WHY IS BEING AUTHENTIC SO IMPORTANT TO YOUR BRANDING?
Hey people. There’s an old saying that I absolutely love and it’s the perfect way to start this blog. So before I start talking about what I want to talk to you about today, I’m just gonna say it…
And that, more than anything is why it’s so important to be authentic in your branding. It’s your idea, your business and your story which got you where you are today. And it’s your energy and passion and drive which is going to take you where you want to go, to achieve your goals and really make it happen. So why waste time, and more importantly energy, trying to be something, or someone, you’re simply not.
BE TRUE TO YOU
As you guys know, I’ve been where you are right now and I know how hard it can be to carve out that niche and find your voice when you’re starting out, let alone getting established. And that’s why understanding you, your business and your goals is such an important part of the branding journey. It’s one of the absolute essentials of creating successful branding and can give you a real sense of purpose when it comes to building your business.
I mean, it’s so easy to compare yourself to others, look at what they’re doing and try to be like them, but if they’re already established, why would a potential client come to you over them? And what if their ideal client is nothing like yours? By standing out and being true to your personality you’ll be able to reach and identify with your ideal client so much faster.
Branding is all about creating that connection with your audience, and through being honest and authentic in your brand elements or the way you do your Facebook lives you’ll start to build that famous ‘know, like and trust’ factor with your audience.
Combine that, with your passion, and you’ll create that emotional connection, making your audience feel invested in your story and vice versa. And when that happens, they’ll be telling all of their friends about how amazing you are, which is what we all want!
THE EFFECTS OF INAUTHENTICITY
So how can not being yourself harm your business? Well the answer is pretty simple: massively.
If you’re trying to be someone you’re not the clients you are attracting will soon see through it, all the while your ideal clients have no idea you’re even there, because you’re not targeting them.
I’m sure you’ve all been there when you’ve seen through someone, whether that’s a colleague, or a friend, or any kind of relationship really. I mean, it’s an instant turn off, right? So imagine what it’s like if that person is a brand, you’re going to tell all of your friends not to use them and none of us want that!
But I’m not just talking about being fake. This is about consistency too. It’s ensuring the branding you create matches your personality and the vibe of your business. I mean, if you make creative, luxury and elegant wedding cakes, you don’t want a really corporate logo and serious copy – it just doesn’t add up. And potential clients will see that straight away.
Consistency is so, so, important and you have to have every element of your branding in tune to stand out in the craziness of the modern digital world. People are craving that real, human interaction and with your clients being bombarded by more and more noise, the secret to success is not shouting louder. it’s all about finding your niche, and telling your story in an authentic way that appeals to your ideal client.
Your branding designer and copywriter should always work with you to create branding which encapsulates all of these things – that’s how you create something truly unique, which will act as the launch pad for your business. It’s why I personally, love to spend time getting to know my clients, their stories, their goals and their clients, so we can start the branding journey off on a super-strong foundation that only goes from strength to strength. It’s also why a lot of my clients become friends…
HOW TO BE MORE AUTHENTIC?
As I mentioned above your branding designer and copywriter should be working with you to make sure you authenticity is evident, but here are my top tips:
1. Know and understand your brand and your story
2. Set goals for where you want your business to be in the future
3. Define your ideal client and get to know them inside and out
4. Build your story, personality and experiences into everything you do
5. Consider every touchpoint of your branding
6. Don’t worry what everyone else is doing, YOU DO YOU!
So that’s a more top line action plan and here are a few more practical tips for the every day.
Write your social posts in the way you like to write (obviously check spellings and grammar) but show off your personality through the words you choose. Often simpler is better so the more honest and straightforward you are, the more relatable you’ll be. I mean, when you’re emailing people they’re going to see how you write, so why change it for social media. And if you decide to use a VA, whatever you do MAKE SURE they understand your tone of voice for comments and posts, your audience will probably notice if you’re not being consistent – trust me.
Think about the clothes you wear to meetings OR on Facebook lives. These are touchpoints for your brand just like social, email or your website. You’re representing and selling your brand to potential clients, so make sure you reflect the values in the outfit you’re wearing.
Share your story on your website and make sure everything is written to showcase your personality. By telling an engaging, relatable story you’ll keep your audience on your page, which is so important when it comes to converting potential clients into customers. And while we’re on websites, make sure it’s absolutely on point with the rest of your branding, AND of course, mobile optimized. Everything has to feel consistent as well as authentic in order to grow your business and create that seamless journey from discovery to delivery for your ideal client.
So to sum up, there’s no need to reinvent yourself, create a persona or try too hard. Because at the end of the day, your authenticity IS your secret weapon. It’s the one ingredient that no-one else can copy, or replicate or steal. It’s the way you stand out and the way you get established in your industry. Because at the end of the day, you, yes YOU, are your biggest brand ambassador, so you have to live your business and your branding. I mean, at the end of the day we’re all here because we wanted to do something we love, right?
So set your goals high and create the brand and branding that will take you there. Then it’s all about working hard, and being nice to people. Be authentic, do you and you will make it happen.