How To Brand Yourself As A Network Marketer
There is a lot of branding advice floating around out there for how to brand yourself as a network marketer, but let me be the first one to shoot you straight. Much of it is a bunch of bologna.
Let’s first tackle the definition of personal branding as defined by Wikipedia: Personal branding is essentially the ongoing process of establishing a prescribed image or impression in the mind of others about an individual, group, or organization.”
For the purposes of this article, we are going to focus on the individual aspect of personal branding. What it is, what it is not and how you can effectively brand yourself as a network marketer.
The first aspect of personal branding to wrap your mind around is that it’s not something that you just wake up one morning and decide to do. You already have a personal brand. You already have established an impression in the mind of others of who you are as a person.
So don’t buy into trainings or advice that a personal brand is something you just all of sudden decide to create. With this fact in mind, the first step is to assess what your current personal brand says about you so you understand where you are starting from.
Building a personal brand was a huge turning point for me in having a major breakthrough to building a successful network marketing business. If you are new to personal branding or been trying to navigate through the confusing advice out there, this blog post and branding guide will help give you clarity as well as help you put some of these pieces together.
It is my sincere hope to show you how doing business a difference way can completely up-level your personal brand and create more results in your business.
What Is Personal Branding?
Your personal brand is your calling card. It allows you to combine all of your interests and passions so you can market yourself more effectively. It allows people to see what value you bring to the table and what makes you a unique individual.
The biggest mistake I see people make when they join a network marketing company is they start branding a company, service or product. Literally overnight they went from sharing pictures of their kids, their love of photography and living a more holistic lifestyle to saturating their Facebook page with sales-y product posts.
You want to quickly turn off potential customers and business partners? Turn your social media feed into a perpetual commercial. That’s because no one cares what you are selling. That is the cold hard truth. Your audience cares more about who you are as a person. The fact that you joined an opportunity doesn’t change that so the biggest mistake you can make is to drastically change the content you share.
Remember what we discussed above about what personal branding is, the impression you leave in the minds of others? The content you provide still needs to reflect that by giving value around your strengths, gifts and talents so you can continue to earn the trust of your network. Without trust people will not buy from you.
Make-up, coaching, skin care, jewelry, kitchenware, shampoo, weight loss supplements, cleaning products are a dime a dozen. Why should someone choose to buy products from YOU verses someone else or even their local big box store?
There is no one like you and that is your superpower. Your uniqueness is why people will be drawn to you and want to buy from you. It’s never about what you do. People have to like, know and trust you as a person, to first be attracted to YOU. Sharing content that people will value, that encourages them, that is useful is how you earn trust and become a respected resource.
When you build quality relationships with like minded people they will organically be drawn to work with you. Your brand is the gateway to earning the trust needed for people to buy from you and partner with you. It allows you to build a community of people centered around YOU and that tribe will follow you wherever you go because they trust YOU.
Let me give you an example, one that is a trusted well known household name: The Pioneer Woman. You may not remember her actual full name, Ree Drummond, but you know exactly who The Pioneer Woman is. She took her love of cooking, country living and love for life to create content centered around her passions.
Do you follow her on social media? If not, I encourage you to hop over to her Instagram account and spend some time reading through her posts. While she has a thriving brand, home and cooking products in Wal-Mart and a successful cooking show, you don’t see her constantly posting about those things. She shares her life, what she loves like ranch living, her hubby, kids, animals. Yes, there are posts related to what she does like recipes and products but the “what” does not dominate her feed.
Let me break it down this way, when you land onto her Instagram account, are you immediately being asked to buy something? Are you overwhelmed with sales copy begging you to make a purchase?
You land onto an account where she blends all areas of her life, her interests, what she loves and what she does. She shares herself, her family, what drives her and gives value. As you follow along with her in her daily life, she softly and subtly reminds you that you can buy her cookware at Wal-Mart and to plan a trip to Oklahoma to visit her Mercantile and stay at her B&B.
She markets herself first and through this example you can see what it means to properly brand yourself and sell what you do but you first need an identifiable personal brand in order to accomplish this.
How To Create A Personal Brand
So, what does your current personal brand look like?
Are you leading with incredible value that your audience can not get enough of?
Content that attracts them to do business with YOU?
Or are you spending day after day posting about what you do?
Your latest flash sale?
A fact about your company that no one really cares about because its not solving their problems?
Posting about the trip you are trying to earn?
Let me ask the hard questions: what kind of engagement are you really getting on these types of posts? Are people blowing up your inbox to hear more? Are they tagging their friends in the comments because the info is so good they don’t want them to miss out on it?
I bet the answer to these questions is no because I know from personal experience and making the same mistakes early on in my business but don’t be discouraged friend! It’s never too late to take a right turn off the wrong road.
Organizing your personal brand can seem overwhelming but here is a 5 Step Branding Guide to help you start the process of creating a personal brand that showcases you so people will be attracted to not only who you are but when done right with consistency attracted to what you do.
PERSONAL BRANDING STEP ONE: THE POWER OF YOUR STORY AND CLARIFYING YOUR PASSIONS
Your story, past experiences and struggles are what people will resonate with the most. Your story is your greatest asset. It makes you real and relatable while attracting the right people into your circle who can identify with you and what drives you.
Grab a journal and let’s drive in!
identify the areas of your life that you are passionate about, and why you are passionate about them. Here are some writing prompts to get you started:
1. What are your passions? Hobbies?
2. How can your past experiences be used to inspire others who are facing something similar?
3. What parts of your story really stand out that you feel called to share?
4. What do your family and friends come to you for advice?
5. How do you want to help people?
6. What makes you feel fulfilled?
Write out your gifts, talents and passions. What are your strengths? What makes you unique to the world? You can even enlist your friends and family to help you with this, asking them what 1-2 attributes they most appreciate about you.
Answering these questions will help you start to gain some clarity around the message you want to share.
PERSONAL BRANDING STEP TWO: DEFINE YOUR TARGET MARKET
Brace yourself because this next piece of advice is probably going to go against everything that most companies teach when it comes to sales, sharing products and recruiting but the sooner you fully embrace that concept of "target market", you will be unstoppable in your business.
You are NOT meant to work with everyone. Most network marketing companies out there are teaching "make a list of everyone you know, talk to strangers, share this with everyone, its a numbers game, talk to enough people and you will be successful".
While the law of averages will work out eventually, it’s also not a strategy for everyone. There are people who have the gift of gab and can talk to anyone and sell ice to Eskimos but not everyone has that personality type and if you don’t it can be a very frustrating experience to work through 100 people and only have 10 say yes to purchasing a product or joining your business while you scare off your friends and family with over zealous sales pitches.
Doesn't it make more sense to talk to 10 of the RIGHT people and have 5 say yes?
The key to this strategy is to define YOUR target audience. A good place to start is to understand YOUR personality type first. Are you an introvert or extrovert? Do you thrive at networking events or building relationships on a more personal one-on-one level?
Once you better understand YOUR personality traits you can better position yourself to market in a way that honors who you are allowing you to target the people who will resonate with you. Surrounding yourself with like minded people will increase your rate of success. You will attract more people with common interests and can relate to your story and the content that you share. You will earn their trust and establish a relationship quicker.
Have you ever met someone that you had zero in common with? The conversation and breaking the ice was a struggle wasn’t it because there was no common interest to talk about and keep the conversation going. Now think about the time you met someone where the conversation flowed easily. Someone who maybe grew up in the same town, knew some of the same people, was an animal lover too, attended the same church. The conversation quickly became easier and more enjoyable, like connecting with a long lost friend.
Once you define your target audience you can seek those types of people out at networking events and social media to position yourself in front of people who will be open to a relationship with you, giving their trust and opening their wallets to do business with you.
Here are some writing prompts to help you define the type of audience to connect with:
1. What problem(s) do people have that you can help solve for them?
2. Who are they? (female, male)
3. What do they do for a living?
4. Do they have kids?
5. Are they career minded?
6. Pursuing higher levels of education?
7. Work in a specific field? (Nurse, realtor, photographer, teacher, traditional business owner).
PERSONAL BRANDING STEP 3: DEFINE YOUR MESSAGE
Now that you have a better understanding of your strengths, how your story can impact others and your passions, you can drill down your brand message. Using The Pioneer Woman again, her welcome message or “tag line” on her website says “Howdy! I’m a desperate housewife. I live in the country. I’m obsessed with butter, Basset Hounds, and Ethel Merman. Welcome to my frontier!” Its a quick fun introduction to who she is.
I want to quickly drive home that you don’t land on her website and see a welcome message that says “Hi! I have a cooking show and you can buy my line of kitchen ware at Walmart!” I may sound like a broken record here but your network marketing company does not define you so don’t give people this impression because you are greatly selling yourself short.
Your tag line is one to two sentences that gives people a well rounded insight into who you are. You can use this in your social media bios, website and building the foundation of your daily content on.
PERSONAL BRANDING STEP FOUR: MASTER THE CONTENT
Now that your brand is taking shape and coming to life, you can begin sharing content on your social media pages centered around your story and what drives you that will not only help you stand out but position you to attract more of the right people.
To demonstrate this, let me give you a couple of examples:
I have a friend who is a mom of two boys, has acreage with animals, loves to garden, is passionate about sharing the truth of the dangers of vaccinations and living a holistic lifestyle. She also happens to be with an essential oil network marketing company but here is the key: she doesn’t lead with her company. She leads with sharing homesteading tips, how to grow fresh herbs, being a mom and raising her kids to love life and take care of the earth, educating her followers on why she chooses not to vaccinate and she weaves the products that she uses (essential oils, etc.) into that content.
She has grown quite a following not because she is with a network marketing company but because of who she is and her beliefs. The value she gives and why she gives it inspires people to want to learn more about what she does.
Another example, if I may, of how I share my own brand: encouraging women in their faith, to be true to who they are, to dare to be who God created them to be, my love of unicorns, my crazy mom life while running a full time business and my belief that everyone woman should have fabulous hair. I blend all of these things together to create the content I share. In other words, you don’t land on my social media accounts and see me talking constantly about MONAT. There is much more to me than my network marketing company.
What will your overall brand message look like when you blend your passions and story together? How can you use that to weave in and share your products or services more authentically and less spammy?
PERSONAL BRANDING STEP FIVE: CONSISTENCY IS KEY
Be consistent with your messaging at every opportunity. Advertisements, marketing materials, video presentations and testimonials should share value as well as images and colors that are consistent. This allows for a consistent clean look across your social media channels that will inspire your network to connect with you and your message.
Craft your personal brand around your personal style as much as possible. Choose consistent images to market your brand. Photography, colors and images in marketing make a huge impact on your business. Follow this rule throughout your marketing, offline and online and you will attract people who are ready to open their hearts and wallets to do business with you.
When you lead with your story while giving well rounded value that helps your audience you will build a personal brand and sustainable network marketing business. it will require showing up daily with realistic expectations that success does not happen overnight. It will take time to build influence around your personal brand and attract the right followers.
The abundance that you experience will be a direct reflection of the value that you selflessly give and the relationships that you build. Being of service to others is what leads people to trust you enough to want to learn more about your business and products leading to a bank account that thrives.
Were these tips helpful? Did it change your perspective of how to properly build a personal brand and market your network marketing business more effectively? Leave me a comment and share how your branding journey is going. I would love to hear from you!
Terri Willingham is a free-spirited entrepreneur who enjoys the country life on a Texas ranch with her husband Joe and amazing two boys. She is is grounded in faith and family with a deep passion for spreading joy and empowering other women through her Bossy Beauty community to embrace and believe in their own inner free spirit. Learn more HERE