I hear so many people speak about building their brand and I often hear them say two things: all you need to do it be active on social media or that its a process that doesn’t generate returns quick enough to be worth the investment. Of course being online is a major key and it is true that it takes an investment. I started my brand over 10 years ago, so speaking from major experience – it can take years to build real influence behind your brand. It is not a sprint; building a brand is a marathon. You have to prepare and condition yourself for the long haul if you ever hope to experience that runner’s high. The miles will be worth it. See what I did there ! 😉
While you’ll no doubt hit moments of fatigue — and a fair share of skepticism along the way — don’t let any of that knock you off your path. If I’ve learned anything from building my own brand, it’s that it all starts with your relationship with your audience. The following steps can help you get and keep their attention:
Pay attention to what content/information your audience responds to and build off of that. We can get so caught up in how we see ourselves that we miss out on what is actually having an impact with our audience. Connection = influence. So make sure to connect! Develop and distribute rock- solid content! 85% of B2B marketers tend to agree, saying that content creation was a factor in their organizations’ overall success. What’s more, 75 percent of marketers saw positive returns upon starting a content marketing initiative.
Stay true to your own message. A lot of people become distracted with what others are doing – DON’T! You will always be behind, if you are following the footsteps of someone else. You can’t chase trends or styles if you want longevity. A successful brand is the result of consistent and authentic content. So be yourself – someone is always enjoying and watching.
Quality is key. If you rush or skimp when creating, it will show. Invest in crucial tools like continuing your education, and updated equipment. I can’t stress enough the need to invest in yourself on all levels personally and professionally. If you want to be taken seriously, “getting by” won’t cut it. Make the sacrifice now so you can enjoy the success later. Invest in good cameras, blogging equipment, functioning computer, and whatever else you need for your brand.
Engage on social channels to build influence. All businesses currently use social media guidelines as part of their content marketing strategy. If you make each network a focus, you can grow your numbers greatly. If you are unable to do it yourself, you can hire an intern to run it for you. I love the quote, “do your best and hire out the rest”. All the content you’ve worked to create does you no good if the right people don’t see it. Work with your team to develop a social distribution strategy, and start using your content on social to engage with those who matter most: potential customers and partners.
Get yourself in front of people. As you start surrounding yourself with content and building an audience interested in engaging with it, your reach will grow, but don’t get ahead of yourself here. People tend to mistake the number of followers they have for actual influence. I’ve gone to so many networking events, I couldn’t even count. It’s important to actually go out and meet people. Build relationships and get to know people. Your network is your net worth!
Network with other influencers. Build relationships with influencers in your industry. Help others by sharing resources and exchanging ideas. Hell, throw an opportunity or two their way when you know it would be valuable to them. Not only is it the right thing to do, but it can make your relationships stronger. Plus, who knows? Someday, you may be the first one they think of when they have an opportunity to pass along.
I hope these help! 😉