Solopreneurs are challenged all the time. It's some scary shit to put yourself out there by yourself. No posse to back you up. Branding can add to that fear without warning. It's understandable. You're not sure what's supposed to go into the whole branding process anyway. Maybe you weren't told that you brand based on your future and not your present. If you're like the old me, all you're concerned about is that next customer or client.
As I observe, study, and learn I have a better understanding of where the fear comes from. It's the constant pressure to measure up. You're instructed to do analysis on your "competition" so you can stand out from them. No wonder you're fucking scared. The weight gets even heavier because you're a business of one comparing your brand to businesses that were established before the digital age.
What I know for sure is that you're one person in a world of billions. Until you scale to take over the world, there are a slew of your folx in that crowd of billions. The more you scale down into your niche the more you'll realize there are more folx available than you have the capacity to work with. With that, let's look at those fears and fix that shit.
Remember My Name
An unspoken truth of having a business is that you want to be remembered. Some folx will do shady shit just to be remembered. What you did was make your brand personal. You were afraid people wouldn't remember all your hard work if you didn't put your name on it.
Naming your business after you is the safe and easy thing to do. It takes little thought and a lot of courage. The courage is based on the fact that if you fuck up, and folx are waiting for you fuck up, that's when you're most memorable. Some folx are just haters.
Our bbq spot used my husband's nickname growing up, Bigmista. It was a name he had long before I met him. When we decided to shut down the business so I could pursue my dream, we didn't put it up for sale. Folx wanted to buy it, but we turned it down because it was too personal. If they had offered us a big enough number maybe that would have changed.
If you wanna be remembered, be remembered for the work you do, not some insecure shit scares you. Folx like Mandela and Malcolm X built reputations for their work they did. They are not brands. They are men.
We simply attempt to be fearful when others are greedy and to be greedy only when others are fearful. Warren Buffett
Don't Separate You Who From Your Do
Putting your name on something makes it's personal. Business is not personal unless it's between friends. Branding is psychological and not enough people know that. It's a mind game. You decided to make the game about you instead of what you do. No wonder your have imposter syndrome. You think you have to be all the things to all the people with money.
Building a brand with your name, with your favorite colors, and your favorite fonts is a you thing. It makes you feel some kinda way. That's psychological. That leads to you taking shit personally when someone says no thank you. You feel as if they're rejecting you. And in a sense they are because you want everyone to like what you like.
Separating your who from your do begins with separating your business brand from your personal brand. You can wear your signature color, but does it really speak to folx on a website? You may like swirls in your life, but can folx read your script shit when you're designing your website? Yes, you're a party of one (right now). Separating the brands will give you some of the courage you need, not to take business personal.
Overwhelmed With Offers
Your final fearful flaw is having everything but the kitchen sink to offer. Offering to much on the front end overwhelms the senses. You're afraid of saying no, so you say yes to everything. Trying to keep up with that level of crazy is crazy. I'm sure you had the "what do do you wanna eat" conversation. There are so many choices and the only thing you can do is say no to what we don't want. Crazy, right?
People say they want it all, but all is to much to handle. When you offer the good, bad, and ugly of what you do, folx will walk away because they can't decide. On your end, you're with confusion of what to offer.You have so much shit, you you still haven't really perfected anything. Being pretty good at something doesn't qualify you for premium pricing.
Then you overwhelm yourself with entrepreneurship. Instead of building one quality business, you manage a bunch of little ones. Adding on different businesses because one isn't making enough to sustains you, takes away from the one you could do well. I hear you saying, "But I'm good at a lotta things." That's you saying that, not the folx with money in hand.
Fear can be good when you're walking past an alley at night or when you need to check the locks on your doors before you go to bed, but it's not good when you have a goal and you're fearful of obstacles. Queen Latifah
Don't be afraid to offer that one great thing. It's where you're starting. It's why I value brand strategy so much. Brand strategy leads to brand architectures which is the key to your growth. You're not conditioned to think about those things as a solopreneur because the cool kids don't want you to catch up.
It's time to stop running your business transaction to transaction because you're scared. Step into your role as brand leader and impact the world. So if you're tired of running scared and don't know how to make it stop, schedule a Brand Ego Check. You're your own person and I want you to do work you're proud of.
Ghetto Country Brandmother®
author - speaker - HBIC
Certified Brand Strategist, Business & Life Coach with a degree in Business. She is also a former bbq restaurant owner & certified bbq judge.
She is making it her personal mission connect the dots of life, brand & business one brandbaby® at a time.