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June 18, 2018

You are a brand!

People will follow you, interact with you and it will benefit not just you but the brands you create and work with.

That is why we created our first ebook “The First Time Entrepreneurs Guide to Managing Your Social Media Presence” and the reactions have been really positive.

That’s why we wanted to give out the intro and first chapter of the book!

Keep reading to learn some of the basics of building yourself as a brand, people to learn from, and start building your following on social media today.

Getting Started With Social Media

I started using twitter before I was a real entrepreneur, back when I was just a student taking a B. Comm in university. I went from posting pictures of my food to posting about things that could build my brand….and pictures of my food.

I realized then that if I wanted to start something (a job, operating a company, anything) I needed to establish that I was an authority in my area (or at least that I knew something), and I needed to find out who the other authorities in my area were so that I could learn from them.

I spent time curating content about the newest online trends that everyone was talking and started engaging and following authorities online. As a result of this activity, when I ran into them, I could talk shop with them. I could have an informed opinion. And this act was what eventually lead to me developing a following and a personal brand on social media.

I will start by saying right now that the channels I use in my personal life are the same ones that I use professionally for my brand, I do not believe in having “professional” accounts. I’m a believer that entrepreneurs need to be totally
transparent and honest across all channels. I mean, just imagine how annoying it would be to find out that there are 2 of the same person you follow and they are different.

You would hate that. I would hate that.
Your potential customers would hate that.

When I follow people like Aaron Levie, Danielle Morrill, Ryan Hoover, or Neil Patel, I do it because they are not just brands – they are people. They are also a good measurement for how we all view the companies they own.

There’s been a noticeable shift from judging businesses on their merits alone to including public perceptions of the entrepreneurs at the helm as part of this analysis.
Sujan Patel

As an entrepreneur, this is an extra benefit, but also an extra burden: you are a brand, one that people need to buy into if they are going to work with you or invest in you. You may also be the marketing guy, the sales guy, the coder, and the guy who buys the TP, so you’ll need to do this work efficiently. That’s where this guide comes in handy.

I spent years shaping other people’s brands and this has allowed me to have much more insight into how I shaped my own, and how to break it all down so that you can replicate it and put your own spin on it. In this book, I’m going to share with you a few key things:

  • The mindset that entrepreneurs need when managing personal accounts
  • How social media can help you grow professionally
  • The best tools manage your social media presence effectively
  • Strategies for achieving content marketing excellence as an individual
  • How to promote yourself without looking sleazy
  • How to develop trust and a reputation with influencers

Chapter One: You Are A Brand

The first step to understanding social media is recognizing that you are a brand. Your Twitter account, Facebook account, LinkedIn account and yes, even your Snapchat account are extensions of you as an individual.

The way in which you carry yourself on Twitter is the way in which a lot of people will perceive you. It’s important to understand this and embrace this as fact. My bio on Twitter clearly states that I’m a lover of beards, bacon and all things social. This isn’t a lie. It’s the truth. And it’s my truth and it’s become a part of my brand over the last few years.

Tim Ferris. Lewis Howes. Everette Taylor.

These are entrepreneurs who have become big brands themselves. Some have even become more followed than the brands they work with. Everette has 28.8k followers on Twitter. Stickermule and Buttonfrog, for which he is the CMO, have 14.5 and 14.8 followers respectively.

Obviously, this becomes more likely with more ventures under your belt (such as GrowthHackers.com in Everette's case), but even from the start, you can benefit from understanding the fact that YOU are a brand.

Every tweet you send. Every post you make. Everything you do is going to contribute to your reputation and ultimately influence the story people tell and hear when they see your name. This is the concept of personal branding 101.

Regardless of age, regardless of position, regardless of the business we happen to be in, all of us need to understand the importance of branding. We are CEOs of our own companies: Me Inc. To be in business today, our most important job is to be head marketer for the brand called You. It’s that simple — and that hard. And that inescapable.
– Tom Peters. (The Brand Called You)

When you know realize that you are a brand then you can take better actions to build that brand, what are its themes, it’s visuals. I focus on having a giant beard and wearing the same style of clothing at events, Ryan Hoover hasn’t changed his profile picture in over 5 years. He believes that this image creates a standard and recognizable image for him, and it works, I always recognize him regardless of the network. Whatever techniques you choose to use remember to stay current and consistent.

Hope you enjoyed the first chapter, want to keep reading? Pick up The First Time Entrepreneur’s Guide to Social Media and use code hustle blog to save 50% 


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