A brand story is a road map of who your company is, what your company wishes to achieve, and why your ideal clients should want to work with you. A mistake I frequently see freelancers make is NOT treating themselves as a business would. The moment you become a freelancer is the moment you become a business - and any great business understands the importance of having a brand story.
Brand stories are a way to truly showcase your individual skills as a freelancer and allow your clients to make a connection with you beyond your work experience. A great freelancer - no matter the niche - utilizes a brand story to help sell themselves to prospective clients, as well as be a relatable human being. It is the best way to stand out in a crowd of thousands, and as a freelancer, you need every gain you can get over your competition.
Don't have a brand story? Don't worry. Today, we are going to set a foundation that will help you build a brand story that works, and if you do have a brand story, be sure to check these tips out to see if you have room for improvement.
Establish your cause.
What led you to become a freelancer? Tell your story and let it be uniquely yours. Your clients should be able to connect with you on more than a professional level. Plus, this step can lead to self-discovery and the reestablishment of your goals. You will remember the 'why' behind all of the hard work you do. It's a therapeutic exercise for yourself, and it will set you apart from your competition.
Showcase your passion.
After you have established what caused you to become a freelancer, you get to introduce your fierce passion for the niche you work within. Tell your clients how you plan on tackling the problems that led you to become a freelancer. Are you filling a gap in your market? Are you helping others in need? Whatever it may be, it should be something that fires you up and gets you ready to work. Not sure if the emotion is coming through? Send what you have to a friend and ask them to tell you what they think. They will be able to tell you whether they would want to work with you or not.
Express your 'little details'.
Your little details are the little things that make you different from all the other freelancers out there. This can be a fun place to mess around with some acronyms! Ask yourself who you are as a professional and person. Are you compassionate? Are you upbeat and responsive? How about organized and respectful? List out your absolute best qualities on a piece of paper and work from there, describing why you are each of those things. This is also a great place to tell your clients what kind of partnership they are receiving when they team up with you.
Briefly describe your services.
It is important to have your services somewhere on your website, but in your brand story, you don't need to be lengthy about what each of your services are. Simply let your client know what you will be bringing to the table outside of your personality. This is a great spot to mention any awards or certificates (or even a piece of a testimonial) that will back up your authenticity as a freelancer. Remember, you are trying to sell yourself to your client as a business they would want to work with. The services you mention should be services your niche market needs. If there isn't a need for them, then you will be unlikely to have many interactions with clients.
Use a call to action.
A call to action or CTA is, essentially, a way to draw in your clients and get them to click on whatever the next step would be. If you're a freelance writer, then maybe it is a call-out for them to shoot you an email or follow you on Linked In. If you are a photographer, perhaps you send them to a portfolio section on your website to further pique their interest. Whatever it is, it needs to be something that results into a conversion for your business as a freelancer. Another great one is to have them sign-up to an email list, especially if you have an eBook or other piece of marketing material to sell. Just make sure that your CTA aligns with your mission. If it is completely unrelated, then your client is less likely to interact with your CTA. They are only going to want to sign-up for a newsletter, for example, if it means they will gain valuable content on an issue they need to solve.
Having a brand story is a must for any freelancer who wishes to be successful in their endeavors. Personally, I have found that rounding out my brand story has helped me create more fluid marketing campaigns and have a better idea of how to introduce myself to prospective clients. It makes life easier - so why not? If you don't have a brand story, use these tips to create one. If you do, then use these tips to see if you can improve it.
The way I see it is if you have someone read your brand story, and they have to turn around and ask you a bunch of questions, then your brand story isn't ready for clients. It should encompass everything the client needs to know, so they can reach out to you and interact with your content without a doubt in their mind that they want to work with you.