marketing your personal brand
(why you hate marketing + four ways to fall in love with it)
Most entrepreneurs (especially the creative ones) get their unders all in a twist about marketing because, despite best intentions, they over-complicate it. In its simplest form, marketing your personal brand is really just making your audience aware of how you can help them. So every time you post to Facebook? Marketing! Every time you put an ad in your hometown newspaper? Marketing! Every time you go Live on Instagram? Marketing! Every time you publish a new blog post? Marketing! Every time you make small talk with an awkward acquaintance at a party you don’t really want to be at and they ask what you do? Marketing!
And once you realize how many possibilities there are when it comes to marketing your personal brand, you’ll realize you don’t actually hate marketing – you just hate the way you’re doing it.
FOUR WAYS TO FALL IN LOVE WITH MARKETING:
1. Focus on one or two platforms
If you feel overwhelmed by the amount of marketing you’re supposed to be doing, everywhere, all of the time, you’re most likely spreading spreading yourself too thin. You’re trying to post to Instagram and Facebook every day, Pin 20 new pins every day, write a new blog post every day, email your list every day, record a new IGTV every day, and write a new article on LinkedIn every day.
But you don’t have to be everywhere, and you certainly don’t have to be anywhere all of the time (what a relief, right?!). Figure out what’s working by asking yourself questions like: Where are your current clients coming from? Where do you feel like you’re building a real community? Which platforms are you having deep conversations on? Instead of trying to do everything everywhere all the time, determine what’s working for marketing your personal brand and double down on that.
2. Believe in what you’re selling
If you don’t truly believe in what you’re selling, you probably don’t fully understand how what you’re selling changes lives. (Please read that again because I said changes, not saves.) Your business doesn’t have to save lives, but it must have the potential to change lives. And I promise your business DOES have that potential – but it’s your job as a personal brand to discover what that potential is! So email your coach, call your business bestie, journal for 15 hours, hire a brand strategist, do whatever you gotta do to so you can start standing out in your industry!
3. Have the desire to sell what you’re selling
I know from experience how easy it is to get stuck in a business you hate. You’ve poured so much time, energy, and money into making your business what it is, so the idea of pivoting is absolutely terrifying. But when you start dreading inquiries, have no desire to book more clients, or despise every single project you work on, those are all signs it’s officially time to pivot. If you’ve been waiting for a sign or a blessing or a pep talk, this is it! Let that shit go so you can start putting energy into building a business you actually like.
4. Understand your personal brand
With the internet came a new era of marketing. We can’t just show up and mumble “this is what I have for sale, here’s how to buy it” anymore. There are thousands (maybe millions?) of businesses offering the exact same products and services as you – your brand is what will influence people choose your over someone else.
Having complete brand clarity means understanding what makes you special and unique in your industry. And that stuff is GOLD when it comes to marketing, because you won’t be saying the same cliché shit your industry peers are saying. You’ll be able to speak directly to your ideal client in a way that makes your business absolutely irresistible when it comes to solving their problems (and if that’s not the definition of successful marketing, I don’t know what is!).
Anyone who tells you there’s only one right way to market your personal brand is a bigger liar than a candidate in a presidential debate. You’re allowed to indefinitely log off the platforms you hate, pour more energy into the type of marketing that’s easy, and experiment until you figure out what feels right. I know I say this all the time – but honestly? You’re the boss, and you can do whatever the hell you want!