Improving Your Personal Brand as an Entrepreneur
In today's marketplace more and more individuals are calling themselves entrepreneurs. Personal branding is the most important way to set yourself apart from the crowd. A strong brand will deliver several business benefits such as being able to charge higher prices for your services and make it easier to acquire new customers. The question is, what are some concrete steps to improve your brand as an entrepreneur?
The following are the most important aspects of working on for increasing both B2B branding in addition to B2C branding. A business client has different needs from a consumer client. To achieve goals for both types of clients takes different strategies and different emphasis.
Three ways to Improve your Business to Business Brand
Your business to business personal brand should highlight the ways you can deliver superior results for the company. On average, it will take longer to acquire an individual business client but the reoccurring revenue will make the wait worth it. Below are several improvements you should immediately make to increase the value of your business to business brand.
Increasing the perception of dependability is an excellent way to strengthen your personal business brand. Every point of contact with your business client should reinforce the concept of you being dependable. This process has no end point; instead, it is a continuous progression.
Make sure to always deliver what you have contracted to do with your client and do not over promise anything that you cannot accomplish. No matter how lucrative the job may seem, if you cannot deliver the result it is better to walk away and keep your reputation intact as an honest business person than fail to deliver. The nature of a business client means that the person hiring you might not be the end user of your services. Your failure to deliver could damage your reputation irreparably and it might also cost the job of the person who hired you. This is why focusing on improving the perception of your dependability should be your first goal if involved in business to business transactions.
Being able to deliver the service promised is an important way to create trust with your client. On the other hand, quick completion of your client's tasks will exponentially increase your brand awareness. By making the people who hired you look good, you increase the chance they will recommend you to other businesses. Thus, speed is the second goal you should attempt to quantify and improve upon.
While speed is very valuable in a business environment, it means little if the information presented is partially incorrect. You must seek to set up a robust system to catch any inconsistencies in your submitted work. Every work error, no matter how small, that a client sees plants a seed of doubt affecting your brand. That is why your goal should be zero defect assignments which will create a reservoir of goodwill for the inevitable times you will make minor errors. Setting up systems to improve upon the above mentioned should be your main priorities. Your brand will strengthen when you make an effort to achieve goals like these.
Three ways to Improve your Business to Consumer Brand
Your business to consumer brand will focus heavily on acquiring new customers. The individual value of each consumer is lower than the equivalent business to business customer. This disparity requires you to emphasize things such as customer acquisition, visual imaging, and satisfying immediate gratification.
Your advertising should get the word out and show your comparative advantages. This is best accomplished by seeing yourself from the consumer's point of view while answering five questions: what, when, where, why, and how. Once you have developed short answers to the five questions and created a compelling narrative, you can focus on distributing your brand message. Seek to expose your brand message to new people while reinforcing the message with previous customers. Every time you reinforce the message, you add a layer of strength to your professional brand. The most effective way for customers to remember the brand message is to keep it short and simple.
If your advertising has sufficiently improved you will be dealing with a large influx of customers who seek immediate gratification. Improving your efficiency will allow you to satisfy the demands of your customers without disappointing them. Efficiency can be achieved incrementally through business practices such as time management techniques and work order flow management. Each efficient customer interaction adds to your brand's goodwill on an unconscious level.
Hopefully, you have created a successful advertisement and set up efficient systems to deal with customers. This leads to the third most important aspect of business to consumer branding: availability. In today's business world you must be "on" and reachable by consumers twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. This includes setting up social media accounts and having a virtual presence where your customers can interact.
Bringing it all together
The time and effort you put into improving your brand will reward you handsomely in the future. Remember this ongoing process of improvement will continue as long as you are in business.