The way people see you and connect with you is your personal brand – it’s your reputation and the perception others have of you. Having a strong personal brand will help you attract your ideal clients, establish yourself as a leader in your industry and ultimately, be more successful.
As a small business owner, you are your personal brand, whether you are comfortable with that or not. If you’re not comfortable with it, your pushback typically goes something like this, “My product (or work) speaks for itself, nobody wants to see me!”. Unfortunately for you, that’s just not true. Business is personal, and now more than ever, your customers want to know who they’re doing business with. They want to know who you are, what you’re about, and know that your values align with theirs before they spend their hard-earned money on you or your product. The statistics are a bit staggering – 81% of people check out you and your business online before they ever consider doing business with you.
“Ok, but why do they need to see ME?”
Well, because business is personal, and seeing your face helps clients view you as friendly and approachable, and someone who stands out in your market. Your clients want to see who is behind the business, and form a connection with you. Showing your face will build trust and credibility, and establish you as a knowledgeable expert in your field.
There may be a rare case where it doesn’t make sense to show your face as part of your brand, but in general, being visible and approachable can help establish a stronger personal connection with your customers and build your brand.
Why are you telling me all this?
Two reasons – first, to help you understand the value YOU bring to your brand, and second, to encourage you to have professional photos taken to help you market your business and elevate your personal brand.
In my work as a portrait photographer, capturing images of people “in their element” is what I do, but I also understand that being photographed isn’t comfortable for everyone. But that certainly doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it. The benefits of having professional photos far outweigh your discomfort with the process. The right photographer will put you at ease and bring out the best in you, and who knows, you might just end up having fun! 😉 No matter what, you will come away with gold in terms of your marketing potential!
“So, I got all nervous when you said photos. Remind me again WHY I need to do this?”
“This can’t just be about the photos. There’s more to it, right?”
That’s true, you can’t just slap up some great photos on your website and expect people to flock to your business. But you CAN pair those photos with compelling copy on your website and in your marketing materials that will tell your potential clients all the things they need to know about you and your business, including why they should want to do business with you.
Your marketing copy will tell your potential clients things like:
Your personal brand should be a large part of your overall marketing strategy, but it’s an area that is often overlooked because, as a small business owner, you’re so focused on the day to day operations required to provide your product or service. You forget that people are interested in you and want to connect on a deeper level with you and your company before they ever send an email, place a phone call, or walk in the door. But if you want to grow and scale your business, your personal brand needs to be an integral part of your overall strategy.
Your Personal Brand IS about a lot more than the photos, but the pieces all go hand in hand, and in order to have a strong and compelling personal brand, YOU need to be a part of it.
Get out there and schedule the photos! If you’re local to me, let’s get you on my schedule for a personal brand photo session. If you’re not, please find a photographer in your area and get on their schedule. Depending on where you’re located, I may even be able to provide you with a name, so let me know. I’m happy to help. Once you’ve got the photos, pair them up with your marketing copy to create an invitation for your ideal clients to do business with you. You’ll be pleased with the results!
As your Digital Marketing and Operations Consultant, I’ll keep bringing you business and marketing tips like this. You can put the information into action on your own, or if you find that you could use a little (or a lot) of help, please let me know. That’s what I do, and together we’ll find the best solution for you, your business, and your budget.
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