When setting up your business, you may have thought about your brand. You may have pondered about the 'voice' of your company, the tone, the style, and how you want to convey your business to the rest of the world.
Of course, it's really important to get your brand right, and to create a business that looks professional, approachable and trustworthy.
However, it's just as important to be authentic. Although Polonius was a relatively unintelligent character in Shakespeare's Hamlet, he made one very important point: 'To thine own self be true.'
There's nobody quite like you
Never forget that you are an integral part of your business. After all, it's you who came up with all the fantastic, innovative ideas, and you're the one who represents your business and gives it an identity.
Don't fall into the trap of copying a competitor or someone famous in your field. It's a good thing to take inspirations from those who are successful. However, pretending to be someone you're not will only lead to frustrations and a sense of misalignment. You will attract clients who are not a good fit for your business. And that's not surprising, considering that you did attract these clients by imitating someone else in the first place.
The fear-factor of revealing yourself in your business
Many entrepreneurs worry about letting their personalities shine through in their business. After all, if someone says something negative in response, it will be a personal attack, rather than just a negative comment on your business.
The important thing to keep in mind is this: You won't please everyone. Yes, you may inadvertently offend someone by saying the things you say and doing the things you do. However, it's more likely that more people will warm to your authenticity than if you remain behind a mask of bland professionalism.
It's especially important to allow your natural personality to shine through when communicating with your potential clients. Whether it's at a networking event or posting a comment on your Facebook page, it is your chance to use your personality to reinforce who you are and what your business stands for.
If it appeals to you... it will appeal to your ideal clients
On the most fundamental level, people do business with people they like. Remember that your ideal clients are likely to be people who think like you. After all, what drove you to set up the business in the first place? Chances are that it was because you were passionate about the services you offer or the products you sell.
The people out there actively seeking your services and products are like you. They're also passionate about these things, because they want to buy them! As they're similar to you, it's highly likely that they'll identify with you and want to do business with you.
Experiment to find the right balance
Of course, it's inadvisable to share your eventful Friday night out with the girls on your Twitter business account (particularly that photo. You know the one I mean...)
Exactly how much you want to share is up to you to decide. Start gently, and experiment with what feels right to you. If you aim to never betray your instincts or try to be someone you're not, you'll find that your clients respond positively to your genuine, relatable approach. Remember, it all goes back to those immortal words... 'to thine self be true'.
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You can find Mui at www.muitsun.com creating beautiful websites for female entrepreneurs and helping them shine.
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