This Post is also a podcast episode!
This is a conversation I have with a lot of clients, especially coaches, healers and other solo service providers. Technically, all of these people, like me, have personal brands (*groan*). . . But most of us are terrified by this term because It means we have to be the public “face” of our business and that elicits all types of other fears, like being vulnerable, seen as “salesy” or being rejected for our ideas.
AND on top of that, there’s the “need to please” that can seep from our personal lives into our business life. It shows up as trying to appeal to all the people, and serve all of the people to the point of burning ourselves out. But the thing is, the most authentic and successful marketing doesn’t appeal to everyone. Trust, though, that once you get really clear on the WHO, WHY and HOW, that it will appeal to the right people- the ones who will benefit the most from your services, the ones who’ll show up with the most enthusiasm, the ones who will be the most fun to work with because you are operating on the same frequency.
Most entrepreneurs, particularly women, have a hard time putting themselves out there and this make marketing of any kind a HUGE hurdle.
My anecdote: Holistic Branding.
Brand strategy should be the first step you take before creating any content, a website, or a marketing campaign. And holistic branding strategy takes into account your unique talents and personality, but also focuses on the “ideal client” and how you provide a transformation for them. Your branding is the big filter through which you will attract only the highest caliber clients/ customers.
For a lot of us solopreneurs, especially in the coaching industry, our ideal clients are very similar to us. They are probably looking to have the sort of transformation that we had at some point in the recent past, and that is why we know that we are uniquely qualified to help them get that transformation. So I invite you to do this exercise:
WHO is your ideal client?
Maybe you’ve already had this client, which is super helpful. If not, write down some of the attributes they might possess, what their strengths and challenges are, and how you are going to help them achieve some sort of transformation. And then consider what you have in common with them.
What can you share from your own story that will resonate with them? How vulnerable are you willing to be?
That’s part 1 of Holistic Branding.
Part 2: Don’t make it ALL about you.
Does that take off some of the pressure? ?
As it says in the book, Building a StoryBrand, The client is the “hero” of the story (your branding) and you are the “guide”. So when you are sharing personal stories in your content, make sure it’s always through the lens of the guide: that the real focus (or “moral” of the story) is on the client’s transformation. This might look like you sharing stories about your own similar transformation, or sharing anecdotes that make it clear that you are the right “guide” to lead them.
Like it or not, marketing/ selling is an essential part of being an entrepreneur. There’s no way around it if you want to grow, but I teach ways to do this in a way that feels good AND authentic and creates value for both YOU and your audience. And guess what? The bonus is that marketing can actually be a catalyst for huge personal growth and really important mindset shifts.
If you’re interested in a Holistic Business Growth strategy consultation, contact me here! Or check out my Holistic Business Plan course to dig deeper into some of these exercises around holistic brand strategy (as well as mindset, goal-setting and much more!)