Are you building an effective platform to consistently attract clients? In today’s episode, Anna looks at the 4th pillar of building a life outside of the 9 to 5, building an effective personal brand.
*Resources mentioned during the episode*
Outside of the 9 to 5 – Your practical guide to designing and building a profitable business that gives you freedom, flexibility and fulfilment. outsideofthe9to5.com
Welcome back to the fourth episode of our mini-podcast series. And thanks for sticking with me, it’s the first time I’ve done one of these series. So I hope you’re enjoying it short and sweet episodes, but I’m coming at you every day this week instead of just the weekly episode. So hopefully you’re enjoying following along, whether you’re listening live, or perhaps you’re binge listening, because you’ve discovered this later in the year as well. So we’re doing the mini podcast series to celebrate the launch of the book outside the nine to five, it’s your practical guide to designing and building a profitable business that gives you freedom, flexibility, and fulfillment. And walking you through the five sections of the book, which corresponds to the five pillars of building that business outside the nine to five, Monday, first episode, we looked at identifying your personal definition of success. Tuesday, pillar two cultivating confidence and resilience. Wednesday, pillar three, choosing the right business model.
And today is pillar for building an effective personal brand. Now, this is one of my favorites, partly because as you may know, if you know me, I come from a branding and marketing background.
So this is sort of my go to this is my professional education, if you will, originally in my corporate times. However, as you may also realize, when you start this yourself, it’s very different to market yourself than it is to market a product, right an external product on behalf of a different company. So Seth Godin, a bit of a guru in the marketing world, said that a brand is the set of expectations and memories, stories and relationships that taken together account for a consumers decision to choose one product or service over another. And I’d actually argue that personal brand is the same thing, when it comes to the type of business that we’re building here, right? So you’re a solopreneur, an expert, freelancer, coach, consultant, etc. So your personal brand is really how other people see you. It’s what they expect from you, when they were cool if they’ve seen you online, or they read your book, you know, had various interactions with you, whether online or offline. And it’s the reason why Hopefully, they’re going to choose to work with you, and not just for somebody else. And I know, it can feel a bit icky as we say, to think of yourself as a brand.
But the thing is that you have one, whether you want to or not. So the reality is that either people are talking about you, or perhaps they’re not talking about you, which is arguably worse. In some cases, people have an impression of you whether you do something about it or not. Right. So it’s a case of having to decide, are you going to leave it up to trance to random chance, basically? Or are you going to choose to shape it with a bit more intention, so that you actually craft a brand that’s going to support you support you in the business that you’re building? So speaking from my own experience, having a strong personal brand, has meant that people can come to me because they’ve heard me on a podcast or this podcast, right? Hello, do you come and say hello. And they’ve seen me on a video, they’ve attended a workshop, they’ve read one of my books, hopefully, you’ve got the book outside of the nine to five from Amazon by now. Now, so they already see me as bringing value. And there’s already that element of trust and respect before they even started working with me. Selfishly, I have to say that makes my life a whole lot easier. Because by the time they get on the phone with me, they already know that they want to work with me, they just need that final confirmation, the final reassurance that yes, they’re making the right decision, and also perhaps some guidance on which is the specific program, that’s going to be the best option for them.
So an effective personal brand elevates you, you become more than just a commodity, right?
You’re just you’re not just an anonymous entity on a list of comparable products, your your something special, there’s there’s a reason why people are being pulled towards working with you. And funnily enough, I want to share that. And you know, in the years that I’ve been coaching, I’ve had two incidents actually possibly a third now since I’ve written the book, but we’re a prospects that a really long list of coaches like 12, or 13, they’ve been considering. And I’m just one of many options. So here’s the thing I know, with humility that I have, that if someone is comparing me in an Excel sheet, where they’re listing pros and cons and ticking boxes, and so on, it’s highly unlikely that they’ll choose me. So I’d actually go so far as it’s, you know, it’s highly unlikely that I’ll choose anybody on that list, because it’s more likely that they’re going to feel overwhelmed, they’re going to get decision fatigue, they’ll end up postponing the coaching to another time or they’ll choose someone based on that kind of checkbox comparison, they’ll end up not feeling particularly happy about it, because it’s not a very intuitive decision. And they’ll regret it and they might be put off coaching, right. So in these cases, I definitely wasn’t surprised when neither of those two people with a list of 1213 people chose to work with me. But you know, your personal brand is going to distinguish you from all those other competitors, right? Because by definition, you’re unique. You’re one of a kind, your story, your personal journey, your experience.
All of these things together make you and your value completely unique and incomparable to anyone else.
So some would even say they don’t even have any competitors at all, because your personal brand is so specific and distinctive. I think that’s perhaps being a bit disingenuous, but it’s certainly true that you can position yourself in a very unique way. So your personal brand, by the way also helps you to connect with potential clients because you’re telling stories, you’re being relatable. You’re building that trust. And by the way, you can choose how vulnerable you want to be Know how much you want to share. But I would say that in my experience, it’s your personal posts and you know admitting your mistakes and things that’s going to get the most engagement in your content. And then final reason why your personal brand is so important is that it’s going to live above and beyond any specific business. So when I first left my corporate job, I started my crocus communications, marketing consultancy. And today that businesses officially not existing anymore. So if I pulled all my marketing endeavors into that company, hidden behind that company name, I would have had to start again from scratch when that business ended. But luckily, Anna Lundberg lives on and prospers. So if you’re now convinced that a personal brand is important, and at least an inevitable part of your business, then we can start looking at pillar four, which is building your personal brand. Now, the first step here is to come up with your overall headline, it’s almost like an elevator pitch. And I know again, it feels a bit elevator pitch, but you know, it’s just having that headline that’s going to appear on your website, homepage, social media, bios, and so on.
So step one is coming up with a viral headline. Step two, though, is bringing that headline to life. In developing your content strategy, it’s the topics, we’re going to talk about the formats, the channels, and so on, right? Then what’s really important is actually going to be boosting your credibility, especially if you’re moving into a new space. And so we’ll look at how you can put yourself forward as a credible expert, even in a new area where you perhaps feel you don’t have the qualifications and so on that that you had in your previous life. And then finally, we’re looking at maximizing visibility. And this is all about amplifying the content you’re creating, giving a platform so that new people actually see you. And they come into that ecosystem that you’ve envisioned, basically, for you and your business. Because if you’re not getting in front of new people every week, you’re just not going to be growing your business.
So that’s built pillar for building an effective personal brand. So to recap on the four steps, coming up with a strong headline, creating your content strategy, boosting your credibility, and maximizing your visibility. So this is a really important one. Again, I’m pretty passionate about this one. But it’s a fun one as well. So I hope you’re excited to dig into this one. We’ll be back tomorrow for the final pillar, designing flexible work life integration. But the meantime, again, I know a broken record. But that’s what it’s all about this week, you can get outside of the nine to five, search outside the nine to five or Anna Lundberg, if you can spell my Swedish name on your local Amazon, you can get the paperback again, it’s at a discounted price. It doesn’t look discounted, by the way, because it won’t let me discount paperback but I was simply put it a half the price so grab it now. And then after this promotional period, we’ll get it back up to full price. And you can also preorder the Kindle if you’re listening live and you’ll be able to buy the Kindle very soon if you’re listening a bit later. So thank you so much. Do let me know if you’ve grabbed the book. And of course I’d very much welcome a review on Amazon as well. Thanks so much and I’ll see you back here tomorrow for the final episode. Bye for now.
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