BRANDING part I – for contractors
Why is branding important for contractors?
If you want to become successful independent contractor building your own brand is very important. It is a way for you to connect with your audience and way to build credibility.
As a contractor you must be CEO, manager and employee. You have to complete work correctly and on time, but you also need to find clients and make sure they remember you next time they need what you have to offer. Without proper branding and marketing, the latter is nearly impossible.
Branding is vital to your identity and is an important component to any client’s purchasing decision. For an independent contractor a solid personal brand goes a long way towards growth and success in your contracting career.
Marketing is the engine that drives a steady flow of opportunities into an independent professional’s project pipeline. It is essential for independents to create a strong brand and develop a plan for keeping that brand visible to reach potential clients, keep them engaged, and build a lasting relationship.
A strong brand tells your market who you are and what problems you solve, while marketing communicates your brand message and engages your target audience so you can acquire new clients.
When working as an independent contractor, it’s important to remember that you represent not only yourself, but also a company, a brand. This plays hand in hand with the success and growth of your business. Always make it as clear as possible what services you offer and be sure to advertise your area of expertise.
Creating a brand is not easy, but with the rise of social technologies personal branding is within reach for all. Your potential clients should have no difficulty finding out who you are and what you can do for them.
If you want to be successful independent contractor, you’ll have to market yourself. By building a strong, clearly defined and visible brand helps you to let everyone know who you are and what you do, to stay connected with clients, build credibility and trust, and you market yourself. Remember, you are the face of that brand.
There are few steps in branding yourself and we’ll try to explain all of them to make it easier for you.
Where to start?
As an independent contractor you are the brand and fully in control of what your brand stands for and what you want others to feel when they see your brand.
Your brand could be based on different things – your career passions, specialist skills or personal traits. It is all about figuring out who you are and what you do, while focusing on your strengths, passions and goals.
The first thing you need to work out is what your brand values are and let them guide you.
Find out what are your vision of the world and purpose – how you can help and make your vision happen.
Discover your passions – what do you most enjoy doing, and make them a part of your brand. Think about the activities, interests, or conversational topics that fascinates and energizes you and how do your passions converge with what you are best at doing.
Set your goals for next few years and make strategy how to get there while working.
Find what are your core strengths or motivated skills. Emphasize those and let the world know what things you are great at are.
Remember that your brand is your reputation – the perception of you held by the external world. It is the combination of personal attributes, values, drivers, strengths, and passions that distinguishes you from the others.
You need to identify those qualities and characteristics within you and communicate a crystal clear, consistent message across multiple channels – online and offline – designed to resonate with your target audience.
Determine where you want to fit in and learn what potential clients are looking for when they’re assessing candidates. Create your personal brand messaging around keywords and content that will attract them.
When you are creating your personal brand you should know and let your potential clients and the world know what are you known for, your particular skills and knowledge, if you finish projects on time, are you effective project leader or team player, do your previous clients often hire you back…
This will help you craft your pitch, your portfolio and eventually your brand identity. If you cannot effectively demonstrate to a project manager what makes you special, then you most likely won’t get hired or you will likely receive a lower hourly rate than you may have otherwise.
Get a Ultimate Contractor CV
In many cases, a standard CV won’t work for contractors. It just wont cut it. What you need is to ensure your CV is a Contractors CV, that it is strong in brand, your skills and experience that supports your niche. Being a generalist won’t work for contractors. You need a niche, and your niche is your brand.
Contract Job Search offer an outsourced Contractor CV service that delivers the type of guerilla marketing contractors need – its called The Ultimate Contractor CV and you can find out more by following the link.