Investing in yourself and your brand will be the two most profitable investments that you will ever make. The best way to achieve a better quality of life and to make your brand and yourself a success, is to place a priority on investing in both your personal and professional growth. A solid brand and personal image helps others to get a better understanding of who you are, what you stand for, and what you have to offer. It isn’t all about getting more clients or doing stuff for the gram. It’s about building and positioning yourself in order to attract the RIGHT people that are aligned with your values and visions, potential clients, and it’s also about creating a routine for yourself that allows you to manage your brand and also have a personal life.
At the beginning of the year, I made a decision to rebrand and start promoting the work that I do. I have got to a stage in my career and my craft where I started to think I’m pretty awesome at what I do! I’m an interior, graphic and brand designer, if I don’t promote my work how will I attract clients?
So for these reasons (and others) I decided to invest and believe in myself and my brand to post regularly on social media. Don’t get me wrong at first, I was petrified! For years I always wondered if I was good enough or if my work was up to the Instagram standard; but I didn’t let the fear of that get the better of me. Building my brand in this digital era has been one of the smartest decisions I have ever made. Today I’m not only fulfilled by doing what I love, but investing in myself (saying no to fear) and my brand (showcasing my work) has allowed me to work with some great and influential people.
So, if you’re feeling the way I used to feel and don’t know where to begin below are four tips I implemented (and still do) which helped me to invest in myself and in my brand:
Goals are what take us forward in life. They are the first steps to every journey we take and are also our last. It’s really important that you understand the significance and importance of goal-setting and apply this knowledge in everything. When I first started setting goals, I was a bit stuck because I didn’t know where to start from or what I wanted to achieve in the next couple of months. I then realized the more I thought about it, the harder it was for me. The thing that helped me overcome this was setting short term goals first. So, if you’re having trouble start small and gradually work your way up. Don’t forget to track your goals - track your progress through the day and/or week.
Build your network
Connect with people online AND offline. Sometimes, we get so wrapped up in building a social media presence that we forget to interact and connect with real people in real life. Visit seminars, events and workshops. Hand out your business cards at these functions and build connections with people offline. You can find tons of networking events by searching Eventbrite.com etc. Don’t get me wrong social media is great but use it efficiently. Utilise it by searching hashtags, sending a direct message to start conversation with other brands and people you want to connect with, and most importantly PROMOTE YOUR WORK!
Invest in your talent/craft
Invest, invest and invest some more. I’ve made numerous good and some bad investments in myself but each investment has taught me so much. Investing in your creativity can involve so many different things – learning a new language or technique, enrolling onto a course to develop your skills, attending a seminar/webinar, and even reading a new book. There is no right or wrong way to do so it all depends on you as a person, what you do and how you want to improve yourself.
And last but not least…
Learn how to say no
In the beginning stages of presenting your brand to any audience, other brands, friends and even family members will start asking you for favours to help promote their products, services, events etc. I’ve had my fair share of “collaborations” or in other words, “come work for free.” While some will be highly beneficial, some will be a waste of time. No matter what it is, if it does not align to your brand values, say NO. Don’t sell out, stay loyal to yourself and your audience.
I can promise this: when you take the time to go that extra mile for yourself and your brand, a world of new opportunities will open up for you. No one will invest in you or what you do, until you do so yourself. Investing in yourself and in your brand emotionally, physically, spiritually and financially, will allow you to become the best version of yourself. When you are the best version of yourself, you’ll be an attraction magnet to others!
Feel free to share which of the tips above you plan to implement this week. You can also contact me on one of the following:
LinkedIn: Rebecca Onafuye