It’s your goal to reach and gain customers, right?

Well, I was raised on the saying that “you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.” 

So, maybe flies aren’t the best analogy for your customers, but honey is a great substitute for authenticity in your personal branding strategy. It’s sweet and sticky; it makes people come back. It’s not like vinegar, the watery, acidic “fake” version you. 

Your customers can smell inauthenticity. 

So, how do you know that you’re representing yourself properly and that your brand is the best reflection of you?


Be yourself the right way

Yes, there’s a right way to be you. But don’t worry, it’s the most genuine way.

If you haven’t taken the time to figure out what makes you you, how will you be able to convey that to your customers?

Do you already know how other people describe you and your personality? If not, this blog can help you be more true to yourself and increase your brand’s customer loyalty.


The “You vs. Me” Trap

Us business entrepreneurs are eager to please our customers. And that’s a good thing. But, your customers also want to be able to connect with you and know who you really are.

Remember your favorite novel. Often, it’s hard to get into a story if the character doesn’t seem real or relatable. That’s how your customers are looking at your business: they need to know that they can relate to the person they’re buying from.


Are you Relatable?

Being relatable takes two things: consistency and imperfection.

In the 90’s, almost everyone liked the TV show “Friends.” Why? Well, the characters were so consistent with their personalities and, even though they’re all good looking with nice apartments (by New York standards) and fun lives, they were far from perfect.

So, now it’s your turn to be a friend to your customers.

Step 1: 

Phone up one to three of your best friends. Ask them to think about why they’re friends with you. Then, give them a day to email you three adjectives that really describe your personality. 

Now you know what attracts people to you.

Step 2:

Integrate the three adjectives you choose into your personal branding strategy. These adjectives will guide your style in everything you do. This is a little more difficult, but with practice, you’ll feel liberated to consistently be yourself.

•Do your blog posts and other communications materials sound like a person with those three adjectives? Think about your word choice, the tone of your written materials, and the mood they create.

•Do the colors of your website reflect your personality? Here is a brief overview of what different colors could be saying about you:





Energy and love



Vibrancy and movement



Calm and happy

Deceit and cowardice


Growth and nature

Envy and inexperience


Calmness and friendliness



Royalty and creativity



Elegant and sophisticated



Purity and virtue


Formal and professional

Moody and depressing


Reliable and earthy


•How is your website and business organized? If you’re a very rational, structured person, sharp lines and boxes make sense on your website and communications tools. If you’re more relaxed, a fluid look to your site might be better.

•In person, do you represent your three strongest adjectives? How can you amplify who you are so that everyone who meets you notices your three best traits and connects with that? You present yourself in the way you dress, the way you engage with others, your posture and how you speak. 

For example, psychologists are taught to mimic the body language of their patients. This makes patients feel deeply understood. However, someone who wants to convey authority usually stands up straight, no matter what the person across from him is doing.

Step 3:

Get comfortable sharing your imperfections.

Now that you’ve developed your best, most relatable traits, its time to show some vulnerability. Perfection is not relatable because it’s not sincere.

So, when it’s appropriate, tell a funny story about something goofy you did or let your customers know how you’ve failed in life. If they have been through similar situations of failure or frustration, they will feel closer to you and your business. 

Failure also builds trust because it shows people that you’re strong and dynamic—able to overcome hardships.

“Personal Branding for Private People” is a great tool to help you get comfortable with your imperfections online and in front of an audience.

Step 4:

Let your actions reflect your personality. 

When you own a business, you have the opportunity to live your personality on a larger scale. Structure your business so that it helps the world in the way you would. Always act with integrity when it comes to what you stand for and don’t let other people shake you.

For example, Johnson & Johnson is fourth on the World’s Most Admired Companies list. Its success stems from its dedication to serving the health and wellness of its customers first. It acts along those lines in everything it does.


Your personal brand strategy is bigger than you

The three adjectives you’re going to integrate into your personal branding strategy are a blueprint for a solid brand strategy.

Something I’ve noticed about successful people and businesses is that there is often good strategy behind everything they do. That’s why turning yourself into a brand strategy protects you from the pitfalls of being human and gives you a solid foundation to turn to all the time. Once you know what you really represent, you become bigger than your whims and emotions. You represent a cause and an idea.

But, if your personal brand is bigger than you, how do you control it?

With inspiration! Make yourself a brand package: a video or piece of writing that portrays your three adjectives and personal brand style very well.  Whenever you’re having a day that you don’t feel yourself, just go back to your brand package. Do something that will put you back on track with yourself.

And, don’t forget to formalize your personal branding strategy. Write out a plan that describes the tone, word choice, layout, posture and everything else you want to convey. This will be like a cheat sheet for your entire personal brand. It’s a lot like a blog style guide [link], but for your entire business brand.

I hope you found this information useful. Don’t forget that an authentic brand is a popular brand. 

What do your friends like about you? You might make a few more friends if you leave your questions and comments below.