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THE ENTREPRENEUR'S PERSONAL BRAND

In the initial phases of your project, the only palpable reality is yourself as the entrepreneur. Your image, your conviction and enthusiasm, your track record and expertise and your communication skills will determine whether the desired goal is achieved. When we talk about the entrepreneur's personal brand we refer to a set of characteristics that characterise the entrepreneur and by which he/she will be recognised by others..

Success in entrepreneurship is the success of the entrepreneur and vice versa. When someone decides to take on a business initiative, they are conditioning their success on what the entrepreneur is capable of transmitting about themselves to those who will contribute with their support to the take-off of the future business: investors, financiers, partners, clients, collaborators, suppliers, prescribers, etc. 

Your personal brand is made up of four essential aspects that you must create: 

  • Denomination (brand name) 
  • its graphic expression (logo), 
  • notoriety, (How many people know about it) and the 
  • positioning (Perception: What attributes do they relate it to). 

Usually the name of the personal brand is the entrepreneur's first and last name(s). Sometimes you can resort to pseudonyms, especially if you have a very common name or there is already someone competing in your sector with the same name. In any case, you should think about your projection on social networks, no more than 15 characters if you are going to use Twitter, and also about your domain. 

With regard to brand awareness, think about your customer segment and the target groups you will address throughout the entrepreneurial process. Normally you will not need mass audiences but rather segmented and classified by nature: financiers, customers, prescribers, media, suppliers, distribution channels. In principle, your audiences are not massive, so obtaining a certain brand awareness will not be difficult. The entrepreneur's personal brand must be flexible and useful to any kind of interlocutor.

We want to draw your attention to the fact that perceptions are inevitable. No one can avoid forming opinions about everything we come into contact with. This inevitability also affects people and, as you can understand, it is very dangerous because it does not depend on you. Many times we may like or dislike someone without knowing why, or we may form opinions about someone without having sufficient elements of judgement. That is why it is so important that you take care of that first impression. In our culture we find it very difficult to review opinions. Managing a personal brand involves getting perceptions to identify with those attributes or traits that we want people to recognise in us.

Let's see what steps we need to take to build a strong personal brand:

Focus inward and identify your differences:

Any process of building an entrepreneur's personal brand starts with a sincere introspection that helps us to define who we are and what we can offer in a differentiated way. Therefore, it is not about pretending something that has nothing to do with you. Artificial brands, like lies, have short legs, especially if it is a personal brand.

Let us define the specific fields that are associated with our identity, our experience, knowledge and aspirations. We should focus on one or two themes that will identify us in the future. They should be coherent with each other, they should be meaningful to the people we are addressing and they should differentiate us from others.

Set your objectives and design your strategy to achieve them.

It is essential that you are clear about what you want to achieve with your venture. Your personal brand is going to be a tool for achieving your objective, so you must define how you intend it to be useful to you. This purpose must be the axis around which your actions revolve.

If you are clear about who your target audience is, their profiles, the type of problem you are solving, you need to define what message you want to convey to them and in what tone you are going to convey it. This is especially important when it comes to preparing the different pitches you are going to use in front of different interlocutors.

All the information you have about your potential market will be especially useful when it comes to establishing your being, your way of being in the world, your way of undertaking and proceeding to achieve your goals. This is what your personal branding is all about. A particularly useful tool is the use of story telling in which you tell who you are and what your background is. This will help you connect with the people you need and who share your goals or can help you achieve them.  

Your objectives may be to get investors, to get leads, to acquire new skills or knowledge, to make yourself known in your sector. 

Your strategies can consist of making yourself known at events such as trade fairs, sectoral conferences, publishing a blog, running specific courses, participating in forums of interest, demonstrating your authority in a specific field, creating professional synergies, etc.

Action plan to create your personal brand.

Action plans are the embodiment of strategies. It is about planning all the actions that we are going to carry out.

This is the time to plan the concrete actions to be carried out according to a timetable, what tools you will use and how you will measure the results:

  • Creation of a blog and publication calendar.
  • Define other blogs to follow.
  • Sign up for specific training actions.
  • Calendar of events you will attend.
  • Presentation of the project to financial institutions, etc.
  • Giving lectures, etc.

Innovation is related to differentiation from the competition, directly or indirectly. You must ask yourself how things are being done, analyse the mechanisms and strategies that work and how to do it just as well but innovate to differentiate yourself.

Give visibility to your actions:

Social networks, as well as blogs or websites are nowadays essential tools to disseminate practically anything, and they certainly play an essential role in the creation of a personal brand. But their use has to be regular, practically daily and following a well-defined and coordinated strategy among all the media you use.

Perseverance

Creating a personal brand is not something that is achieved quickly. As we have already mentioned, it requires perseverance and patience, as results take time. Good planning is necessary.

In the following link you can find more information about the brand concept: 

http://mentorday.es/wikitips/posicionamiento-mercado-marca-producto/

To learn more about Personal Branding:

https://blog.interdominios.com/10-guias-gratuitas-para-desarrollar-tu-marca-personal/

https://sebastianpendino.com/ejemplos-de-marca-personal/

Free tools to choose your brand: 

  • To search and buy your domain name: NameCheap.com.
  • For a comprehensive search you can use this free tool to search for domains and usernames available on social networks: DomainTyper
  • To generate user names free for Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and others, this is a good online tool: SpinXo.com.

Now that you have learned all about this Tip, you should be able to answer these questions:

  1. What have you already worked on in your personal branding so far? 
  2. Describe the attributes that you think could underpin your positioning?

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