In an era driven by influence, celebrity star power, brand identity and social media marketing, it has become more crucial than ever to not just sell a good product or service, but to also build a name brand around that product or service. Your ability to be recognized by your target market? the world over and more importantly, to have credibility with those individuals?will be the key to whether your customer does business with you or your competitor. Two key precepts: you have to be a brand and there has to be a personal face on that brand. Your customer doesn’t want to do business with your company; they want to do business with YOU. That is so long as you are the brand that they recognize as the authority in your industry.

 

Let’s look at five steps to increase your star power right now.

 

  1. Be Somebody; Stand for Something. This will be the foundation of creating your celebrity persona. You must have a very clear vision of exactly who you are, what you’re about and what your brand stands for. Sounds simple enough, but many businesses struggle to achieve this. It requires not spreading yourself in too many directions or trying to be an authority on many different issues. You must choose the one or two core subjects that best suit your business, your target market and your expertise. This is important because now whenever people hear your name, this will be the one or two words that immediately come to mind. For example, when we hear Donald Trump, we think real estate. He may own many other businesses, but his brand and what he stands for is real estate. If you try to associate your name with too many different topics, you will confuse your customers and dilute your brand identity.
  2. Be Everywhere. This is the second most important step because regardless of what you stand for or how noble your cause, if people cannot find you, you will never become a recognizable brand. There is no more pervasive medium today than social media. It has the reach and power to brand you as an expert the world over, so use it. Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google Plus are the absolute minimum for where your brand should have a presence. Also, do not forget to create a company page on LinkedIn besides your personal profile and do not forget to create a fan page on Facebook besides your personal account. These are great marketing tools. The more social platforms you can put your face on, the easier it becomes for people to find you and the more prolific your brand is perceived to be.
  3. Interact With Your Fans.? Great, you have your social media pages ready to go. What’s next? Do we simply use these pages to blast out sales material, product updates and news events about your company? No. Yes, we do use social media to do these things. But it doesn’t stop there. The number one advantage of using social media is that it gives you a chance to interact with your fans/customers. Coldly blasting out product updates and discount codes is not interaction. Interaction is a conversation that goes both ways. Talk to your customers, listen to their feedback about your products and services, ask them for suggestions and recommendations to improve and build on the products you already sell. Let your customers participate in the actual process of producing, marketing and selling your products. This creates brand loyalty.
  4. Be Consistent. This may be obvious, but I have seen it happen more often than you would think. If you want people to remember your brand and who you are, make it easy for them. Use one color scheme, one logo, one slogan and one overall format for your marketing materials. Do not use one type of color scheme and logo on your Twitter profile, and then have a different type of header on your Facebook profile and then have yet another type of identity for your main website. Make everything look as similar as possible. The object here is when somebody sees a specific type of color scheme, logo or design, they immediately think of your brand. Keep your colors, fonts and designs consistent.
  5. Get Out There. The best way to get visibility is to be visible. Attend as many events within your industry as humanly possible. The key is to get out there and tell your story, put a face to the name and get your business card out. There’s a good saying that your network is your net worth. You want as many people as possible to know who you are and what you stand for. Anybody you meet could be your next client. You can even take this a step further by offering your services as a public speaker. What better way to boost your credibility as an expert than to be the one giving a speech on your industry at a conference or get-together?
  6. Get Published. Want to know a solid strategy for establishing yourself as THE expert? Be the one who wrote the book!? Writing a book is easier than ever these days with the advent of many publishing tools. You can even hire a professional writer to assist you in writing it. Using one of the many tools available online, you are only a few clicks away from having your very own hard cover (and/or ebook) sold on Amazon or Barnes and Noble. For more information about self-publishing a book on Amazon, you can visit: http://www.amazon.com/gp/seller-account/mm-summary-page.html?topic=200260520

About the Author: Richard Lorenzen is the CEO of New York PR firm Fifth Avenue Brands. You may follow him on Twitter at @rlorenzen.