When you are working for yourself, you’re also the one who’s doing the marketing part and who’s responsible for building a name for yourself. These are key components to growing your business, finding new clients and becoming known in your niche.
So apart from the quality work you produce on a consistent basis, there are other things you should be doing daily. When combined, they form your personal brand – who you are in the eyes of every potential client, reader, user, or else.
Before anything else, however, you should be thinking of yourself as a brand. Companies or individuals that don’t take that seriously don’t succeed in the long-term.
Branding is a form of art. It’s about authenticity – being yourself and genuine, and differentiation – you are unique and need to find a way to show that so that people can remember you and you can stand out from the crowd.
So, here are some practical tips on how to create your brand and improve it over time:
1. Have a website.
No matter what services or products you’re offering, you need a website and a blog on it.
Why? Because that will be your home online, the place where you’ll tell people to find you, the one platform you’ll have full control over.
The best way is to get a self-hosted WordPress site. You can use your own name for the domain, but it can also be something original related to your area of expertise if you’re going to focus more on producing practical content for the blog.
And here’s why you do need a blog that’s updated frequently and taken care of:
- the Internet today is all about valuable content;
- you’ll share evergreen content – tips, life lessons, your own experience, your opinion on current events in your field, or else;
- that’s what you’ll be sharing on social media all the time too;
- Google ranks long-form, optimized content higher compared to sites that just have a few pages. So people can discover you through the phrases they type when they open their browser;
- it’s a way to be seen as an expert in your area. At some point you may become the go-to guy for news, motivation, practical tips, etc;
- you’re giving away value, and that always pays off. You’ll be doing this for free and people will appreciate that;
- you’ll improve your writing skills – writing is a powerful skill these days and there’s no better way to master it than to practice.
2. Add your story to every element of your brand.
Start with the About page on your site. Dedicate it a whole weekend if you have to, to see what others in your niche are doing with their pages on their websites.
Make sure you tell your story in an engaging way and let people know what to expect from you. Update it frequently.
Then, there’s your logo, the colors you’ll use, the font, and the overall design of your site. What do you want all this to say about you?
Some people choose more aggressive color schemes, others stick with minimalism and want the content to be seen first.
It all depends on your overall strategy (which you should think through very carefully), how you want to be seen by people, and your personality.
3. Be professional.
Hire a developer if you have to so that the site can look perfect. A web designer can then take care of your logo and the other visual elements.
What’s more, take professional photos and add them to your About page, homepage, and all accounts across the Internet.
4. Build your portfolio.
Last but not least, gather testimonials from previous clients and put these on a visible place on your website.
If you’re a beginner, do this on the side first until your build a client base. Do work for free if you have to. This will help you gain fans and they will recommend you to other clients that will actually pay. What’s more, you’ll be building your portfolio and that’s one of the most important tools a freelancer needs.
So that’s how you create a personal brand for yourself and your home based business.
What will you start with today?