Have you taken the time to sit down and decide what your business really is? Most people never really think about it on the level that I want to share with you today. Ask any business person, whether online or offline, and most will tell you their business is delivering information, or a product or a service. These are things you do in your business but your real business is you. You are your business. If people don’t like you or feel compelled to buy from you, then you really have no business. And it may be time to figure out why it is people aren’t buying from you. Maybe you have a great product, but if customers aren’t drawn to you for some reason, they will never know about your great product or service.
In many cases you need to sell yourself before you can sell your product or service. You do this by branding yourself. You also need to brand your business entity, but it’s just as important to brand yourself. I’ve ran across several marketers with personal brandings; the mostly sane marketer, the sweetie marketer, the sassy marketer (my own personal brand.) These are titles you remember and makes it easy to find in a search. You may not remember which product or service they offer, but if you can remember their personal brand, you can find their information real quick. You need a personal brand to sell yourself. If you can’t sell yourself, chances are you can’t sell a product or service either.
The second thing you should realize is that your business is a people business. It’s people who are looking for your information and become customers. If you’re not getting up-front and personal with your audience or target market, it’s likely they will find someone else who they can relate to on a personal level.
We all have days that we post to our blogs or websites and leave out our personality, but if you want to continually reach your audience you need to give them something to keep coming back for. Information is great and content is king, but customers are looking for a more personal experience these days. Many businesses, especially brick and mortar businesses, have forgotten about the personal experience with their customers.
I purchase a lot of information and content from online sources. I look for high quality materials but I also purchase from people who have marketed themselves with a great personality. I look at how they’ve branded themselves as much as I do at the quality of their product or service.
If you’ve left personal branding out of your business model, it may be time to go back to the drawing board and inject yourself into your business plans.
What have you learned about how personal branding affects your online business? Does it make a difference? Please share your thoughts and opinions.