As creative professionals, we must always take care of one aspect: finding and retaining clients for a longer period of time. It’s essential to note the fact that professionals who have personally branded themselves are witnessing more success. Even if their services don’t stand out, the price they ask for does. The moment you choose to create a “personal brand”, the moment you’ll be able to manage and control the variables of your professional career. Being your own boss isn’t that difficult; you must set yourself on the right path and be persistent the moment you encounter tough times.
So what does it mean to create a personal brand? In just a few words, your personal brand is your online resume, formed in an unconventional way. In the present moment, most graphic designers are choosing this option because it provides them with numerous benefits. On the opposite side, there are quite a lot of professionals who can’t recognize the importance of personal branding. They believe that freelancing won’t be their full-time job; therefore they don’t have to take care of their personal promotion. Huge mistake!
If you choose to build a personal brand, you choose to sell yourself as a product. Well, you’re offering services, but the idea stays the same. Branding yourself proves that you’re a professional, who cares about giving value, and also cares about communicating that specific need in a proper manner. The more you develop your brand and the more you expose yourself, the better results you’ll get. John Gravy, HR, and social media manager at Essayontime states that “By making yourself the product, you can leverage aspects such as your revenue, opportunities, and successes”.
Now let’s take a look at seven insightful tips and tricks that should allow you to stand out from the crowd and create a professional platform dedicated to your brand’s awareness expansion.
Have a Specialty
You are competing with millions of freelancers that are probably looking for the same thing: more clients and revenue. If you can stand out of the box and make yourself known for something, you’ll be extremely advantaged in today’s marketplace.
The graphic designers that are specializing in certain niches and those who are looking to perfect their services will reach more success. Ask yourself this question: “What exactly do I want to be known for?” Figure out the answer and create some proper goals around your answer.
Flesh Out Your Social Media Profiles
Social media is a huge aspect of today’s marketing environment. If you want to let people know that you exist, social media is the best place to do so. Creating exposure through social channels isn’t difficult. You need to choose between many social media networks: choose the one that suits your business needs best.
Next, try to establish professional looking social media profiles. Post relevant content and do it regularly. Doing so, you can expect your content to travel from person to person through the use of the sharing and feature.
Build Your Own Design Blog
Creating a blog is another good strategy of creating your personal brand. If you’re a graphic designer, you can most certainly create your own personal platform. You already have the skills, so you don’t have to use your budget for such action.
Again, content should be present on your design blog. Create a place where you can always welcome new potential clients and partners. The costs aren’t that high either, you need a hosting, a domain.
Build Authority Around Your Brand
If you want to be known, you have to promote yourself and create a certain degree of brand authority. You can improve your brand’s awareness by submitting your personal work to various blogs, magazines, and online galleries. You can also contact an artist on social media and ask them to feature your work. Creating authority means being able to prove your value. If you can expand your horizons and also make people’s lives easier or more beautiful, you’re in the game.
Get Active in Relevant Discussions
Your personal activity will often dictate your results. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a novice or professional designer; you must be active and let people know that you care about helping them. Do some research; find specialized forums where more graphic designers or web owners are spending time. Communicate and post relevant answers for your potential client’s problems and needs. If you’re useful, you can expect some of them to follow you back to your main personal website.
Share, Post, and Engage Regularly
As mentioned earlier, maintaining an active social status is important to your overall success. When you are considered to be a personal brand, the level of respect that you’re demanding grows higher. In return, you must also give back to the marketplace. Be active and communicate with your potential clients. First of all, you can do this by engaging through the use of social media. You can follow people, like individual pages, and also instantly message almost anyone you want. Even if it’s not your content, you should supply your audience with enough value in order to make it worthwhile for them to keep following you.
Network, Network, Network
In any professional field, networking represents one of the essential activities that one can do. Getting in touch with different people gives you lots of growth opportunities. Besides the growth, you’ll be able to seize professional opportunities that can help you in the longer term. Networking is easy nowadays; you need a computer and an internet connection. Oh, let’s not forget about the reasons for which you’re networking and the skills and offers that you possess. Again, social media can help you establish powerful long-term relationships and connections.
Choosing and proceeding to create a personal brand could be the best decision that you have ever made. The level of professionalism that it’ll bring you will be definitely worth the time that you spend on creating your brand’s image. The good thing is that everything’s going to be tougher at first, and it’ll gradually become easier.
You only have to make a website once, but you’ll have to post content regularly. You’ll only have to craft a social media profile once, but your social engagement should be regular. Either way, focusing on your personal branding is important for your long term success!