As a follow-up to a recent post on the How to Build a Brand Facebook page, I think it’s worthwhile to stress that though successful entrepreneurs’ business habits do vary from person to person, there are some behaviours that show up in patterns—practices that all seem to lead in the right direction: UP.
Since you’re learning how to build a brand, it would make sense for you to emulate some of those success-promoting behaviours, right? I definitely think that would be in your best interest…but instead of just listing the habits, I’m going to expand upon them, to interject a bit of the How to Build a Brand wisdom that Miles and I have gathered over the years.
Habits of Highly Successful Entrepreneurs Teach us How to Build a Brand
For the most part, the world’s most successful entrepreneurs all engage in these daily habits:
- Create a Routine. We often talk about systemisation. This is a way to organise, create procedure and delegate the tasks necessary for building your brand. Everything should have a system. This promotes efficiency and ensures that things get done. But how about the tasks that are all you? How can you make sure that it all gets accomplished, and that you still have time, energy and mind space for yourself? Systemise your own day. Create a routine and stick to it. Before you know it, tasks will become habitual and your entire day, week, month and year will run more smoothly.
- Keep the Mornings for the Toughest Projects. Procrastination is one of the most unproductive habits you can adopt. Every day, vow to get the things most important to building your brand done first. These things are, often, the most difficult things, too. Psychologists say that 7 to 11 a.m. is the best time frame in which to express your passion and to be creative. These two things are essential to building a unique brand, so use this to your advantage.
- Work Out and Meditate. Try to connect with at least one person every day at the gym, and your work-out sessions can double as networking events. Exercise increases blood flow to the brain, enhancing cognitive power and creativity, and it has also been clinically shown to reduce stress. Now who among us couldn’t use some of all that? Physical exercise can also improve self image, which increases confidence in all areas, including the board room. And let’s not forget the boost in energy it provides. Meditation will help you to rediscover your passion (your WHY), especially when life gets hectic and you begin to lose yourself in technicalities. It also improves our general mental and physical health, relieves stress and improves decision-making ability.
- Give a Head Start to Tomorrow, Today. No day can feel productive when you start out in the hole. Every night, straighten up your desk. Make a to-do list for the morning. Set the coffee maker on auto-brew so it’s ready for you. In general, do what you can the night before the get ahead for the next day. This will not only help you to get more done in the morning, during your brain’s most productive hours, it will lend the feeling that you are generally “ahead”…of your to-do list and the competition.
- Schedule Time for Revenue-Generating Activities. Trudging along at a steady pace generally leads to one thing: The Same Thing. When you schedule occasional out-of-the-ordinary events—designed to reach out to a new audience, to serve your existing audience in a new or better way, or to launch a new product or service—you’ll not only build your brand and your brand’s image, you will make strides toward increasing your brand’s revenue. This is not only essential for growth, it’s crucial for the added profit that will afford you the free time you need and deserve.
- Track your Progress. How’s your business doing? Is it growing? Is it competitive? Is it expanding into new areas? How do you know? Or don’t you know? To strive to build a successful business, and then avoid analysing its progress…well, that’s just silly. You need to know what’s working and what’s not. You need to know who and what are responsible for bringing the largest concentrations of income into your business. You need to identify brand advocates and distance yourself from those who are bringing you down. Take a look, react, and then commit to identifying patterns so that you can become proactive.
- Refresh yourself with Quality Family Time. Run full-steam-ahead without breaks, and your body and mind will create breaks for you—in the forms of stress, illness…and even nervous breakdowns. Ask any businessperson, and he or she will be able to recall pushing themselves to this point or watching a colleague make this mistake. Commit, at least once per week, to shutting down all digital communication and focussing on the relationships that you cherish. Not only is this good for the quality and longevity of those relationships, it’s good for your business. You’ll come back to it stronger, more passionate and more motivated to build that brand.
- Encourage Team to Provide Solutions, not Problems. Positive reinforcement isn’t just a technique for training dogs. It works for humans, too. Now, I’m not trying to reduce your team members to people that you “train”…I’m simply pointing out that when you create a brand culture that emphasises moving forward, rather than stagnating or dragging backward, then you have a brand that everyone will feel good about. Allow your team members to be creative. Give them voices and the freedom to make mistakes. Involve them in decisions and take notice to all the good things they do on a daily basis. When they feel like they belong and that they’re valuable to your operation, they will adopt the brand culture and become brand advocates (i.e. your most valuable assets).
- Segregate Each Day for a Separate Business Activity. Every day should have its own routine; however, it can also be helpful to designate a day of the week in which you tackle those less-routine, but highly essential, tasks. Maybe Monday is cold-call day, Tuesday is networking day, Wednesday is customer care day, Thursday is affiliate collaboration day…and so on. Adopting this practice will not only promote the completion of tasks, it will make the effectiveness of each aspect simpler to track.
- Continue Learning. When learning ceases, so does growth. When you stop learning, you smash all chances of your business evolving, broadening and diversifying. The type of learning that will benefit your brand may include industry developments, technological advancements, marketing trends, consumer developments and more. Commit to learning something new every month. Attend seminars. Subscribe to podcasts. Read, read, read…and then after you’re finished incorporating what you’ve learnt into your own brand strategy, repurpose all that’s applicable to your audience and take it them, to build trust and perceptions of expertise for your brand.
Do you think you can incorporate these habits into your life? Can you see how each one has the potential to contribute, in a massive way, to your success as an entrepreneur, business owner or brand manager? Well, then you’re on your way to learning how to build a brand, the right way.
Now it’s time to tighten up that plan with some targeted advice for how to build a brand, tailored specifically to your start-up or established business. The B.R.A.N.D. Accelerator, an exclusive How to Build a Brand programme, is being offered to those highly motivated entrepreneurs who wish to establish or expand their fast-growth businesses in a way that gets it done right the first time around. Learn more about the programme here.