We all have talents and skills that other people need…whether they know it or not. Additionally, the skills we each possess are unique to the person who possesses them. “When you are uniquely yourself, your brand has no competition.”
They key to taking your creative expertise, your unique value proposition, and creating a successful business with it is bottling up (branding and packaging) your talent in order to be able to charge what you’re worth and attract those who need your services.
This is by far the trickiest part!
Entrepreneur Magazine just posted on Facebook that the actions you take to market your intellectual capital (creative expertise) requires a customized and calculated approach that differs from the standard business model. And I couldn’t agree more! When your intellectual property is your golden ticket to business success, it’s critical to take the appropriate steps to package, promote and sell brand YOU.
Here are the critical steps from Entrepreneur Magazine. The full article can be read here.
Seek out professionals in your industry and note what they are doing, how they’re doing it and most importantly, what you can offer that is different. What does this industry need right now? What is unique about my approach that’s seldom done? Put your original spin on a creative role.
I can’t stress the importance of personal branding! How you present yourself online and offline will determine the type of clients you attract and their perceived quality of your services. Once you’ve got professional photos (beyond just a headshot), a logo, business cards and of course, a professional website, start building your social media channels. This is where I step in to create professional, sophisticated brands for my clients.
Fill your website/blog and social media platforms with content. You are an expert at what you do so now is the time to prove it! In a saturated market, nothing will legitimize your creative consultancy business better than your actual work. This can be in the form of your portfolio, examples of past work, testimonials from past and current clients and your own knowledge. Give away value to give potential clients a taste of what you have to offer.
Now that you’ve defined your personal brand and hopefully carved out a creative and unique niche within your industry that others are filling (your differentiating benefit), it’s time to dig deep and plan. Start by writing down a list of desirable companies, agencies and clients you’d like to work with that are in line with your offering. If you haven’t done so already, write out your goals and intentions which may also include examining elements about yourself/your business that you need to change. This tool kit will get you started! This could include hiring a branding or business coach to mentor you and ensure growth.
Always start with your own personal connections such as friends, family and colleagues. Then make it a point to connect to like-minded individuals who have similar goals, dreams and aspirations. A simple announcement via a status update and email directing your friends and acquaintances to your new business will lay the foundations of your following. Start to connect with those doing what you want to do and the heavy hitters within your industry. Think collaboration versus competition. Chances are your relationship with them will be mutually beneficial…rise together!
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