So how can you build your brand in an innovative way that generates meaningful consumer interest and industry buzz? From infographics and Q&A opportunities to live streaming and novel advertising solutions, there are several lesser-known ways you can expand the reach of your brand.
Below, 12 entrepreneurs from YEC discuss some of the more non-traditional media channels any business can use to strengthen their brand and appeal to a larger audience.
Quora is an amazing question-and-answer site where you can provide advice to entrepreneurs (and the rest of the world, too). Find questions that you have unique insight on and write detailed answers. If your responses are well-received, they’ll be “voted up” and your brand will earn a lot of attention.
There is so much information thrown at us each day and there’s only so much text we can read and retain — enter the infographic. An infographic is eye-catching, interesting and useful. Once you create it, you can add it to your blog articles, post it on social media, and contact journalists and bloggers within your industry who may find it interesting for some free promotion.
3. Dynamic Signs
Utilizing a truly unique approach when creating a sign or an ad has a strong influence on the top-of-mind effect of the ad. There are many great examples of ads that have gone above and beyond when it comes to outdoor signs. Integrate them with the landscape of the local city and the environment.
Whisper is a dark social media site that is now using advertising and allows businesses to have accounts. It certainly gets to an audience that is no longer using traditional social media sites and gives you an interesting way to build your brand with somewhat anonymous posts. Your brand could be included in the graphic element while the text on top of it provides a benefit.
I have obtained nearly one million views using SlideShare. It integrates through LinkedIn and gives you the ability to share your professional ideas with an intimate audience of followers. Followers can comment and expand on your ideas and the editing is free. If you remove your attachment to the idea and view the SlideShare as free editing by your audience, you are able to amplify exposure.
6. Live Broadcasting
Lately, I have been testing out live broadcasting like Facebook Live, YouTube Live, and even Instagram Live. These are such powerful tools for building your brand that not enough people are using. You can’t get any more authentic than a raw, unedited, live video broadcast. Show viewers what your brand is really about and stand out from the crowd through these new features on social media.
Go on podcasts, especially podcasts in your industry. Podcasters are constantly on the hunt for compelling guests, and everyone likes an underdog. So if you’ve got a great story to tell, you can do so via podcasts. You’ll be surprised how many influencers listen to podcasts and you’ll be able to cite them as proof of why you’re a thought leader.
8. Toll-Free Phone Number
Too many of us are obsessed with how our brands look visually, be it on our websites or on social media. But when was the last time you considered the impact you could have by getting a toll-free phone number for your business. It’s cheap and you only pay when people call you. The subtle message to your customers is that you want to speak with them — and you’ll even pay for the call.
Medium is a great place to deliver the content you want to get out to a large audience that is now using the platform to get information on a wide range of topics. It’s a place to build your thought leadership position.
10. Local Media
So many entrepreneurs focus on the big picture and sometimes forgot about the opportunities right in their backyard. If you are an entrepreneur from a smaller city, like myself (Pittsburgh), reach out to local media outlets and become a hometown hero. You can build a ton of credibility by being the go-to in your industry in your local area.
11. Cheddar TV
Cheddar TV is a live streaming online media platform. It covers finances, entrepreneurship, business and other topics. Its content is also syndicated to other major news channels and can help with getting one’s foot in the door to more traditional TV appearances.
12. Industry-Specific News Outlets
We saw the amount of traffic coming to our blog skyrocket when Ruby Weekly picked up one of the blog posts that our senior developer published. Since then we’ve started submitting blog posts to highly targeted technology newsletters that cover related subjects. DevOps, AWS, etc. — they all have their audience. It positioned our brand as a thought leader in technology.
How to Build a Successful Brand through Content and Social Media
If you want to build a successful personal brand or even one for your business, it’s all about the content you provide and how you engage with your audience. It’s way too easy to throw up a website or blog and think you are going to make a difference with your content and message. This in itself won’t be as effective as you think. There are currently more than a billion active websites and blogs on the internet today — and that’s a lot of content you need to compete with! In addition to creating your own content and platform, you also need to get active on the various media outlets, engagement groups and Q&A sites mentioned above. There are billions of users spread across them and they are just waiting to hear what you have to say!