Branding: (Free Tutorial)
- Why Brand Building Matters?
You build your brand to create your own identity, stress out values that distinguish you from competitors, and gain your targeted market’s trust. When you build your brand the right way, you will be able to attract consumers’ attention. Then, once you have their attention, you can get them to engrave a great image of you and that of your product or service in their mind, which makes it easier for you to promote your business. So, if you are a beginner in the Internet marketing business, or just want to refresh your memory about branding, this article has interesting information you don’t want to miss.
In fact, having a strong brand will make your customers want to buy from you and be loyal to you based on that brand. Your good reputation and success in your niche depends on how good your brand is, the way you advertise it, and how much people actually want or need what you are selling to them.
When you are offering a great product or service and backing it up with superior branding, you increase your credibility and recognition among consumers. It is really going to be much easier for you to raise awareness among people about what your company all about. This is because your high quality brand will simply sell itself. The message, the color, and visual symbols of your brand will tell your targeted market segments who you are and if they can trust you or not. So, it is vital to get it right.
Additionally, the financial value of your brand can give you a competitive advantage when trying to explore new markets, enter new venture, or make a merging agreement. No company wants to merge with or get into any merging deals with a poorly branded firm. They are more likely to cooperate with a well-known and reputable company with a trusted brand.
Another fact is that in the employment market, recruiting talented job seekers can be very competitive. In general, people like working for companies they trust. Thus, proper branding will play an important role in you effort to hire talented people and retain them.
Consequently, your branding techniques should reflect your business goals, mission, and vision. They should send a clear message about how your product or service can be useful to the society. Again, making sure that you brand is strong enough and designed to convey such message is the key to your success.
- Focusing on Branding “Yourself”
In the Internet marketing industry, focusing on branding yourself is very important for multiple reasons. You brand yourself to let your customers know the kind of business owner you are and what kind of expertise, or work experience, makes you the right person to provide them with services or sell products to them. As an Internet marketer and a business owner, you are the person behind your company and whatever you are selling.
Therefore, you need to connect with your audience and create strong relationships. The best way to do it is to put yourself out there by publishing your biography and anything you have accomplished in life that would make people trust you. So, as stated earlier, you build trust in your industry when you brand yourself properly.
Let’s take a look at the definition of the word “Branding.” According to BusinessDictionary.com, it is “the process involved in creating a unique name and image for a product in consumers’ mind, mainly through an advertising campaign with a consistent theme. Branding aims to establish a significant and differentiated presence in the market that attract and retain loyal customers.” Even though this definition is focused on the product in a very traditional way, you can too use the same concepts to brand yourself and your company.
Accordingly, this tutorial article is intended to give you an idea about why and how you should brand yourself, your product or service, as well as your company. You will also learn simple techniques that will allow you to create an avatar of yourself, and design a logo for your business. As a beginner in Internet marker, your start up budget might be tight. When you learn how to do these simple things on you own, you save money, which is the purpose of this article.
Either you are selling products or services on your own website, on social media, or any other sites, when you brand yourself online, you get a chance to educate your audience about who you are. That is your chance to tell them what your special skills are, your education, and how you intend to use all of these to help people within and outside your community. This is also your opportunity to establish strong business relationships with your customers by introducing yourself to them.
– Now, how do you band yourself?
Generally, in traditional business practices, when you think of branding, the first thing that would come to your mind is designing your Logo. While designing a logo is one of the important steps in your branding strategies, when you are professionally marketing your products or services online, you may want to start by branding yourself.
You brand yourself by creating an “About Me” or an “About the Author” page to be placed online. This page will contain an “avatar” of yourself and one or more paragraphs of your biography. You create your avatar using your picture to make a smaller circular or squared version of it. An avatar is useful because it doesn’t take much space on a web page, which leaves you with more space where you can write your branding content. As mentioned earlier, in this tutorial, you will learn how to create one.
If you have your own website, the right place to post avatar is on you “About Us” page, where you can actually write your business mission Statement, your vision, and your biography; all on one page. Again, when it comes to your biography, telling your audience about yourself, your biggest accomplishments, education, talents, and what makes you an expert in your niche is highly is something you want to do right away, if you wish to gain credibility online.
Supposing that you are one of those people, whose goal is to start their own business and become their own bosses, you might convince yourself that because you are running your own business, you are the boss and don’t have to report to anyone. This is an error that some business owners do, which often lead to failure.
Actually, the conception of being your own boss is not completely true and this is why. When you are selling products or services, you are not really your own boss. Your customers, and all the parties you depend on to run your business are your bosses. For example, customers make purchasing decisions and have several options to choose from in your market. They can decide to buy from you or from someone else. Losing customers to competitors can put you out of business. So, you have to make sure that your customers are well educated about you and are satisfied with your brand. Therefore, consider your customers to be your bosses and keep them happy. To impress them, start by telling them something about you to convince them that you are the right person with whom they can do business. If you get to do this effectively, you will consequently gain their trust, attract them and, create long lasting business relationships with them. When you make good business decisions, your customer will also make favorable purchasing decisions and buy from you.
– With all these said, here is how you create your own avatar for free.
To make an avatar of yourself, you fist need to choose a picture of yourself that you would want to place on your website. Remember that your readers will be looking at your picture as they read your biography. It gives them the impression that you are right there talking to them, which might make them feel like they know you; even if they never met you in person. Additionally, it would make them trust you more and be willing to buy what you are selling.
Some people might choose to upload a regular photo of themselves on their “About me” page, which is fine, but it might take too much space or look unprofessional. To make your picture look professional and take less space, you should turn it into a smaller size avatar as you will learn in this lesson.
Hence, it is important to pick an appropriate picture for your type of audience. Remember “A picture is worth a thousand words.” Choose it carefully, and once you have chosen the right one, saved in and JPEG or GIF format. Then, you will have a choice to create a circular avatar or a squared one. In this free tutorial, we make a circular avatar as an example, but if you wish to make a squared one, when you get to the screen where you have to decide which shape you want, just select the squared option (you will understand this better when we get to that step in this lesson).
So, to make it easy for all beginners we’ll be using Picmonkey.com to edit your picture and design a circular avatar. Picmonkey.com provides you with a free picture editor; it will save you from spending money on expensive software for the same quality of picture editor. With Picmonkey.com, besides editing photos, you can also create collage, design logos, and create your own banner ads for your business. Please note that PicMonkey.com also offer paid premium services that might be of interest to you. To explore those offers, you just need to create and account.
However, later on, in this tutorial you will still have an option to learn how to created basic logos, and banners for free. Right now, let focus on designing you circular avatar.
Step 1: Go to www.picmonkey.com and click on “Edit” as illustrated below. This will allow you to access the folder where you saved your picture.
Step 2: Once you browse to the folder where your picture was saved, select it and click “Open.” That picture will come up on Picmonkey.com screen as shown in the image below.
Note: The picture above is used just as an example, and it is a random image from www.freedigitalphotos.net. You can use any picture you want. It can either be a picture of yourself or that of an object that you want your audience to see. The way you brand yourself depends on your type of business and the message you want to convey. As explained earlier, choose your pictures accordingly. As you can see, there are more than one persons in this picture. You can crop the picture and get only your face to show in your avatar just like it is explained in step 3.
Step 3: The tools and the editing menu you will need are shown on the left side of the screen. To crop your picture, click on the “Crop” tab. (See the red arrow.)
Step 4: Click on the dropdown menu arrow to see the options available on the menu.
Step 5: From the available menu, select the option “Square.”
Step 6: Please notice the square around the picture. Click and drag the corners of this square toward the part of the picture you want to include in your avatar. As you drag the square inward, the numbers of pixels for the width and the height under the “Actual Size” menu go down, and they go up when you drag the corners outward.
Step 7: In the image below, the square size is now adjusted to show only on person’s face; the other people in this picture are left out. So, once you adjust the width and height to your desired size, click “Apply.” That is the green button you see on the left side of the screen.
Step 8: At this point, you only have one person’s face showing in a squared frame. To crop it further and create a circular avatar, click on the “Frame” icon on the most left menu on the screen. (A blue button that says “Frame” will appear when you hover over the frame icon.)
Step 9: On the Frame menu that appear, click “Rounded Corners” as you see in the picture below.
Step 10: On the next page, you will see a side bar right below the words “Corner Medium.” Slide that slide bar button all the way to the right side to make a circular frame around your picture just like you see in the image below. Make sure to check the “Transparent Corners” box to remove the squared corners from your picture and make it look circular.
Step 11: Click “Apply.” (That is the green button below the words “Transparent Corners.”
Step 12: On the next screen, click “Save” as shown in this image.
Step 13: From the dropdown menu next to the “File Name,” select “png” to save your file in this format and make sure that your avatar will be circular. (If you don’t save your avatar as a “png” file, it won’t be circular.)
Step 14: If you want, you can click into one of the “Dimension” boxes shown below to change the dimension of your avatar and make it bigger as you see down here.
Click “Save to my Computer” (The green button) to save your avatar into a folder that you create on your computer. On the dropdown menu besides this green button, you also have options to save your avatar in a OneDrive, or a Dropbox, if you wish to do so.
Congratulations! As a beginner in online marketing, you just created your own avatar. You can use this circular photo of yourself on your “About me” page, your “Reply” page in your blog comment area to communicate with your audience. Having your avatar on these pages seems to be a simple strategy, but it is very powerful. It will surely give customers an idea of who you are and make them trust you enough to be willing to do business with you.
– Writing your Biography
Keep it simple and straight to the points you want to make. Remember that you need to convey the right message to the right crowd. For example, if you are an expert in both “Fashion Design” and in “Home Interior Decoration,” and you are writing you biography for “Fist Home Buyers,” you would want to stress out the fact that you are an expert in Interior design and elaborate on it more than you would for your expertise in Fashion Design.
As a matter of fact, it would not hurt to briefly mention that you are also an expert in Fashion Design, as it would tell your readers that you can “wear several hats” in your professional life and get any job done effectively. However, in this example, it is very important that you emphasize your education, work experience, and accomplishments as a Home Interior Decorator because your message is targeting people who just bought their first home, or who are planning to. Normally, at this point, such market segment would be more interested in hiring an interior designer; not a Fashion Designer. This is a problem that you won’t have if you only have one area of expertise.
Anyway, if you are educated in more than one field of studies and have experience in several niches, it is up to you to determine for which market segment it would be appropriate to emphasize all of your areas of expertise, and for which one it makes sense to emphasize only one of them. (For example, my targeted market is made of people who are trying to start or already have their own business. I have two Masters’ Degrees of Science in Business Administration (MBA) and in Information Technology Management (ITM). In this case, it is appropriate for me to emphasize my expertise in both fields, because they are both relevant to my market segment. This is because various technologies are used to improve performance and increase productivity in any type of business. Therefore, as you can see in my “About Us” page on this website, it makes sense for me to emphasize my expertise in both Business and Information Technology.)
In general, you need to sell the right expertise to the wright market segment. Again, write about your expertise, education, work experience, and accomplishment in simple words that everybody can understand.
Attention**** Now that you know how to brand yourself, if you are interested in learning how you can open your own business online and create a second source of income, just follow the link below to learn how!
Designing a Logo for your Business: