Find Your Niche, Build Your Brand & Network

Find Your Niche, Build Your Brand & Network

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Whether you are an individual, a startup, an existing small business, or a large corporation, you need to network. However, it can be very tough putting yourself out there. Your individuality is what makes people want to get to know you. If you were a business, you need to have a product or service that is incredibly niche in order to succeed right away. If your business is not operating in a niche area, what you’re selling either needs to be the best, the cheapest, or the most popular. When networking, you need to understand that you are building a brand, a personal brand.

 

Your individuality is what makes people want to get to know you. If you were a business, you need to have a product or service that is incredibly niche in order to succeed right away. If the business is not operating in a niche area, what they are selling either needs to be the best, the cheapest, or most popular. When networking, you need to understand that you are building a brand a personal brand, and what you are selling is yourself. You need to ask yourself, “If I am selling myself, what exactly am I selling?”.

 

 At the beginning of your self-discovery, you will be faced with the same three challenges a business faces. You will be competing to be the best in your expertise. If you aren’t the best at what you do, then you can either provide your skills available at the cheapest cost, or you can try to bring your popularity to the table. However, when you are first starting out, no one knows who you are and instant popularity is hard to achieve.  As the world continues to transition into a world more dominated by social media, the idea of “building a personal brand” is becoming more crucial. I believe that best way to network, and the best way to build our brand, is to be niche, be special, be unique, and be yourself.

 

Before you break ground on the shiny new building that is your personal brand, you must identify what foundation will be laid, and the framework that will follow. People have tried to build personal brands on failed architecture. They exaggerated expertise, undersold themselves, or entered the popularity game at a huge disadvantage. You, first, need to take a look in the mirror and ask yourself, “who am I” before you attempt to build a personal brand. Some people will be able to answer this question faster than others, but you need to understand who you are before you can move to where you want to go. If you aren’t the “schmoozer” that is always on, that is okay. Be who you are, in every moment, and you will attract the right people for your business.

 

You may need to break out the old pro and con list. You need to identify what you are good at, what needs improvement, and what you enjoy doing. Just because certain professions or personalities bring people a lot of success, you do not have to duplicate their approach. If you are not doing something you enjoy, you will not enjoy talking about it, you will dislike the people you are around, and networking in that area will be incredibly hard.

 

Ask yourself, “What do I enjoy." How would you spend your day if it were up to you? Is this reflective of your personal brand identity? It should be. After you discover yourself, and begin taking on the task of building your brand, you can easily network and make connections in any skill set, even if you are shy. You will find people who enjoy the same things as you, and talking to them will be easy. Too many people are not doing what comes naturally to them, and hate their current position. Networking is important in any field, but it starts with the decision to be honest with yourself and finding your niche. After that, you can build your personal brand and enjoy a life of networking with the people who matter most to you and your future.

 

Image source: https://b-i.forbesimg.com/johnhall/files/2013/05/shutterstock_1018067652.jpg