Four Branding Channels You Haven’t Thought Of

We have talked frequently in this space about a number of common channels that can be leveraged for personal branding. These channels include appearing on TV, writing a book, publishing articles in national newspapers and magazines, and more. Each of these channels represents a different way to connect with an audience, but they all have the same fundamental goal—to build credibility, increase visibility, and position the business owner as a celebrity-expert within his or her market.

Of course, those are far from the only channels available to a business owner. Today, we are going to take a look at several less-common personal branding channels—could any of them be leveraged for your business?

1)     Your business card. Your business card plays a powerful role in determining the first impression you create when you meet an individual face-to-face. Take a moment and evaluate your card—does it stand out in any way… or is it just like every other card? Consider using a different card stock or an eye-catching design to reflect your brand and help you stand out from the crowd.

2)     Hobby organizations. As part of a hobby organization (such as a poker club or a group of R/C enthusiasts), you have an instant connection with other members. Of course, you shouldn’t take advantage of the opportunity and aggressively promote your business, but you should ensure that group members know what you do and how you can potentially help them. Work to build your brand consistently and tactfully—over time, these types of relationships can pay huge dividends.

3)     YouTube. YouTube (and other video hosting services) provide an opportunity to connect with your market and a phenomenally low cost. Whether it is creating a video blog or simply providing more information about your business, take advantage of this medium. As you’re doing so, remember to stay true to your brand. If you’re building a brand that relies on energy and enthusiasm, it needs to show up on your videos as well!

4)     Service to the community. Whether it is supporting your local place of worship or joining others to clean up a local park, giving back to the community can be a great way to build your personal brand—in addition to being a good thing to do! Find an organization or an initiative that you are passionate about, and get involved. For some, this may mean lending professional expertise (i.e. accounting advice), or it may mean rolling up your sleeves and personally getting busy. Whatever the circumstances may be, make sure that those you are serving with understand what you do. People prefer to do business with others that they know and trust, and the relationships you create while working towards a common cause are valuable.

Personal branding doesn’t have to mean appearing on TV or writing a book—though such tactics are very effective. The channels we’ve discussed today are a great starting point as you seek to maximize exposure, but the list is by no means exhaustive. Think outside the box and do your best to communicate your brand to your target market—whatever that may entail!