BRANDING part III – for contractors
When you’ve done everything regarding your brand and marketing it, is it time to sit and wait for it to develop on its own?
Of course not, the real job is about to start.
There are few things you’ll need to perform in order to keep your brand visible and to keep potential and previous clients remember you when they need service you provide.
Maintaining your brand is an ongoing process. As you grow, so will your brand. Each new contract, skill set and course changes your brand slightly. Maintaining all materials in your branding kit is the key because as an Independent your brand is your most important asset.
Be the brand
Your brand is based on your values and skills and as a result of this, it’s important that you sustain these qualities in your work and with how you interact with clients in general.
Social media is a great place to showcase your skills and engage with potential clients, it can also be a place where unhappy clients openly discuss what they didn’t like about you or your service.
The true measure of your brand is your reputation. Notice how people introduce you to others. Ask them what they think your top brand attributes and core strengths are and compare it with what you think.
Ask clients for feedback, and make sure to take it seriously.
Be prepared to change things that don’t fit in your idea of your brand and service.
Do a SWOT analysis
Strengths – Weaknesses – Opportunities – Threats
Take a study to identify your internal strengths and weaknesses, as well as its external opportunities and threats.
Strengths and weaknesses speak to your potential value to an employer. Opportunities and threats help you foresee what you’re facing in next career steps.
SWOT is an invaluable personal branding exercise that also helps prepare you for interviewing and future career growth and stability.
Staying consistent throughout your marketing efforts is a great way to have potential clients remembers your brand. This means sticking with the same visual components, design elements and message throughout your online and offline network.
As an independent contractor, you must remember that you are representing your brand at all times, even on personal social media pages. When you own a business your personal and your professional life go hand in hand. Failure in acting as such, can lead to a perception of dishonesty or lack of trustworthiness to clients.
Build a reputation
Making an impression is more valuable than simply getting people to remember your company’s name.
Position yourself and keep working on building reputation.
Share valuable industry information that educates or informs your clients through your blog, offer industry knowledge through online forums, speak at networking events or forums, encourage word of mouth promotion by requesting referrals from clients with whom you have established strong relationships, find trusted project managers, advisors and fellow independent contractors to advocate on your behalf. Be the one who is trusted.
Analyse the competition
Discover others in the marketplace is and what distinguishes you from them.
See what they have to offer and compare it with your offer. Emphasise things that make you better hiring choice and what differentiates you from the competition, notice the techniques they use, or rare services they offer.
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, with 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.