafting and molding your brand to become an authentic reflection of yourself will likely be one of the most rewarding things you ever do. Not only will it help you to solidify your branding and reach customers on a personal level, but it will allow each aspect of your life to align with your core values and ideas.
Here are 10 simple ways to build a brand that honors your highest self.
Be Your Authentic Self
The one sure-fire way to come across as real and personable to your audience is to simply be real and personable. All of your unique quirks are what set you and your business apart from the rest, in the most wonderful way possible. What’s more, building a brand based on your own personality and core values will be much more effortless than trying to mask who you really are.
This authenticity will shine through, encouraging your audience to place their trust in you. Each of us has power in our story, and there is always someone who can relate and feel lifted up and inspired by us. Harness the power in your story and tell it through your brand.
Speak With Your Own Voice
Similarly, make sure to communicate like a real person, particularly on your social media platforms. There is absolutely a time and place for formality and professionalism, but your voice says a lot about who you are and how you see the world. So use it! Are you a deep thinker, or perhaps you have a very specific type of humour? Add that extra layer of authenticity by conveying your message exactly as you would in real life.
Allow your audience to get to know the real you, not just the business you. If you’re struggling to get away from a ‘salesy’ persona, think about how you would speak to your friends. Simply transfer this tone onto your social media platforms when engaging with your audience.
Show Your Face
The modern world is growing increasingly impersonal by the day, and potential customers value being able to put a face to the brand. If you’re not used to showing your face online, this can be daunting. But rest assured, your audience want to see you, and they want to get to know you!
Connecting your face with your voice is a powerful way to make your audience see you as their friend and collaborator, rather than someone who is simply trying to sell them a product. And remember, it’s ok if you feel a little insecure about this – it’s only human, and showing your humanity is a huge step in creating a brand that is reflective of your true self.
Keep Your Message Consistent
This is a huge and often overlooked point. In order to create a brand that is an accurate reflection of your personality, your message needs to stay the same on each of your platforms. Your unique voice and angle on things should be instantly recognizable to your audience, whatever platform they are using.
Showcasing a different persona on each platform is a sure-fire way to make your audience believe you are not being authentic on any of them! And remember, everything you do should tie in with your core beliefs, right down to who you follow and how you interact with others – it’s not all about what you post. Keep your image consistent and in line with your truest and highest self at all times, no matter what platform you are engaging with.
Build a Relationship With Your Audience
Social media is a powerful tool to connect with your audience. Make use of this valuable opportunity to form genuine and strong connections with your followers and customers. Respond to all comments and reach out for authentic interactions within your community. Show your audience that you are genuinely interested in getting involved with conversations beyond wanting to sell your products or services.
Post Valuable Content
Equally, make sure your content is of great value to your audience. Posting content that is meaningful, relatable, or helpful shows that you want to offer your audience something beyond ‘filler’ posts to keep your engagement statistics up.
Remember, valuable content does not always mean you have to give things away or post something ground-breaking! Simply sharing content that showcases your personality, a cause you are passionate about, or some relevant tips or ideas can be just as valuable.
Be Mindful With Brand Partnerships
Depending on the industry you are in, brand partnerships may be pretty commonplace. Especially if you’re just starting out, it can be tempting to take on every brand partnership you are offered, but it’s important to be picky about who you work with.
As we have already mentioned, everything you do should be an accurate reflection of you and your core values, both as a person and a brand. Be sure to only partner with companies relevant to either your industry or another cause you genuinely care about, and make sure to only promote products you truly love.
Promotion for the sake of promotion will stand out like a sore thumb and damage your business’ authentic image, especially if the product in question is not as good as you say it is. Be careful not to get stuck in partnerships where you are required to leave a great review, regardless of whether you actually like the product or not.
Share Organic Content
It’s perfectly ok to post sponsored content, but posting nothing but ads will inevitably affect your audience’s perception of your authenticity and ultimate intentions. If possible, try to make sure the majority of your content is your own. When you are working with a brand, always be sure to disclose this so your customers do not feel cheated or tricked.
Reject the ‘Highlights Reel’ Ideology
We are all human, and that includes business owners and solopreneurs. There is somewhat of a modern-day obsession with only showing the ‘best bits’ of our lives online, but you are about so much more than that.
If you want your brand to be an all-round representation of yourself, it’s a great idea to become comfortable with sharing those bumps in the road that will inevitably show up from time to time. It’s ok to share your achievements, but try to let your audience in a little deeper, too.
Take Your Audience Behind the Scenes
More than ever before, your audience wants to know about the process. If your branding is all about beautiful imagery and posed pictures, that is absolutely fine, but why not keep it personal by also showing your audience an intimate snapshot of your day-to-day-life as an entrepreneur? This is yet another simple way to increase your brand’s authentic feel by giving your followers an exclusive sneak peek at what goes on behind the scenes.
Creating a brand that represents your highest and truest self is really all about being authentically you. Don’t be afraid to show the ups and downs of your journey and treat your audience as valued friends.
You are firmly at the heart of your brand, which is why every aspect of your business should be a representation of yourself.
Think about what your mission and highest values are, and use your own unique voice to intertwine these messages within your personal brand.
If you’re unsure whether your brand honors your highest self, think about the following questions:
- Am I showcasing my true personality across all of my platforms?
- Am I showing my audience more than highly photoshopped and expertly planned content?
- Am I sharing content that my customers and audience will genuinely connect with and find useful?
In the strange and ever-changing modern world, consumers are craving brands that are personable and real, with a genuine goal and mission at their heart. By aligning your brand with your own core values and granting your audience access to even the less ‘insta-worthy’ aspects of your life, you can effectively create a platform for your business that is every bit as real as you are.
Which of these steps do you think are most important in creating a brand that honors your highest self?