This week, in my Facebook Group, The Personal Brand Fam, I was asked a great question and I thought more people would get some value out of the conversation, so I've decided to publish it here.
Hey, guys. How are you going?
My name is Brandon Clift. I'm the owner of Zone Transformation Specialists, a team dedicated on the Gold Coast to helping people identify exactly what they're capable of and getting to know the man or woman in the mirror.
I've had this business for two years now. We operate out of a gym, and I'm at a point now where I'm wanting to start to build my personal brand, however, I've got so much invested time, energy, equity in my business.
Chad, a question I've been wanting to ask you forever, firstly, I'm a big fan, I love your work. I want to ask you: How does one begin to build a personal brand? What are the first steps when I have so much committed to a business right now that's basically putting food on the table?
Man, I would love your answer to that, a huge fan. Thank you for creating this group. I jumped at the opportunity, and, yeah, man, really, really looking forward to hearing your response.
So, here we go!
How To Approach Personal Branding When You've Already Got a Business
Brandon, this is such an incredible question and I'm so glad you asked it.
Before I answer it I just want to acknowledge the fact that you're actually wearing a T-shirt in this video 🙌🏻 It's a rare occurrence and I'm not sure I’m happy about it. 😉
Okay, so this breaks into a few points.
1. I would never recommend someone create a separate identity in spite of the current business that's affording them their lifestyle.
It’s always important to have something that puts food on the table and it's awesome that you recognise that. One way to look at it would be to approach your Personal Brand as an extension of your existing brand.
In my interview w Jack Delosa recently, he put it this way,
“When you have a personal brand and a business brand, they are not the same, but particularly if you as a person are deeply connected to the business, there should be an overlap or a connection, or at least ... Perhaps overlap isn't the best word, but perhaps a synergy.
To give you an example of a synergistic relationship between a company brand and a personal brand. Jack, if I talk about myself in third person for a second, brand Jack questions, The Entourage answers. Jack's the provocateur, The Entourage is the education institution.”
2. Because you already have a thriving business, you already have an understanding of who you are and why are you doing these things.
You've already done a lot of the work! It's hard to build a thriving business without building a platform based on the values and principles.
These same values and principles can absolutely transfer over into your personal brand, as long as you think it is appropriate.
Just because you own a gym, doesn't mean your personal brand has to be “fitness extraordinaire” - your message might be more closely aligned to mindset, mental health, and purpose-driven living, which are totally values I know your fitness career is centred around.
3. You and I have talked a little bit about my “Make an Impact” model.
The first 3 steps are about the Foundation of your Personal Brand and the last 3 are about Execution and becoming a Thought Leader.
It’s time to deep dive into who Brandon Clift is, what he stands for, why his voice matters (because it does matter), and what impact he wants to make.
I know you have an incredible heart and your natural ability to communicate with others is astounding. People will respond to whatever you have to say.
I would recommend digging into the second model. If you relate to anything in the dark grey sections, you'll find you may be missing the element that sits opposite.
Eg. If you feel like you're "yelling at everyone", then you need to work on your "Market (Target Audience)"
If you relate to more than one, I'd say it's time for a bit of a Personal Brand overhaul ☺️
4. Which brings me to figuring out who you want to make an impact with.
A lot of people are challenged to come up with an “ideal client” or “target audience” because they think they’re cutting out a potential market and an income stream.
However, this clarity allows you to find common ground between yourself and the market. I would stress that this is as important if not slightly more important than figuring out your identity.
The name of the game is to flight for depth rather than breadth.