Tag: Brand

#AuthenticallyAwesome – An Authentic Branding Strategy

As a small business owner, you already understand the value of branding. If you’ve been following my blog, you’re also aware of the importance of personal branding. Now that you have the fundamentals, let’s talk about where many people go wrong with branding. We spend so much time putting together our strategy and our content that occasionally authenticity gets lost.
Have you ever come across any of the following?
  •      A brand that didn’t ring true to its own messaging?
  •      A business owner whose message felt forced?
  •      Content that didn’t seem to match up with the projected brand?
  •      Inconsistency or lack of clarity in a brand’s content?
  •      Drastic swings in message without a proper re-branding strategy?
I’m sure at some point, you’ve witnessed at least one of the above scenarios. It happens. Just because you are an entrepreneur or small business owner, doesn’t mean that you are a branding expert.
The path to authenticity lies in taking the time to discover who you really are. What does your company provide, what pain points does it solve, and how do you provide solutions to problems? What is your message? How do you want to present it to the world? These are the questions that have to be answered because, without this knowledge, you are not able to be authentic in your marketing.
“Authentic companies don’t try to be something they’re not, but instead recognize what they are, what they do best, and what customers value most about them.” 
Vision Critical

Where many businesses miss the boat is failing to remain consistent. Consistency is a vital aspect of branding. Your company, and your team, must live your brand story every day. It needs to be shared, in a variety of ways, as often as possible with your target audience. A clear, concise, consistent message will make a bigger impact than just throwing whatever out there and hoping for the best result. Understand your brand, understand your message and then develop a process where you are sharing high-quality, authentic contentwith your followers.
Brand Loyalty
Authenticity has a powerful return on investment. Honesty, integrity, and candor are highly sought after and valued. Opening up a window, allowing yourself to be a bit exposed and vulnerable, breeds trust within your audience. That trust converts into brand loyalty. Loyal brand ambassadors are the best, FREE, marketing strategy a company can have. Your tribe will not only follow and engage with you – those who trust your message will share it, whenever and wherever they can. This is the real return on being authentic in your marketing.

Don’t be afraid to shine. You have to put yourself out there. Toss aside the masks you tend to use for protection when you face the world and have faith that your authentic message will draw the right clients to your doorstep. This is a fundamental foundation to #BeAwesome with your branding.

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!
Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+,YouTubePinterestInstagram and the tools to manage them.

#BrandConsistency – How Consistency in Social Media Helps Your Brand

Consistency in Social Media is a necessary component for gaining and keeping loyal followers. Here are some of our top tips on being consistent:
1. Create a familiar look across all platforms. Your brand is a style, a unique voice among a sea of distractions. You want your potential clients and customers to recognize your brand no matter the platform (or mobile device) they use. Visual branding is just as important as the message you wish to share. For brand consistency, you’ll want to use the same color palette, logo/avatar, use the same filters in places like Instagram so your images look organized and part of an overall package, and consider using templates for graphics you share on social media sites. This will make the fonts, colors, designs, and size constant.
2. The voice must be the same across all platforms. A voice is more than grammar and spelling (but that’s important too!). It’s about how you speak to the public. Are you relaxed? Do you take a formal tone? Do you go out of your way to make viewers feel invited? Or do you prefer to keep a wall up between you and your customers and client? Deciding your brand’s voice involves these three elements: company culture, your audience, and your authenticity.
3. Humor is a unique form of communication. It can break the ice, relax or offend others, or reflect on the social and moral core of the individual. Sometimes, it can be all of these things at once. Keep your humor focused on your brand. When you use humor, imagine how someone new to your brand would interpret it. According to Sprout Social, 71% of consumers have unfollowed a brand on social media because they were embarrassed by the brand’s posts. You are on public display. Don’t forget that.
4. Consistent posting is key to brand success. Lack of interaction on your social media pages will leave a potential client/customer thinking you have gone out of business, or worse, that you don’t care about their business. If time is a factor, use social media tools to keep your pages updated.
Brand name recall is key to building a loyal following. Reinforce your brand’s beliefs and goals.
And one more bonus tip: Create powerful calls to action. Don’t be shy. This is still business. 
Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!
Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Blog, Google+,YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram and the tools to manage them.

#LoveYourBrand – The Difference Between a Personal and a Corporate Brand

Branding is a popular topic in the marketing arena and for good reason. A brand can make or break a business. To make matters more complicated, most small businesses don’t even really understand the concept of branding. They’ve heard the lingo, and they know it’s important, but the nuances of branding strategy are often still a distant consideration.
A Branding Lesson
What is branding anyway? Is it a logo or a set of specific colors? Maybe it’s a tagline or a slogan? Perhaps it is all of that combined?
Actually, no. Branding is nothing that a company or individual specifically does or presents to the public.  This is where it gets tricky.
Now go back and read that again. Yes, that’s right. The audienceis in control of your brand. Does that mean you should pack it up and stop fighting the good fight? Absolutely not! The more you can implement and showcase in terms of what you want your audience to believe about you, the better.  This investment in time and resources tells a story to your clients or customers about what you want your business to be. 
Corporate Branding
Corporate branding is very conceptual. Most companies take a concept or an idea – a company vision – and build their branding around it. Once a business has an idea about their brand, they can then mold each and every touchpoint to reflect that brand image. Touchpoints happen whenever an individual comes into contact with your company – whether that be at the receptionist desk, through the mail, reading a magazine, or talking to an employee. Taking the time to really incorporate a corporate brand into all of the available touchpoints helps to ensure a company is consistent with their messaging.
Personal Branding
A fairly new idea on the branding horizon is the notion of personal branding. How is a personal brand different from a corporate one? The answer is simple. A personal brand is all about people. It’s about you! How do you come off in a room full of people? What impression do you give your co-workers, employees, clients, or while networking? These different perceptions are all facets of your personal brand.
This means that spending time developing a brand image for yourself is just as important as developing a brand for your business. What impression are you trying to make in person and online when it comes to your work? How can you implement those ideas into what you do as a career?
Of course, personal and corporate branding do not need to be mutually exclusive. The best of both worlds involves taken your personal branding and seamlessly incorporating that into the brand for your business. One type of branding is not more powerful than another. The sweet spot is the intersection where both personal and corporate meet and blend together.

Love the idea of branding but having a difficult time figuring out where to start or how to combine your personal brand into what your business is already doing? Our team loves helping businesses create a personal narrative and brand so that they can continue to follow their purpose and #BeAwesome!
~ Social Media is changing the way people do business.  Don’t get left behind ~ 

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere, of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedIn, FacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram and the tools to manage them. 

Click here for her 
Social Media Workshops, Classes and Seminars.

Love Your Brand: Why Should YOU Be a Part of Your Branding?

The marketing world has caught on to the importance of branding. Branding has become such an integral part of a company’s marketing strategy. This method’s value has increased to the point that branding is no longer just a corporate policy. Small businesses, speakers, authors, job seekers and entrepreneurs are now encouraged to integrate branding into their marketing as well. However, this type of branding looks a bit different than the traditional style.
Personal Branding
Personal branding is the online persona or image that an individual projects. This includes all the digital touchpoints from the website to the blog to all the social media platforms. It includes online collaborations, live streaming, videos, or any other content created and distributed. A personal brand is a real thing and exists, regardless of the person’s acknowledgement or knowledge.
YOU as the Face of Your Brand
Perhaps you already have a business entity and brand. Maybe you’ve even invested in a quality logo, brand colors and online touchpoints. However, as you interact with people online or network with people in person – it is YOUR face that people associate with what you do. It’s your voice and your mannerisms and the energy you bring to the conversation. As content gears more towards visual – including live streaming and videos – it will be you that the audience gets to know and trust. With so much noise competing for the same small places, a genuine, authentic connection with your audience is essential. Some of the top personal brands online naturally evolve into influencers and generate the type of viral attention that most companies strive for.
As you transition to a more personal brand, it will be time to take an audit of all your online assets and tune them into the image you want to portray. This means spending some time with your good friend, Google, to make sure that your name online is directly associated and connected to your personal branding.
It will also mean investing in some decent professional headshots. Team up with an experienced photographer so that they understand your brand image when taking photographs. These brand photos are an integral part of all your online touchpoints and should weave together in a method that is consistent and on brand.
Personal Brand Enhancements
Once you have the foundation for your personal brand, look into ways to enhance what you have already created. This could be association or collaborations with other strong personal brands that make sense for your work. It could also mean developing a strong backstory or narrative and weaving it into the touchpoints. When producing any type of content, be certain to have the branding in mind during development so that whatever is created remains true to what you have built.  
Developing a personal brand is also a great opportunity to reinvent you, your company or your branding strategy. Be cautious. A personal brand is not a mask or a fake persona. Your target audience will see right thought anything insincere. Be your authentic self and the right followers will automatically be drawn to you.
Understand the value of personal branding but not sure how to begin? Give us a call and we can help you brainstorm and build those touchpoints. The more you #LoveYourBrand, the more you can #BeAwesome while pursuing your purpose.

~ Social Media is changing the way people do business.  Don’t get left behind ~ 

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere, of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedIn,FacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+ , YouTube,Pinterest, Instagram  and the tools to manage them. 

Click here for her 
Social Media Workshops, Classes and Seminars.
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