Brand with the Future in Mind
If you have plans to scale your business, it’s a good idea to think about developing your brand early. When deciding between business or personal branding, be forward-thinking. If your personality or knowledge are what customers are buying, then a personal brand may be more appropriate. Whichever you choose, keep the future in mind to set yourself and your business up for longevity.
Branding Yourself vs. Your Small Business
Think you’re clear regarding the difference of branding yourself vs. branding your business? Branding is a crucial aspect in developing a successful business. Whether you brand only your small business or you brand yourself (or both) depends exactly on what type of business you have and who your target audience is. But, you will find several serious downsides to being focused on branding yourself rather than the business unless all the company is you.
If YOU are the business, meaning much of your income source has been because of being a public figure of some sort or other — such as a speaker, an actor, an author, a life coach, or any position that has to have your voice and face to be in the picture and the business will end if you die or quit, then you do want to brand yourself. Aside from that small niche, you really want to brand your business instead of yourself.
Take some time to decide if your business might be sold if you die, or decide to sell and retire. In any other case, then you want to be branding yourself together with your business. If you can sell or pass on your small business to others, then concentrate on branding the company only as a separate entity from yourself. Granted, a lot of people do both especially those who have both a business that they could sell, and also engage in public speaking, writing, teaching and coaching. So, sometimes it isn’t an either or proposition but it is imperative that you look at your business to be sure that you are not neglecting an important possibility to brand your business outside of yourself. This ensures longevity past your lifetime or career.
Branding Your Small Business
Different than just branding yourself, branding your small business properly offers the message you intend to deliver, provides credibility, motivates the suitable buyers, and creates loyalty among customers.
But it also creates value outside the current state of your products and offerings. It can also create value when you’re gone. Maybe you are gone through death or simply because you arrange to sell the business and move on to other opportunities. Among the most wealthy people today they launched a business, then sold in the height of its popularity to earn millions. These folks were able to do that because the business had a brand separate from themselves which enabled them to sell to someone else who could continue the company without them.
Therefore if you now have a product or service based business that someone else could easily run without you, brand the business. For those who have a product that IS you, branding yourself is probably the route to take. But, the greatest thing to do is find a way to do both. Find a way to separate the parts of the business that happen to be just you, and the parts of the business that someone else could do should you sell it directly to them or hire them to do it.
It may be a difficult decision for many of us. We treat our businesses like extensions of ourselves and surely they can be, but when you are looking at the future value of your business, branding the company separate from branding yourself is essential for longevity.