Sometimes when I’m listening to podcasts, my mind begins to drift and I start thinking about how quickly I can have dinner prepared when I arrive home.
But on a particularly average day in February, I was listening to a certain podcast that broke through the monotony – Marketing School by Neil Patel and Eric Sui.
I can’t tell you which episode it was specifically – or what the topic was – but there was a statement that one of the hosts said that really stuck in my head.
“2017 is the year of branding,” either Neil or Eric said (I do apologise to the gents. Like I said, my brain is usually on another tangent).
They used an example of Gary Vaynerchuck.
His business is worth hundreds of millions of dollars. He’s got millions of followers on all of the medias social. Yet, his website gets very little blog traffic.
So the question is – how does he cultivate a multimillion dollar business?
He brands himself like a boss.
Gary V is the unequivocal king of personal branding, and because of that, he has built up such a following that it truly doesn’t matter if his web traffic drops, he will still make sales.
That – my friends – is the aim of business.
Be the Gary V of supermarkets. The Gary V of real estate. The Gary V of portaloos.
Whatever your business may be, ensure that 2017 is the year where you focus on branding.
Here are my top 5 ways to tighten your brand in 2017.
1) Find your voice
Gary V is a big fan of swearing, whilst Pat Flynn is a gentle giant.
Neither is wrong. Both made $100,000+ per month.
The most important thing for you is that you have a voice, and you are true to it. There is nothing more off-putting than following someone who speaks like Audrey Hepburn, only to find in reality that they’re more of an Ozzy. Get this right and it will pay off in spades.
2) Stick at it
There’s a list of businesses and entrepreneurs who have started and subsequently given up on their online profile, longer than.. well… this sentence.
Nothing is going to happen overnight, but trust the process and know that brand awareness is going to pay you back in dividends.
Keep posting, keep creating and keep providing value…
3) Give value (see what I did there…)
Like Gary V and Patt Flynn, successful business owners and entrepreneurs understand the value of value.
It can’t be all take, take, take.
As part of your business or personal branding exercise, give away content for free.
Tell everyone your secrets – shout them from the rooftops – and I guarantee in no time people will be throwing their money at you.
4) Find partnerships
They say that your life is a direct reflection of the five people you spend the most time with, and the same can be said of your brand.
Your personal or business brand is strengthened – or weakened – by the business and people that the brand is associated with.
It is important to audit this association, but also make meaningful connections with people who would be able to add value to your brand.
5) Get press
People need to learn your name, and you need to get it out there.
There are a number of platforms that help you connect with journalists and bloggers in your niche.
One example of such is SourceBottle, which can help you get free press and become a thought leader on your topic.
This is one of the most important ways that you can build up brand awareness!