MARCH 2017 NOTE FROM DOYENNE GROUP EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
In the February Letter from the Executive Director I wrote that I’m going to be spending the next few months discussing separating yourself from your business’s social media pages to build a stronger brand.
This month’s topic is “You are not the business’s brand, but your business’s brand is you”
WHAT DO I MEAN BY THAT?
When you’re building your business, in the early days it does feel like you’re the brand of the business, especially if you’re running it by yourself. But setting up the business to be solely based on you is not sustainable and will create pain points down the road once you grow from the founding individual(s) into other team members.
Instead you should look at yourself as the Founder or Co-founder of the business. What your role is within the business defines what you do as part of the business and how you present yourself within the brand. Your brand is what the company stands for and how it is viewed by your customers and clients. When you solely market your business through your personal social media channels, only post photos of you working within the business, or promote yourself as the business instead of you as part of the business, you are creating a brand that revolves around you instead of a brand that revolves around the identity of the business.
OK, SIDEBAR…WHAT IS A BRAND?
Curious to learn more about building a brand? Check out these articles and resources:
- The Basics of Branding
- Branding 101: Tips for Building a Killer Identity
- Doyenne Worksheet: Branding Document Template
The purpose of your brand is to build recognition of your business, what it does, how it does it, who it’s for, and how it impacts target customers and clients, not to promote you and the “cool stuff” you’re doing as an entrepreneur.
So, you might be thinking But Heather, I’m not ready to separate myself from my business because it’s not at that point yet. [Or] I’m not ready yet.
Guess what, it is and you are! There’s no time better than the present to start this. Even if you’ve been blurring the lines between personal and business social media profiles since 2003 when Myspace launched, you can change that today.
START MAKING THE SWITCH…
- If you haven’t already, create a professional/business page under your business name. Even if you’re business is a one stop shop with you managing all of it, creating a business page elevates your professional appearance to your current and potential clients/customers. Your audience shouldn’t be seeing your business posts mixed in with pictures of your delicious dinner and personal political viewpoint posts.
- Set boundaries around who you friend/follow and who you allow to friend/follow you.
- If you have your social media page setup as your personal zone and you’re worried about potentially damaging your brand through your personal posts, don’t friend/follow people from your professional network on your personal pages.
- In addition to your business page, you can create a personal professional page, like Beyonce does…you know you want to be like Beyonce 😉 to add professional connections there and have a personal page for your close family and friends where you can be you.
ARE YOU WONDERING HOW YOU’RE GOING TO MANAGE ALL OF THESE PAGES?
- Explore social media management tools that allow you to select what pages you want to post to. You can still choose to post that oh so adorbs pic of your pet wearing swag from your business on all your pages, but don’t do so every day (“7 Types of Social Media Content That Drive Most Engagement“).
Some tools to consider are: Hootsuite, Buffer, Everypost. One of our interns did some research on Social Media posting platforms last year, check out her research here
- Share and re-post to your personal pages via your business pages. While you’re in the transition, and going forward, I highly encourage you to cross promote your business page posts on your personal page. It took you lots of time and work to build your following, now you need to transition that following to your business page. Start by re-posting to your personal page, and then start to share your business page with a note about “I’ve created a business page for you to stay up to date on what we’re working on and how to stay connected. Like/Follow our page”