7 Things Every Entrepreneur Must Do to Build a Successful Brand
Everyone’s path to success is different. And while there is no exact path to follow that will guarantee success, there are certain things that successful entrepreneurs and successful brands all share. Here is a look at 7 things that all entrepreneur must do to build a successful brand. 1. Know Your Brand You would be surprised how many people talk about “their brand” but do not really know what it is. Many entrepreneurs use the term brand when they really should be talking about their marketing. Marketing is what you are doing; your brand is why you are doing it. A brand is everything your business stands for and influences everything it does. The best way to keep this consistent is by putting together a mission statement. This is a document that states what your true brand is all about. When you have a solid mission statement it can be used as a touch point you refer back to so you can make sure you are always on brand. 2. Be Authentic Consumers are savvier than ever and they can smell when something is inauthentic or fake from a mile away. All successful brands are real and true to themselves. Trying to be something you’re not or being a certain way that you think will appeal to certain people is a strategy that will ultimately backfire. Successful entrepreneurs understand that their brand might not be for everyone but that will go further with the people it is for than a phony brand searching for mass appeal. 3. Stand Out Another great reason to keep it real with your brand and not try to be like everyone else is that you will stand out more that way. Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery but it is not the best path to build a successful brand. Almost all markets and forms of marketing are pretty saturated nowadays so to find success, your brand needs to stand out. Each individual entrepreneur finds their own unique way to achieve this, but the common thread is that they do stand out and get noticed above all the noise in their industry or category. 4. Educate Yourself on Other Brands While you need to create a brand that is unique and stands out that doesn’t mean you should not study and learn from other brands, both in your industry and outside of it. Entrepreneurs who build successful brands know, not only their own brand, but their competitor’s brands, the brand’s (or lack thereof) or failed businesses that came before them, and the brands of successful companies in other spaces. Studying other brands can give entrepreneurs ideas on what to do, what not to do and even present opportunities to partner with similar brands in other industries. 5. Tell a Compelling Brand Story Storytelling is one of the big buzzwords in the marketing and brand-building world today. This is because when you can tell the story behind your brand in a compelling way, it makes for the deeper connection between your brand and the consumer. There are many different ways to go about it but the common thread is that the story is persuasive and captivating and is told in a way that captures the attention of your target audience. 6. Get Your Story Out There Once an entrepreneur has crafted their compelling brand story, the next step down the road to success is getting it out there. This means doing it on your website and not just in the “About Me” section but throughout. It means getting it out not just on social media but on the right social media. What social platforms do your key consumers inhabit? Facebook? Snapchat? Pinterest? You need to find this out and speak to your people on social and the right mix of other forms of media that work to tell your brand story. 7. Develop a Culture that Supports Your Brand An entrepreneur's biggest challenge overall is transitioning and scaling from a one-person show to an actual business with real people joining the mix. While undertaking this challenge, successful entrepreneurs must not only scale, but do so in a way where they are simultaneously developing a culture that supports and reflects their brand. This is the final step where people can finally transition from successful entrepreneur to successful brand. Summary Being an entrepreneur is a unique journey by definition and everyone’s story of success starting their own business is wildly different. When you hear enough of these individual stories though you will see that the common thread is building a great brand. And to build a successful brand, every entrepreneur goes about it in their own way but hits on all of these 7-steps along the way.