Creating Your Personal Brand

When people think about you, what comes to mind first? Is it a good thought or is it an unflattering thought? What do they know about you? What’s your personal brand? What do you stand for? You can think of your personal brand as a positioning statement. It can help you open doors, it can get you introduced to people you might not ever have the opportunity to meet, and it can make people want to spend time and money with you.

When I say the name “Mike Holmes,” what comes to mind? If you are an HGTV or TLC TV junky, you might think, “Make it Right.” Mike is the Canadian contractor who has a TV show where he helps homeowners who have been wronged or harmed by shady contractors. Mike is known for doing the right thing, and going beyond what he was called in to do to fix other people’s mistakes in order to help the homeowner. He’s as compassionate to homeowners, as he is dispassionate to shady contractors. He’s passionate about helping homeowners, educating contractors, and changing Canadian building codes to set higher standards.

Consider your personal brand to be a promise of what others will experience from you. When you think of it that way, what comes to mind? This isn’t easy to do and it took me a long time to come to terms with my personal brand. I help HVAC dealers market themselves with less ($). It helps them stay within budget and get the recognition they need. This has been evolving over the past two years and it will more than likely continue to evolve as I tweak and refine the language.

How do you discover your own personal brand? Dan Schawbel in a 2009 article titled “Personal Branding 101,” said when you think you have discovered your brand, you have to see if your self-impression matches with what others think about you. Then you have to discover how your brand fits into the business landscape. It’s always good to select a niche where you don’t have too many competitors, a place where you can grow your business and your brand. My niche is HVAC dealers as opposed to HVAC contractors. Some might call this, splitting hairs, and while I wouldn’t walk away from business from an HVAC contractor, dealers tend to be smaller and they often identify themselves with a particular brand or brands. I could further subdivide down to geothermal dealers, which would put me into a smaller niche, and ultimately I could wind up there but for now, I’ll try to stay in the larger niche.

What’s your niche for your personal brand? We’re naturally blurring the lines between business and self, and that’s okay because people often see us as our business. Does your personal brand include integrity? Do you show integrity in everything you do both for your business and for your personal life? Just like building a brand for your company can help people know your company, creating a personal brand helps people know what to expect when they deal with you.

If you haven’t thought about a personal brand, it’s something you should consider. Of course, you may have one and you don’t realize it. Ask someone who knows you what they think you stand for and compare that to what you think you stand for. Then decide if that’s a good start on your personal branding. If you’re moving one from one phase of your life to another, you should make having a personal brand a priority.

My website contains links to all the marketing articles I’ve written for the HVAC-Talk Newsletter. If you want your marketing efforts pay big dividends, contact a marketing professional. I’m available to assist you in all of your marketing efforts. If you need a branding consultation, a complete strategic marketing plan, or help with marketing services, call or send an email to discuss your needs.

Andy Fracica is president and CEO of Fracica Enterprises, Inc., a consulting firm specializing in marketing, and social media strategy. He has over 30 years of sales, marketing, and product management experience in the heating ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) industry. He concentrates on helping companies deliver their message in an ever increasingly crowded market by helping HVAC dealers market themselves with less ($). Contact him at 260-338-4554, [email protected] or visit the Fracica Enterprises, Inc. website.

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