How to Brand Yourself Before You Get Branded

Who you are as a person is an integral part of your brand…be proactive. Ensure others are presented with the most accurate and authentic image of who you really are.

Watch today’s video to learn how to brand yourself for success!

For more tips and exercises for building a fashion website check out
Creating Fashion Websites That Sell by Syama Meagher and Nicole Giordano: http://blog.scalingretail.com/product/creating-fashion-websites-that-sell-ebook/
Check out the Scaling Retail website for more business e-commerce and retail tips, reviews and more: http://www.scalingretail.com/

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Transcript:

Hi, I’m Syama Meagher, CEO of Scaling Retail. Today, I want to talk to you about branding yourself before you get branded. Now, as a small business owner, you might be thinking to yourself, “Well, who cares about me and why should I worry about that?” Well, it’s a big question to ask yourself. Mostly because as a small business owner, chances are you are leveraging transparency. You are leveraging the authenticity of maybe who you are and why your story is important. Also, maybe you’re showing behind the scenes of you as the founder or as the designer.

So those things become really important. Who you are becomes important. Unless, of course, you’ve chosen to totally, mutually exclusively, have your brand be totally separate from you, and have you exist separately. That is totally fine as well. So when it comes to really building your brand, one of the techniques a lot of brand owners are doing is adding a lot of themselves into their communication. So if you are managing your business and you are going to be doing all of these things, then it is important you start to think about how you brand yourself.

Now, branding can take on a whole lot of forms and meanings. For me, branding is everything from how you write an email to someone to your voicemail, and what you say on your voicemail, to how you pick up the phone when someone calls your business, to the tone of your voice. All of that is branding. Now, you might be saying to yourself, “Well, I’m certainly no celebrity, or I don’t really have the intention to do that. Is it so important?” The answer is yes. It’s extremely important.

Your customers are looking to understand your brand and every aspect of what it is you have to offer. So if you are on the table, then yes. You have to start honing up your Instagram profiles, making sure that if you do want to keep your private life separate, that that Instagram profile is a private platform. If you want it to be exposed to the public, then no. People are going to be following you. People want to know who you are. This is very important.

Now, how to craft that story? Well, aside from the little things that we’ve talked about, the major ways of crafting that story is really to figure out what your story is and how you’re going to syndicate and share that story. Are you an expert in your field? Do you have an entrepreneurial story that you want to share with people? Are you good at blogging? Are you good at video? What are the different platforms that you can use to share and syndicate that particular story?

Now, there are other ways of pushing out a story. You can’t simply make it and assume that people are going to come to it. But what you can do is start to sign up for websites like Help A Reporter Out, where you can start to see what are the different news media outlets that might be looking for someone like you to speak about what it’s like to own a fashion brand. You can also start to share your story on larger platforms. Get on a stage. Talk to people about the struggles of being an entrepreneur, maybe the struggles of a particular niche or type of entrepreneur that you are. Think about your brand and story.

Now, in the beginning stages, you might be wondering, “Well, what is it that I have to say? What makes my voice so important?” Your unique perspective and who you are as an individual has clearly brought you to the point where you own a business. Now, owning a business is not something everyone can do. Your particular story and passion, I guarantee, is unique and special to you. If it’s not, well then give me a call and we’ll make a story that is amazing and beautiful, and that is actually something you can rehearse and repeat. But at the end of the day, it’s got to be authentic. It’s really important that it’s something that feels really true and resonates with you.

Now, aside from speaking opportunities, you can obviously start writing vlogs, becoming a contributor to a variety of other blogs, and start to get the messaging out there about your brand. I would also suggest reaching out to other brands who are in your same space, becoming friends, understanding that while you’re both targeting the same demographic, you have your own unique positioning and product. That type of confidence that comes with that type of conversation really is what’s going to set you apart from other people who are not confident about their brands or aren’t willing to take a stand for what they believe in and what they’re doing.

Now, lastly, you might be wondering, “Well, is all of this really important, and what does it really lead up to?” Well, for those of you who are planning on growing your small fashion companies or going from a medium-sized business to a large business, you might be looking eventually for investments. You might be looking to hire people. You might be looking eventually for someone to come on board. They’re going to be wondering, “Well, who is this business owner? Why should I trust this person? What is it that they’re doing out there to really help support their brand and their vision?”

So you branding yourself is ultimately the gateway to helping your brand see goals and success come to fruition. At the same time, keep in mind, guys, when you’re an entrepreneur, which you all are, chances are your first business is not going to be your only business. By branding yourself, you open yourself up to more opportunities for success down the road on a personal level. You’ll then be able to find collaborations more easily, inspiration more easily, because people will be coming to you and engaging with you.

Have a lot of fun branding yourself. Take a look at your LinkedIn profiles. Make sure all of that is really well-articulated. Make sure all of your job descriptions are on there. Like a bunch of people’s content on LinkedIn. It’s becoming a great new platform for understanding your own brand and seeing how other people are branding themselves. Then, also be mindful of any of your other social media channels. Those things are always going to be a reflection on you, whether or not you want it to.

All right, guys. Thank you so much for listening. Have a fantastic day. Feel free to shoot me an email over at hello@scalingretail.com. Leave a comment below and, as usual, come find me, because I am where you are, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Thanks so much!

  • Theresa Campbell (Be Next Ente

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