by: Joel Reyes
Branding yourself keeps you current in your chosen field, opens doors for you, and creates a lasting impression on clients. By developing your own brand, you’ll have control over people’s initial perception. If you don’t brand yourself, someone else will, and the outcome might not be in your favor.
Relatively speaking, a strong brand influences its target audience and works overtime to engage those who may not have been targeted at all. A successful brand self-promotes, stimulates a unique experience, breathes loyalty, and offers consistency in the quality of the service it offers.
Brands are also used as a way to connect on a universal level. Here are a few reasons on why branding yourself is important.
You’ll be an Expert in Your Field
Not everyone knows who you are, and since that means they probably have no idea what you do and how good you do it, it’s vital for you to give your skills a bit of recognition.
Branding yourself isn’t entirely about who you are as an individual, but mostly about what kind of services and goods you can offer.
A client will usually choose someone they’ve previously heard of to work on their latest project and if you didn’t leave an impression that shows you’re quite the guru in your field, you’re straight out of luck.
It would be much of an inconvenience if a client knew who you were, but had no idea about the quality of services you offered. They’d have nothing in order to set you apart from the rest, and mediocrity will follow you.
Breaking free from this mold means that you have to brand your services.
Become an Asset
Having an asset that’s unique and commands respect is a good investment, especially if you’re a freelance designer. By branding yourself, you become the asset and the product you market is your set of skills or services. You’re your own unique product and no one can take that away from you.
Structuring yourself to become the asset will add value to not only your business, but also your skills and experience. When you’re the asset, your business revolves around you and therefore you’re irreplaceable.
You will be recognized for who you are and most importantly, what you do.
Be a Memorable Force
When companies annoyingly repeat TV and radio commercials, they aren’t trying to sell you the product at that instant, they do it so that the first thing you remember when you go to a department store is their brand. It doesn’t matter what line of product you choose, as long as you go with their brand.
Same concept when it comes to branding yourself. If your brand can successfully reach out and influence potential clients when they start up their browser or need a specific project to be worked on, your brand is the first thing that pops into their minds. Having a catchy name for your freelance business that’s easy to remember is a plus. For example, when you think about quality browsers with customizable elements, who do you think of? For me, it’s Firefox. The name and image behind the brand is simply compelling.
Stand Above the Rest
What defines a brand is the services or products behind it. For example, who would WordPress be without its content management services? Just a catchy name and nothing more.
Creating a brand that stands out requires you to develop an image that is consistent with what your brand has to offer. The image you choose to represent your brand should be simple, straightforward, and convey what you or your business does. The colors you choose should provoke interest, and you should use color theory to make your logo creative and unique.
Build Trust and Recognition
Branding yourself allows you to easily engage with your clients and build trust. Once your clients begin to trust you, they’ll never forget what you have to offer. Out of building trust comes recognition. Odds are if a client trusts you, then they won’t hesitate to refer their contacts to you. Over time, this evolves into a strong relationship, which in return turns your clients into loyal customers.
Easier to Find You
A brand that’s easy to remember is easier to find. If your brand has unique properties and succeeds in attracting attention, then you’ll have a much better chance of having potential clients hear about you and easily find you as well.
For example, Apple is a strong brand that has attracted new customers by breaking standards and reaching higher levels of innovation. If you type the word “Apple” in Google, the first thing that comes up is Apple.com, not the definition or content on the actual fruit. That’s a remarkable accomplishment. The Apple brand has become a staple in its own niche, and it will always be easy to find. You should apply these same principles, offer good services, break a few standards, create a unique representation, and your brand will flourish.
How Are You Branding Yourself?
What are ways to establish a self-brand? Who are good examples of self-branding? Share your thoughts and opinion on this subject in the comments.