When you’re starting a business its easy to get tripped up on this simple but important question:
Am I A Personal Brand or A Business Brand?
This is a valid question and one that we’ll be looking at in today’s post.
OK, let’s dive in.
Let’s start off with a couple of definitions:
What’s A Personal Brand?
A personal brand is built around you - your image, your personality and your lifestyle.
This style of branding usually uses your name. There are pros and cons to this which will look at now.
PROS TO BEING A PERSONAL BRAND
With modern tools like social media marketing, it’s easier than ever to build a personal brand. You can set up your online profile and start building your brand immediately.
Because your business is built around you and your name there’s plenty of scope for you as an entrepreneur to pivot in a new direction if you choose to change your products and services. And the great thing is you can do this without changing your branding or business name.
Dreams Of Speaking?
As a personal brand, it’s easy to branch into speaking or writing a book to share your ideas and experience. When you’ve built a personal brand and grown an audience you become an expert in your field and as a result, people are happy to hear from you.
There are certain industries where establishing a strong personal brand image is a great ides, such as artists, authors, speakers and coaches. Building a strong personal brand will make it easier to market directly to your ideal customers. You can be personal and build immediate one-to-one connections.
OK, those are some of the pros, now let’s look at some cons.
CONS TO BEING A PERSONAL BRAND
Your Name Won’t Describe What You Do
It’s hard for people to instantly know who you are and what you do. So, it’s important to have either a strong tag line or be intentional with your social media marketing ensuring a strong brand message runs through your core content.
You’ll want to make sure that your messaging is crystal clear and is in alignment with who are and what you do. Clarity is key.
Harder To Sell A Personal Brand
I appreciate that if you’re at the beginning of your online business journey then you’re probably not thinking about selling.
But, if you have an inkling, even at this early stage, that you may wish to sell your business down the line then opting for a business brand might be a better option.
Alright, we’ve covered some basic facts about having a personal brand so let’s look at what having a business brand might look like -
First off, let’s get clear on what it is…
What’s A Business Brand?
A business brand takes a little longer to set up compared to a personal brand because rather than just using your name you need to call on creative inspiration and think of a name. Your business will be the focus point rather than the person behind it.
The name also needs to feel right and consist of meaningful words, which can be challenging. But the hard work might be worth it - let’s look at the pros.
PROS TO BEING A BUSINESS BRAND
Requires a long term vision for your business
Because a Business Brand spans beyond just your name and tagline you need to spend a little more time thinking about the long term goals for your business. This is a good thing because you’ll have a long term idea of what the future may look like.
After you’ve established your ideal customers (something a personal brand should do too), you’ll want to get crystal clear on your products and services and your why (your reason for existing) because changing your mind down the line may not be easy.
But like I said having a long term view of your business sets you up for a long-term success mindset rather than an “overnight success” approach. Be the tortoise, not the hare.
What You Do And Who You Are Is Clear
From the moment you decide on your business name and have a recognisable tagline you’ll be in a strong position to reach your ideal clients because marketing to an audience looking for your service will be easier.
You Can Sell Your Business With Ease
If you're considering selling your business in the future then a Business Brand should be easier to sell than a personal brand.
Every business has a life cycle, much like us, as human beings.
One day you might want to try something new or retire or re-locate and that’s when the idea of selling might appeal to you.
A personal brand is tied to an individual and the value of the company depreciates if that person is no longer there.
Alright, let’s look at some Cons -
CONS TO BUILDING A BUSINESS BRAND
It’s Harder To Start
It might take a little longer to start because at the same time as trying to get clear on your ideal customers, your products and your services, you’ll also be brainstorming potential names for your business. That’s a lot.
Unlike with a personal brand where you can pivot if your interests change, this is less doable with a business brand. If you get a few years down the road and decide you want to offer something different and you've established a loyal core audience that doesn’t fit your new business idea then you may need to consider starting a new company.
OK, so there you have it the Difference Between A Personal Brand And A Business Brand.
But there’s something else we should look at quickly before we wrap up -
THE SWEET SPOT BETWEEN THE TWO
Here’s the thing, in my opinion, we’re all building a bit of a mash-up of both a personal brand and a business brand.
With tools such as email and social media marketing every one and every brand have the opportunity to share their knowledge, experience, products and services with the world with ease and for free.
I believe even if you have a business brand, your audience wants to see the person or people behind the logo, behind the name, products and services you offer.
People want to do business with people. So don’t hide behind your business - be approachable - be a person.
As modern online marketers, it’s important that we share content that spans beyond what we do and what we sell.
The added value and the deeper connections you build with your audience come from the things you share, which invites them into your world and makes them get to know you a little more personally.
This builds the desired, know, like and trust factor which every business needs.
When you do these things you’ll hit the sweet spot as an online business owner irrespective of whether you have a business brand or a personal brand.
Alright, online creators, that’s it for today.
And, hey, if you're looking for a little clarity on who your dream customers are so you can grow your business with the right people, then grab my freebie: Grow Your Business With Your Dream Customers . It will help you get clear and make progress.
Reach out if you have any questions.
Love Nat x