If you’re in the process of developing your personal brand for the first time or maybe giving it a little bit of a rebrand, you’ve probably looked through more than enough color schemes, logo designs, and website themes for more than one lifetime. That’s just overwhelming. Well, today I’m excited to talk to you about the whole visual element of building our personal brands.
I had a great chat with Philip VanDusen, visual branding guru and brilliant member of the Youpreneur community, on the visual element of personal branding.
In fact, your reputation depends on visual branding. Visual elements are probably more important in the online world than they are in any other medium because people just make up their mind so darn quickly online.If you are a personal brand #entrepreneur than your reputation depends on visual branding. Visual elements are more important in the online world than on any other medium because people make up their mind so quickly. #Youpreneur Click To Tweet
I don’t know about you, but when I surf the internet, and I look at websites from coaches, consultants, authors, and speakers, there are some bloody horrible looking websites out there and I kind of feel like we need to try and fix this.
1. Enter the Branding Ecosystem
Entrepreneurs and businesses have to look at branding as an ecosystem. It’s not just a logo. You have to take a much broader view of all of the brand touchpoints that you as an entrepreneur are going to have control and influence over. That is everything from your logo to color to texture to photography style to layout. There are so many different aspects of branding that have to sing the same song to create a unified picture of whatever your brand is. Designing that with as much forethought as you can is really important because otherwise, it can come across very choppy.
When we talk about designing a personal brand, it’s not always about actual visual. It can be content. It can be the point of view of your content. It could be who you’re serving as your audience. When you talk about strategic branding, this is brand strategy and business strategy very deeply intertwined.
You’ve got to have the same message across all of your online platforms if you want to have any kind of real stickiness in people’s brains.
2. Know Your End
As you design a personal brand, you have to set out a strategy for yourself. Who’s your end? Most of the smart brands are completely customer-centric. They ask, what is the customer insight that’s going to differentiate us from our competition? How do our customers want to be communicated with? What is the visual language that makes them comfortable?
A lot of people can build a brand around ‘I like blue’ or ‘I like this particular photo style.’ To a certain extent, you have to think all of that through from the eyes of your consumer, and that’s a very different mindset to approach things with.
Having a strategy around what you want your brand to say is what will dictate what choices you will make across your branding. What happens is people will build things piece-by-piece. They’ll build a website that will look great, but then suddenly, they’ll go on Snapchat, or they’ll go on Twitter or Facebook, and they won’t take that into consideration and say, “How should I be communicating to my customer and what is going to be attractive to them?”
3. Show Your Face
Whenever someone is a personal brand, and they’re trying to cultivate a cult of personality to an extent, they need to become ever-present visually to their audience. You do that by using consistent photography that you use across your brand touchpoints.
If you’re a personal brand, don’t hide behind your logo or tagline all the time. Get your face out there and be seen as the person behind the brand.
4. Double Your Prices
Pricing your personal brand is customer-centric yet again. You must ask yourself, who is my customer-base? Are they people who have just gotten out of college and can’t afford to pay their student loan or do they want to learn how to perform a little bit better at their job can lay down $300 or $500 for a personalized experience?
There are two sides to it. One is your customer, and what they can afford and the other is your brand perception. Luxury brands are about the price perception and the value of a brand. You can’t build things like that overnight.
My whole take here is that particularly in the consultant-author-speaker-type world, we are vastly undercharging for our wares, services, and time. I see that across the board. If you are selling something that is going to take a little bit more commitment, people are going to expect a high-quality product out of it. If you’re supplying that, you shouldn’t feel bad charging premium for it.
We’ve seen it inside of the community where people have said, “Chris told me I should double my price and I did, and I sold 30% more last month.” If you’re charging a minimal amount for anything where you’re trading time for money, and you’re becoming overwhelmed with not having enough time to grow your business because you’re on coaching calls all the time, double your cost. You’ll lose half of your clients, but you’ll make the same amount of money, and you’ll have more time to work on the business.