In the ever-changing world of business and branding, some unconventional perspectives can lead to quite the breakthrough. As entrepreneurs, we often find ourselves challenging the status quo to discover new paths to success but most of the time, we learn from our own experience.
In this blog post, I’ll share five unpopular opinions on building brands that go against conventional wisdom, inspiring you to think differently about your brand’s growth.
- Personal and Business Brands Go Hand in Hand
The notion that personal branding is only for influencers and public figures is outdated. Entrepreneurs can benefit immensely from building a personal brand alongside their business brand. By humanising your business and showcasing the values that drive you, you foster a deeper connection with your audience. When people resonate with the person behind the brand, they are more likely to become loyal customers and enthusiastic brand advocates.
Most of the clients I have will now go through an exercise where we go through what they perceive as their personal brand vs what they perceive their business brand to be and most of the time, they aren’t clear on the difference. Knowing the difference and not being afraid to show up on both brands can equate to income you may not have thought of. I did it the other way around by starting with a personal brand where I talked about my varied loves and that turned into my marketing agency CFM – it works both ways.
- Authenticity and Community Trump Algorithms
Algorithms and SEO often dominate the conversation on brand visibility. However, building a brand should be about more than just appeasing algorithms. Authenticity and consistency in messaging, design, and customer experience are what truly make an impact. Focusing on fostering a vibrant and engaged community around your brand naturally leads to increased brand recognition and sustainable growth through word-of-mouth and organic reach.
Back sometime in May/June I started a 30 day Tiktok challenge (@Chikumof) where I started a new page for myself and G (@Chik&G) where each day I would give advice on how you can still grow a Tiktok platform. In 30 days we had what has now been my most viral video (G loves that it’s with him) at over 8 million views and we got to over 5000 followers. Was that great? Of course! However, followers mean nothing if they’re not part of your community and engaged. I still don’t have 5000 followers on Instagram and have made a career from influencing and content creation because I have a community that have seen me start the blog, Mostly Muffins, Nyina, CFM and everything in between whilst supporting me every step of the way.
- Embrace Relatability, Reject Corporate Facades
Gone are the days when a corporate image was the gold standard of professionalism. Consumers now seek authenticity and relatability from the brands they support. Rather than appearing distant and formal, brands should aim to be approachable and genuine. Share behind-the-scenes insights, employee stories, and moments that showcase the human side of your brand.
It would come as no surprise to some of you reading (if you follow me on Instagram) that I live in my cow onesie. I have meetings in it, I record content in it and I use it for comfort. I’m not saying I show up to every meeting in my onesie but it has been mentioned enough times for me to realise it’s very clear when I’m comfortable so why would I change that? I still run a successful corporate business, it’s just a successful millennial corporate business…
Authenticity fosters trust and nurtures long-lasting relationships with your audience, an audience that is constantly watching you online even when you forget.
- Content Consistency Outweighs Paid Advertising
While paid ads can be beneficial when used strategically, they can’t replace the power of consistent organic content. Investing in creating content that resonates with your audience builds a foundation for your brand’s success.
We recently had a client come back to CFM after a year and we had to tell them we would not use paid advertising until they learned what they were doing with organic content. Why? You can’t fix something by throwing a money shaped plaster onto it. If you don’t know how to create and analyse organic content, you won’t know what to do with ads and you know how we know? Because we have years of experience and still predominantly work with organic content.
Genuine content attracts and engages customers, making your paid advertising efforts more effective and amplifying your brand’s reach.
- Prioritise Content Creation for Your Brand’s Growth
Entrepreneurial life can be demanding, leaving little time for content creation. However, creating content for your brand is a crucial investment in its future. Establishing a habit of consistent content creation, no matter how small the steps, will yield significant benefits.
As a personal brand that has also had multiple business brands, I know the importance of content creation and yet still struggle to sometimes keep on top of it. Sometimes I batch and it works, other times batching is the worst thing I can think of because I want more “in the moment content”. I’ve learned that it’s better to learn your own work flow and plan being completely honest with yourself because speaking from experience, getting back to creating content is harder than keeping up with the momentum and more often than not, the content you don’t post could have helped you earn some extra money.
Make content creation a priority, and you’ll witness its positive impact on your brand’s growth.
As entrepreneurs, it’s essential to question established norms and explore alternative approaches to building brands. These five unpopular opinions challenge conventional wisdom in brand development from personal experience, encouraging us to embrace personal branding, authenticity, and community. By prioritising consistent organic content and focusing on relatability, we can craft brands that truly resonate with our audience and stand the test of time. Remember, your brand’s uniqueness is its superpower – let it shine through!