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How to Brand Yourself: 5 Tips To Master The Art of Selling YOU
By Adam Bauthues
As business owners first start out marketing online, they tend to emulate their mentors or those whom appear successful in an attempt to appear successful themselves. This is not a mistake but rather a first step on the path to real business success. There is no other way to start. Emulating those you respect and have learned from in this industry is the first step to becoming a great business owner. However, when you learn how to brand yourself rather than to stand in the shadows of your mentor, coach, or business idol, you will begin to become even more valuable to your customers.
Here's 5 tips on how to brand yourself, and begin the process of selling YOU!
1) Be Who You Are - Don't Fake It
I suppose as you are emulating respected teachers and mentors that you are following the "fake it till you make it" concept, but in actuality you don't want to think of it in this way. You want to be yourself right from the beginning. Be who you are and find your unique voice. There is only one YOU! Don't waste this unique branding opportunity! This is how you brand yourself - you simply be who you are!
One of the easiest ways to be yourself and share your true personality is through your communications. This can be through your email messages, your blog posts, your social networking interactions and through your content efforts. When you write or speak with anyone in your industry - client, prospects or business associates, let your personality and communication style shine through.
For example, if you have a knack for colorful metaphors, use them. If you have a very animated face when you speak, don't try to cover it up. These unique characteristics will be just the things that make you memorable and endearing and will set you apart from your competition. When we do business, we do business with people because we like and respect them. Don't ever be afraid to be yourself.
2) Tell Your Story
Your life story is unique and needs to be told. Everyone has a story and their own set of experiences. Your experiences and perspective, whatever it may be, will be interesting and helpful to others around you. You will be able to explain things from a different and unique angle - your angle! Additionally, it is your unique group of experiences that has brought you to where you are today; they're valuable and will be how you brand yourself and your business.
For example, Joe Vitale has written a number of books on the law of attraction and spiritual issues, and he uses his personal story of homelessness to engage people to demonstrate that he's just like everyone else and has had his share of troubles and triumphs. This story helps him sell books and attracts people to him who are perfect for what it is he is presenting.
Think about other experts and business people you know who use their personality to create a brand. What about Martha Stewart? What about Jon Stewart the comedian? Share who you are - your interests, skills and experiences. Let people get to know you, relate to you, and let your personality be your brand.
3) Be Active and Participate
When you work online or from home, it's easy to become separate from the rest of the world. However the best way to share your personality, and make it your brand, is to participate. This means participating online and off in various different things. Join networking groups, participate on social networking sites and forums. In other words, get involved. People may not always remember your name right off hand, but they WILL remember your face.
4) Keep It Real
This means that you need to simply be human! One of the tactics used in copywriting is to write in such a way that people relate to you. If you spend the entire sales page telling people how great you are, they're not going to buy it. However, if you tell people about where you come from, what mistakes you've made, what lessons you've learned and how you got where you are, they're going to be much more interested in you as a person and as a business.
If you keep everything on a human level (not a super-human level) people will respond more to what you have to say. It is the overall human experience we relate to.
5) Be Likeable
Finally, think about who you buy from and why you buy from them. Chances are one of the reasons you often buy from people is because you like them. You probably like them because they are more like you! Likeability is a HUGE buying trigger. You're likeable. Everyone is likeable to someone. You become likeable to your target market by following all of the first 4 tips listed above. Use them, share your personality, and you will brand yourself and sell more of your products or services.
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BIG Tone: I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I did.