A big part of building your brand comes down to personality. For most people, their personalities are a big part of what separates them from competition.
I often times use the example of personal finance bloggers because they perfectly exemplify what I mean. You can have two bloggers sharing tips about how to get out of debt, but one blogger could be speaking from the perspective of wanting to start their own business and the other blogger could be talking about the relationship between their debt and their weight. Both share many of the same strategies, but the feel and personality is completely different.
Unfortunately, people really struggle with being themselves and transparent online. I recently did a live Periscope broadcast where I explain why this is so detrimental to building your brand. Essentially, if you aren’t yourself and if your brand doesn’t represent that, your market is going to have a very hard time relating to the brand. If they can’t relate, then they will have a hard time purchasing something from you.
Many of my viewers on the broadcast agreed. They relayed stories of how they’ve run across personalities and brands that try to be “perfect” online instead of showing some transparency. As a result, they have a difficult time relating or wanting to engage with the brand because it seemed unreal or untouchable.
Here are some of the ways you can use your personality when building your brand.
1. Be transparent and open
Once again, personal finance bloggers exemplify this perfectly. Many of the most successful personal finance bloggers, some of which went on to sell their sites for seven figures, got started by airing all their financial dirty laundry to the world.
They are honest, they are bold and they are human. What ended up happening is individuals started turning to financial bloggers for money advice instead of more traditional personal finance outlets.
Gabby Bernstein is another prime example of how transparency works. She is extremely open about her past as a drug addict and constantly shares stories from her personal life in an effort to help her followers. People eat it up.
Why does this work? One theory is that with the digital age we’re craving connection. By being open and honest, even when things aren’t going well, it humanizes a brand. Another theory is that people can tell when someone isn’t being authentic and it turns them off.
2. Have boundaries when building your brand
Of course, you can have boundaries. You don’t need to share everything. For example, some people don’t share about their kids online and I don’t mention my personal relationships out of respect for other people.
However, you do need to get used to being more open with the world—especially as it pertains to your business. For instance, I’ve talked about my financial failures on my blog, and those are usually some of the most popular posts. I have a colleague who is a relationship coach and she got started by sharing her dating adventures and fiascos online.
Take stock of what stories you have that pertain to your business and which stories don’t. It’s up to you to decide whether or not you want to set a boundary for the latter.
3. What’s your deal?
Most people have a story as to why they got started in their business, and for most people this is the perfect place to start when trying to put your personality into your brand.
Take some time to write out the story of your business. Why did you start it? Were you having a particular struggle and needed a solution? What do you love about it? Once you’ve answered these questions find places where you can sprinkle it into your brand such as during podcast interviews, your about page and blog posts.
Remember, people don’t want to spend their money on someone or something they don’t know. One of the best ways to let people start getting to know you is by sharing your story publicly.
4. Practice getting comfortable in your own skin
Perhaps the most difficult part for people about using their personality in their business is the fact that they may not be comfortable in their own skin. They are also afraid of criticism.
Excuse my frankness, but you need to get over it. Of course, this is much easier said than done. As with most things (and not just building your brand), the only way to get comfortable in your own skin is to face your fear head on and start putting yourself out there.
There are also some practices you can do to cultivate this comfort. For example, meditation helps clear mental clutter, connects to yourself, and it really helps you get comfortable with your own company. Some people also keep a running list of the ways they provide value into the world. These may seem like small actions but they help increase self-confidence in a tremendous way.
Being yourself will inject that personality and authenticity into your own brands for added success. Ex. share stories, have boundaries, etc.
What’s your personal story as it relates to your brand? Share in the comments below!