Consumers Want Video Content. Why Not Use It to Strengthen Your Personal Brand?

Consumers Want Video Content. Why Not Use It to Strengthen Your Personal Brand?

June
21, 2021

6 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Rumor has it that personal branding is set to transform marketing in 2021, but not in the way you might think. Today, the concept is more focused on humanizing business — and those behind the business. By establishing and strengthening a founder’s personal brand, there’s an opportunity to put a face and personality to a larger brand’s name. It can also help establish a sense of integrity or expertise when that founder becomes a credible spokesperson who can highlight the company’s progress and long-term victories.Email newsletter Morning Brew has always done a great job at this. Its co-founders, Alex Lieberman and Austin Rief, are especially present on social media, Twitter in particular. The two also encourage their employees to do the same, which really elevates the sense of thought leadership coming out of the brand as a whole. With each subsequent post, they continue to weave a stronger and stronger identity that helps the brand stand out and elevate the company above the competition.But as you move from text to video as a way of personal branding, you take your efforts to yet another level. This allows for even more personality to be married to a brand, as you’re leveraging a more engaging medium — people are simply less likely to scroll on by. Video also has a way of feeling more authentic and genuine than a 280-character tweet, which can be important. A study from Stackla found that 90% of customers mentioned authenticity as a deciding factor when it comes to which brands to support. Besides, according to Social Media Week, 78% of consumers report watching online videos each week, with 54% wanting more content in general. The audience is there, so why not leverage the demand?Related: Personal Branding: The Key to Success in the Digital AgeApproaching video content wiselyThe question, then, is this: How exactly do you create video content that moves your personal brand (and company brand) in the right direction? The following are often the best places to start. 1. Share your brand storyThe reasons people don’t use video range from lack of time to little clarity surrounding the return on investment. But among non-video marketers, one of the more common reasons is not knowing where to start — and that’s where your brand story will come in handy. It’s a logical entry point for viewers.Put some thought into your personal brand as you begin to build out a narrative. If you’re skilled at a particular craft or field, for example, this might be a good starting point. Perhaps your business fits within a certain niche. This, too, provides a natural means for engaging with an audience.As your brand story begins to take shape, consider storyboarding your thoughts and ideas. Think about which settings would best support your narrative and add interest. What sorts of angles should you use? Close-ups? Wide shots? Take your graphics or lighting needs into consideration. Plan out every aspect of the shoot to connect with an audience.Related: How to Build a Brand Story That Buyers Emotionally Connect With2. Get used to being on cameraThe sole way to get comfortable on camera is to practice being in front of the camera, and the more you practice, the more natural it will feel. Given enough practice, authenticity will set in and come across to your viewers. Start off by filming a few videos, and make sure you’ve prepared some talking points.Keep it casual and conversational by trying to imagine that you’re actually talking to an audience (people rarely enjoy canned speeches). Even if it’s an audience of one, it’ll help make the interaction feel a bit more natural. And consider your body language during the shoot. According to SOAP Presentations, effective presentations are 55% nonverbal communication.After you’ve got a few in the can, review them. If you feel comfortable, share those files with a friend or two to gather a little feedback. Then, step in front of the camera again, keeping any tips or advice in the back of your mind.3. Focus on authenticityOne of the key elements of building a personal brand is that it’s, well, personal. It allows people to catch a glimpse into who you are as an individual. Keeping your content genuine and authentic can be effective in conveying this. Share pieces of your actual life — not curated versions that often ring hollow. If it’s not genuine, the content doesn’t matter.Gary Vaynerchuk has become an internet personality largely due to his authenticity on screen. He talks to the camera as if he’s talking to friends and rarely (if ever) censors what he’s saying. Even his very first video, which had no budget whatsoever, comes across as distinctly genuine, and he builds his personal narrative from there.Related: Why Authenticity Is a Key Ingredient to Entrepreneurial Success, and How to Make Sure You Have It4. Try going liveAlthough going live might feel like high stakes, livestreaming does provide the opportunity to engage with your audience in real time. It can also make your content feel less rehearsed, giving a sense of immediate gratification and allowing you to really connect with viewers in a different way.Just make sure to do a trial run or two prior to the shoot, map out the details to ensure everything goes smoothly and consider the purpose of going live. Don’t do it just to do it. Consider why you’re employing this tactic. Is it to educate or improve sales? Above all else, don’t set it and forget it. Repurpose the content for other platforms.Glennon Doyle has been using livestreams to grow her personal brand for a while now. It started as the result of the pandemic, as she had to cancel tons of book appearances. But now, it has grown into almost a daily experience with her morning meetings on Facebook and Instagram. She shares funny and emotional stories, highlighting the difficulties of parenting and maintaining a relationship during the pandemic. The result? She’s now a New York Times bestseller, and her new podcast topped the Apple Podcasts charts before it was officially released.For personal branding purposes, it’s really important to put a face behind your brand, insert some personality and come off as a genuine, authentic person. That’s the foundation for creating great video content. Once you’ve mastered the above areas, you should be moving in the right direction.

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5 Mistakes Franchisees Make When Looking for Business Real Estate

5 Mistakes Franchisees Make When Looking for Business Real Estate

Avoid these common mistakes to ensure your next real-estate decision is the right one.

Free Book Preview:
Brand Renegades

Discover how two entrepreneurs used unconventional business strategies to turn their startup into a multimillion-dollar company.

June
21, 2021

6 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

As an owner of a franchise, one of the biggest decisions you have to make is finding the right real estate for your businesses. Successful franchisees are constantly looking for ways to scale and obtain new locations. Everyone has heard the cliché — location, location, location as it pertains to property. It’s said that these are the three most important factors when it comes to purchasing real estate. The truth is that the location of your business is just one of the many factors a franchise owner should consider when looking for real estate. That being said, the location of your business is important, so be sure not to overlook these common mistakes franchisees encounter when looking for that perfect piece of real estate.1. History can repeat itselfThe history of a location can be very telling and extremely helpful in choosing real estate. For example, if you are looking for a new location for your pizza shop and you come across a piece of real estate that appears to be a great location for your business, be sure to research the history of what was there before. You may find that even though the area appears to be perfect, there were five other pizza shops in that same location that failed. That information doesn’t necessarily mean that yours will fail too, but it definitely warrants a deeper investigation into that location before you make a decision.Related: 10 Things to Consider When Choosing a Location for Your Business2. Size mattersAnother mistake many franchisees make when looking for real estate is mis-calculating the size of the location they need for their business. Bigger isn’t necessarily better. Every penny counts when building a business, so making the right choices when it comes to any acquisition is important. Just because you’re getting the deal of a lifetime on a piece of real estate doesn’t mean it’s the right choice. Sometimes you’ll find real estate with a great cost per square footage, so the inclination is to take advantage of the price and go bigger. This can be a great opportunity, or it can be an unnecessary decision. Be sure to do your due diligence and run your numbers on all the properties you encounter. No matter how good the deal may look on paper, if you’re purchasing real estate with more square footage than what you actually need, the extra area must convert into profitable space. If not, it’s not actually a deal for “your” business.3. Building versus buyingThe larger the business, the more options you have for scaling and expanding your franchise locations. When deciding whether to build a new location or buy an existing structure, it is important to examine your numbers. On the surface, building a new location may seem to be the more expensive route, but that’s not always the case. There are many instances where the amount of work needed to convert an existing structure into what you require for your franchise location far exceeds the amount it would cost to simply build it. Some franchises have a very particular blueprint that they must follow; that may limit your real-estate options. Be sure to verify that the cost per square foot of the necessary buildout isn’t more than the cost per square footage for full construction. In some areas, these two numbers may be very similar, which actually allows you more flexibility in choosing your real-estate and location options. This can be helpful if you’re forced to follow a particular blueprint or real-estate guideline for your franchise.Related: Here Is How Much it Costs to Build a Restaurant (Infographic)4. Brand identity is importantYou must choose real estate that will allow you to showcase a cohesive and recognizable image. That being said, not all businesses require the same style of branding. For example, if you’re a franchisee of a major restaurant chain, then it’s imperative that the real estate you choose be recognizable to that established brand. A lot of major franchises will provide franchisees with an outline of building specifications, rules and possibly even approved locations for real estate. But, even smaller franchises should follow these guidelines and ensure that they continue a recognizable vision for their business across all of their locations. This means that even if your particular franchise allows for different styles of real estate, you still need to ensure the locations you choose allow you to use the appropriate signage or color scheme to showcase your brand identity. 5. Marketing mattersSometimes the real estate you pick is not as important as the marketing you choose. As a franchisee, you may choose the perfect piece of real estate in an awesome area and still have that business location fail. This happens when you place too much focus on the real estate and not enough on the marketing. The real estate you chose is extremely important, but it’s complemented by the marketing you do for your business and its locations. No matter what real-estate decision you’ve made, you need to create a marketing plan for that location. As a real-estate coach, I recommend that as soon as you’ve made a choice for your franchise location, you immediately begin working on a marketing plan. This way, while you’re preparing the new real estate for your business, you’re also preparing the area for your arrival and creating exposure for your new franchise location.Related: 4 Social Media Marketing Trends to Implement in Your 2021 StrategyConclusionThere are many factors that go into choosing the perfect piece of real estate for your business and franchise locations. However, as with every business decision, data and information are king. Be sure to have a business plan before you even begin looking for real estate. A good business plan will provide you with the information and possibly even the specifications needed to assist you in choosing the perfect piece of real estate for your franchise location.

4 Ways to Build a Seven-Figure Brand and Sellable Business

4 Ways to Build a Seven-Figure Brand and Sellable Business

Free Book Preview:
Brand Renegades

Discover how two entrepreneurs used unconventional business strategies to turn their startup into a multimillion-dollar company.

June
19, 2021

4 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

As the world reopens, consumers are changing their mindset and adjusting back to everyday life. They are spending more on products, services, and various offers from entrepreneurs. While the growth opportunities are tremendous, a lack of clarity often derails that growth. You may have started your business around something you’re passionate about, but you need clarity on where you’re going. One important step to scaling a business to six, seven or even eight figures is a vision and plan for what the business will evolve into. Will you always have a solopreneur type of operation? Do you want to build a business with virtual assistants? Would you consider bringing employees on? If it’s your goal to build a seven-figure brand and business that you could sell someday, here are four ways to build in a way that leads to clarity and growth. Related: 5 Marketing and Branding Tips to Scale Your Online Business1. Create a larger entity while using personal brand-building strategies.To build a sellable business, you need a structure that allows the business to be sold. If your business is wholly tied to you, it will be hard to sell. While creating an entity (LLC, corporation, agency, etc.) helps build a sellable business, personal brand growth strategies are still essential. A great example of this is how Gary Vaynerchuk has built VaynerMedia using the reach of the personal brand he’s created. To build a legacy brand, first, come up with the structure and name or convert an existing business. You can then use the internet and social media to leverage exposure, content and marketing on your personal brand alongside the entity brand. You end up building two assets.The idea of entrepreneurship is freedom and financial independence. The goal should be to build a business that can function without your constant direct involvement. Building a larger entity helps you accomplish those goals. 2. Use a value-first approach to marketing.It won’t take you long to scroll through the internet and experience a full-on hard rush of sales ads and messages. Too much content being published indicates you’re goes right for the sale without adding value to the consumer first. To build a seven-figure business that scales, don’t follow the typical approach. One way to convert more cold consumers is through value-first content. People are tired of the ads; they want real value through the content they consume every day. When you are the entrepreneur or business adding value first, you easily stand above the screams for sales.Consumers want to know how and why your business was started and the path you’re using to grow. They want high-performance strategies, digital marketing tactics, wellness optimization tips and other how-to-based content they can use without having to first spend money with you.Take a longer-term approach to marketing and converting consumers. It turns casual visitors into followers and eventually customers when you take a value-first first approach to digital marketing through solid content.Related: 7 Tips to Hit 7 Figures in 2020 and Beyond3. Make offers that have practical consumer value. Your business offers should be clear and based on practical value if you’re building a sellable business. That value could be through software, services, physical and digital products. Have product offerings for every segment of your target audience, ranging from low-tier to premium. Focus on tangible results and clear takeaways for consumers. They’ll see the value with less marketing required on your part. 4. Consistently show up and keep adding building blocks. A lot of the reason why industry leaders build large audiences is that they’re consistent about showing up and adding value. Look at any prominent YouTuber, influencer or big-name entrepreneur, and you’ll see a history of consistency.Growth starts with you being clear on your overall goals. If you’re content keeping a smaller business model, that’s okay. If it’s your goal to build a scalable and sellable business, consider how you’re doing with these four points.You can build a business that grows beyond you having to invest all of your time and energy always working. Strategically create freedom.Related: Gary Vaynerchuk: Entrepreneurial Success Isn’t What You Think

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