It seems to be a persistent and agonizing struggle.
And it’s probably the number one question I get asked over and over again…
Do I brand myself or my business?
And my answer is always…it depends.
Much of this answer depends on the goals you have for your business and lifestyle. What’s the end goal for this entrepreneurial journey you are on?
And it’s ok if you can’t answer that right at this moment…it’s also ok if that answer changes over time (in fact I can almost guarantee it will).
Here are some guidelines when making your decision (and my very valuable 2 cents 😉 )
When you brand yourself, you become a Personal Brand.
Everything is driven by you.
In other words, the business would not exist without your skills, talents, gifts, and of course, your personality.
Everything in the business comes from you…it is in essence, your life’s work.
On the other hand
Branding a business is driven by the fact that it exists outside of you. You may have initially created it, but the business can be a Brand in and of itself; it doesn’t need you to “be” the Brand. It is an entity unto itself.
An example of this would be Sir Richard Branson.
So…now it’s time for my extremely wise and valuable 2 cents 😉
You should always have a Personal Brand as an entrepreneur.
Regardless of your goals for your work and business, it all started with you.
People remember people, not a pretty website or company name.
People are what create the emotional connections and the feelings associated with a Brand.
Let’s go back to our Branson/Virgin example. While it’s true that Virgin would exist without Sir Richard, it is the very essence of his personality and archetype (he is a Seeker in case you are wondering) that makes Virgin the company it is. It embodies his spirit and values…and that creates those intangible emotional connections that create raving fans, tight communities, and undying brand loyalty.
Get known for what you stand for and for what you stand against.
Show what you value and what pisses you off
Show what you believe about the work you do and service those who it can help.
Start where you are and brand for where you want to go.
You want to start a business and brand it…go for it
Consider that business a sub or child brand under your Personal Brand.
Be visible as the owner of that business brand.
Businesses can come and go, be bought and sold, succeed and fail, but there will never, ever be another you.
Ready to learn more?
Join me and my colleague Jennifer Crego for a live training on how to craft a Brand that impacts, influences, inspires…and makes you money without sacrificing your integrity (or sanity).