Many HR professionals set up on their own every year, with varying degrees of success. Some do it just under their own name, some have a company name, some have websites, some don’t, and the websites vary in quality. Our consultants all keep an eye on their local competition, as do we!
There is undoubtedly plenty of work out there for everyone, I’m confident of that, but there’s also lots of competition so how do you make yourself stand out from the rest and ensure the work comes to you?
There are lots of things you can do (and these are all part of our marketing training), but one of the ways you can channel work to you rather than your competitors is with an effective brand.
A brand conveys a message to consumers that influences their decision to buy or not buy. It creates an impression of an organisation, sending a message about its priorities, ethos, approach to whatever its line of business is and how it treats customers. Confusing, non-existent, unappealing or inconsistent branding all send the wrong message to your potential clients.
But despite all this, brand is something that many self-employed professionals overlook, particularly in the early stages. They are more concerned about getting out there and looking for clients, and worrying about what marketing activities they should be doing. These things are important, but a good brand can make a huge difference to the success (or otherwise) of marketing activities, so overlooking it can have a negative impact in the long-term.
We have developed a series of brand values and a brand profile and identity after working with a branding specialist. These are designed to reflect our business and to engage with clients and potential clients as well as inspire partners. The development involved research into what clients and contacts are looking for, as well as a very clear understanding of our business priorities in order to determine how to use branding to communicate these priorities most effectively.
New contacts, clients, potential clients and potential referrers get an impression of face2faceHR when they meet one of our consultants. If the impression they get from the individual is supported, underlined and enhanced by the brand they encounter when looking at our website, online presence and other materials, the overall level of comfort they have in the business is improved. Which improves success rates for our consultants.
Developing a successful brand takes an investment of time and often money as well, but if you’re setting up on your own and not working with an existing brand like us, do consider prioritising effective branding early on. It will pay dividends later!