Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur taxpayers own.
When it comes to cultivating a compelling brand story, many entrepreneurs follow the same sequence of events.
After a certain point of delving into creating their offer, they realize that no matter how good it is, their audience still needs to know, like, and trust their business in order to buy.
This leads them to realize that they need to create a brand story that conveys the values, mission, and vision of the company in a way that resonates with their audience.
At this point, many entrepreneurs rush in, usually without any strategy, and hire the first copywriter or brand strategist who looks good enough on paper to get the job done. They fill out a Google form questionnaire with all their history, pain points and wishes. They outsource the important branding and messaging work to the “experts,” put the final version on their website’s “About” page, and call it a day.
This strategy will make you feel accomplished enough to check “create a brand story” off your ever-growing to-do list. And if you do everything by the rules and are lucky enough to post in the right places at the right time, you’ll start to get known for your work and attract the right people to your business.
But there will inevitably come a point where the outsourced brand story won’t cut it: after months or years of telling the same story over and over again, its magic will inevitably run out. People will start to lose interest, and worse, you’ll get bored of repeating yourself. The story that once drew your audience in may even begin to drive them away. Eventually, you’ll hit a plateau and wonder why you can’t seem to get to the next level.
I see it happen all the time with my clients, even those who are well known in their industry or are leaders in multi-million dollar companies. By sheer force of effort, paid ads, and good enough products, they build a brand that reaches a desirable level of influence. However, they reach a point where the things they have been doing for years stop working and start to feel exhausting.
What we often forget about our brand history is that it is alive. It is meant to grow and evolve with you, not be delegated to a single task. If you really want to build that legacy brand that energizes you and makes you feel alive, you need a different approach.
Related: 5 Steps to Create a Story That Hooks Your Audience Every Time
Your brand story is the backbone of your business
Your story shows who you are, what you stand for and why you serve, all of which inform and influence your brand whether you like it or not.
So if you want to create the kind of story that catapults your business forward, you need to learn not only how to tell, but also how to embody your brand story.
Embodying your story means you know it so well that you can effortlessly transform it to support your personal evolution and the new opportunities you create in your business.
Amateur branding takes a rigid, left-brain approach that is unfortunately too simplified to benefit marketers who sell a fixed-step process that is taught to the masses, but fails to pay enough attention to the nuances that make your brand unique and the inevitable changes a growing brand goes through over time.
For example: Perhaps when you started your business, you were an ambitious young professional focused on the hottest, most cutting-edge trends. But now his focus has shifted to his family and creating a community through his work. Does your brand reflect that change? Did your brand story evolve with you or did it fall out of alignment?
Related: 3 Ways Perfectionism Kills Your Business (And How To Get Over It)
Connecting with your mission (and your audience)
Built-in branding feels connected to your mission and helps your audience connect, too.
It is not about copying what other opinion leaders are doing or following a specific set of steps. It’s about gaining a deeper understanding of your greater ‘why’, your vision, your values and what your brand’s true mission is on this planet – that’s when you tap into a source of creative power and possibility that will support you in your journey to the top.
Most entrepreneurs don’t operate from this level, and it’s usually because they avoid this confrontational question: Where in your brand story are you projecting your fears and where are you truly aligned with your soul purpose?
As an entrepreneur, you are the protector of your business. Most of the time, it’s your baby. This means that there are things about you that you are bringing into the business that need to be looked at.
Those pieces that feel shame, judgment, guilt, and unworthiness can be projected into your business, such as the way you lead your team or interact with your customers. The ugly beliefs you have that make you feel like you are not enough could be causing you to endlessly chase more money or more followers without feeling satisfied or proud.
Because when those stories seep into your messages, they create a dissonance that prevents you from seeing and feeling like the powerful entrepreneurial genius that you are.
Related: How to Build a Brand Story That Buyers Connect With Emotionally
Facing that question and answering it with brutal honesty is the first step in creating a brand story that allows you to appear confident and aligned with your message, no matter what others think. It’s how you start to show people what’s possible.
From that space, you can be unapologetic about what you share. You can stand firm on your deepest message that you know you have to share to change the world. You can be so vulnerable that you become invulnerable because you know your weak points and insecurities to the point that they no longer need to hide in your messages because you can see them for what they are and separate them from your work.
From this place, the true brand story unfolds because it is now just a matter of finding the words to describe the real you and what you do and who you do it for, rather than following a five-step strategy assigned by a contractor. external. . Now it’s you, being authentically yourself, and deciding how to share your deepest message with the world in a way that serves and supports your business.
The story you can share will only be as powerful as the story you embody within yourself, as an individual and an entrepreneur.
So will you tell a story as alive as you are to the people who need to hear it?