EP 009 | Escape the Self-Promotion Trap with Personal Branding

Personal branding has become essential for businesses and entrepreneurs in today’s ever-evolving world. But let’s face it, self-promotion can feel gross, right? It’s like you have to become a used car salesman trying to sell a car you know has a few too many miles on it. 


But it doesn’t have to be that way. 


Personal branding is the antidote to the cringe-worthy sales pitch. It’s about showing up as your authentic self, sharing your unique perspective, and attracting people who resonate with your message. So, let’s dive into the world of personal branding and discover the secrets to building a brand that will make you the talk of the town…in a good way!

Key Takeaways

  • Self-Promotion vs. Personal Branding: Picture this: you’re at a party and you meet someone who can’t stop talking about themselves. They’re like a human billboard, spewing out their accomplishments and accolades. I mean, who wants to hang out with that person? That’s self-promotion. But personal branding? That’s like having a superpower. It’s the art of being yourself, sharing your unique perspective, and attracting people who resonate with your message.


  • Authenticity and Value: When it comes to building your personal brand, authenticity is key. Be yourself, share your story, and offer valuable content that resonates with your audience. It’s not about bragging or trying to be someone you’re not. It’s about showing up as your true self and connecting with others on a deeper level.


  • Consistency and Credibility: Consistency is the name of the game when it comes to personal branding. Show up consistently, share valuable content, and engage with your audience. By being reliable and trustworthy, you’ll build credibility and attract the right clients. Remember, it’s not about being perfect, it’s about being real and consistent.


  • Overcoming Self-Promotion Anxiety: Look, I get it. Self-promotion can feel uncomfortable. It can feel like bragging or being salesy. But here’s the thing: when you focus on providing value and helping others, self-promotion becomes a natural byproduct. Share your expertise, offer solutions to problems, and be a resource for your audience. When you do that, people will naturally gravitate towards you.

Final Thoughts

Building a personal brand is not about blowing your own horn or trying to be someone you’re not. It’s about showing up as your authentic self, providing value, and connecting with others. When you do that, you’ll attract clients, build loyalty, and establish yourself as a trusted authority in your field.


So, embrace the power of personal branding and let your unique light shine! Remember, it’s never too late to start building your personal brand and making your business and career work for you.

So tune into the Invisible to Invincible Podcast, where we champion high-achieving entrepreneurs, business owners, coaches, consultants and executives. We’re your guide to achieving work-life fulfillment, making your career work for you (not the other way around), and pursuing success in business and life on your own terms. It’s never too late to take control, become visible and invincible, and transform your professional path, no matter your age (especially after 40). 😉



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EP 009 - Transcript

Escape the Self-Promotion Trap with Personal Branding

[00:00:00] Did you know that 82 percent of consumers are more likely to trust a company that has a strong personal brand associated with it than those that don’t? And before you shudder in horror at the idea of promoting yourself, in today’s episode I’m going to show you the difference between self promotion and personal branding and how personal branding can help you attract clients and grow your business. And how, if it feels like self promotion, you’re probably doing it wrong.


[00:00:36] Hello friends. I’m Kendra from kendralosee.com and you’ve tuned into the Invisible to Invincible Podcast where high achieving business owners share their journeys from hidden gems to industry leaders. Together we’ll uncover the secrets, mental shifts, and strategies that turned them into undeniable forces.


[00:00:57] So hit subscribe and let’s dive in.

[00:01:02] You here with me today? I’m excited. Here’s the thing. This keeps coming up over and over again, which is why I decided to dedicate the solo episode today to this topic. Because the reality is when you think of self promotion, what comes to mind?


[00:01:20] Is it the used car salesman, the marketing bro, the guy that’s online talking about all of the cool things that he’s done and accomplished and all his awards and degrees and whatever, or why he didn’t need a degree and all of those things. Or is it something else?


[00:01:38] Because every person I’ve talked to lately has told me things like, I hate promoting myself. The idea makes me want to throw up. Self promotion feels like garbage. It makes me feel icky. It makes me feel gross. I don’t like to brag about myself and I don’t feel comfortable doing that. I don’t want to become that person who only talks about themselves.


[00:02:06] The thought for a lot of us of doing something like that, of showing up in that way of needing to become a person who shows up in that way. Well, honestly, it makes me want to throw up a little bit too. Because that is not who I am and I’m guessing if you’re here, that is not who you are.


[00:02:27] When we talk about self promotion, that is what it looks like. It’s showing up and talking, making it all about you. It’s showing up in a way that we think we often need to show up and showing up in a way that is it’s self promoting. It’s like advertising yourself. It’s constantly just driving home those achievements that you have, real or not, in a way that it makes it hard for people to be impressed. It makes it hard to connect with people. I don’t know about you, but the last thing I want to do is spend. time sitting there listening to someone just talk about themselves. I mean, let’s be clear. There’s nothing less interesting than just listening to someone talk at you about themselves. It’s the same as a lot of one way marketing and advertising used to be before the internet came along. It’s easy. It’s that broadcast. Right? They may as well have a megaphone and just be shouting out how wonderful they are.


[00:03:29] And I don’t want any part of having to do that or doing it in that way.


[00:03:34] What does that mean when it comes to personal branding? How can we as business owners or you know, high achieving people in business Show up in a way that is meaningful.


[00:03:46] How can we create a place for us to show up? For us to share what we know? For us to talk about what we’ve done and our accomplishments because I know I can help somebody make a difference just as that much as that dude over there who’s talking about 10xing your business bro, but I’m not going to show up that way.


[00:04:07] How can I show up? How can you show up in a way that’s authentic? That feels right and is aligned with your values and what you believe in.


[00:04:14] When we talk about personal branding versus self promotion, one of the biggest things there is that self promotion is often just straight selling. As I mentioned, it’s just broadcasting what you can sell and how impressive you are so that people will want to buy from you. It’s basically drowning someone in your, your, in your message.


[00:04:42] Whereas creating a personal brand is really the process of creating a unique and positive perception of yourself and the minds of your target audience. You don’t have to do mass yelling about how great you are because you’re focusing on building relationships and providing value, without asking for anything in return.


[00:05:07] That’s what your business is for. Right? If you show up with a personal brand and you show up ready to add value and you show up ready to build trust and be authentic and connect and engage with people in a way that is true to you, You are going to be viewed as authentic. You are going to be viewed as trustworthy.


[00:05:32] People are automatically going to know, like, and trust you. And it will be the right people, the people you’re trying to talk to, in that same unique and authentic way. Self promotion will backfire and turn people away. I’ve seen it. I’ve heard it I’ve experienced it and on the other side of that is that personal branding can attract customers and build loyalty because people feel like they know you.


[00:06:01] People like I said, know, like, and trust you. They are going to automatically gravitate towards someone who they feel is aligned with their values, who they feel is living and practicing what they’re talking about. who represents a lot of what they know they need, what they know they want, and what they see in themselves.


[00:06:25] And it’s going to help build those relationships over time. So when we talk about personal branding, personal branding is the intentional act of showing up as yourself. Which is, let’s be clear, not as easy as it sounds. but we’ll get to that. Personal branding is creating a plan for yourself to increase your visibility and increase your credibility.


[00:06:52] It gives you the opportunity to attract more clients and customers who are the people you want to work with. You can build that loyal following. You will stand out from the competition and increase your earning potential. But in order to do that, you need to show up. And you need to show up in a way that feels authentic to you.


[00:07:14] Because if you’re not, you’re holding yourself back. When I talk about personal branding, you need to remember it’s for them, the people who need your help, the people who can benefit from the value of your expertise, the people who can benefit from the value of what you bring, what you know, your wisdom.


[00:07:36] It is not It’s not just talking about you for your sake, it’s talking about what you’ve done, what you know for their sake. And yeah, there’s things we need to do to establish our credibility, right? If I say that I have an MBA from Purdue, or that I wrote a book, or that I taught at colleges, a lot of times that’s in the conversation because it’s relevant.


[00:07:59] It does position me as an expert at what I do. but I could just as easily say and show you what I know, but sometimes we don’t have time for that.


[00:08:13] But when you start to look at creating a personal brand and you start to look at how you show up in a way that is not self promotion, which is about me, but in providing value and creating a personal brand so that I can better help you. That’s where the difference is going to lie. That will be the difference that makes the difference.


[00:08:37] Sometimes it’s just shifting your mindset to say, Okay, well, I don’t want to go on and talk about myself. But if I go on and talk about myself, and it’s going to help somebody else or they can learn from my mistakes or they can learn from my story or they can learn from the things that I’ve learned from doing what I do then that is going to help somebody and that is how I’m going to start creating my personal brand because let’s face it people want to do business with other people they don’t want to do business with businesses.


[00:09:10] And it’s much easier when you decide to strip away some of the things you might be hiding behind and show up as yourself. Show up to create content that is helpful and information for your audience that might be engaging that you can share your expertise and your insights.


[00:09:30] And you want to be consistent about it because showing up as yourself starts to create that personal brand and people get used to seeing you and they get used to seeing you in a certain way and you can pivot, you can change, but you’re still going to be you. And the things that you show up with are still going to be true to you.


[00:09:50] I talked about this in one of my recent posts on LinkedIn about how I’ve been a marketer my entire career, even when I was a professor, like everything was around marketing. Okay? And while marketing has evolved, some of the key things about it have not. And one of those things is that as a marketer at no matter what size company I was at, It was my job to make someone else look good.


[00:10:18] It was my job to make the brand look good. It was my job to make the leadership look good. It was my job to show other people how to shine and help them shine. And through all of that, it was very much of me holding myself back. It wasn’t, no one cared. No one cared who I was. They cared about the brand.


[00:10:44] They cared about the leadership. They didn’t care who was behind the scenes. And it’s easy to get used to being that person behind the scenes. But guess what? When you start your own business, you’re no longer that person behind the scenes. You need to learn to show up. And you need to learn to show up in a way that’s authentic and adding value.


[00:11:02] If you just show up, start promoting yourself, and saying how great you are and why no one else is going to be better than you, you’re going to lose interest. You’re going to lose people’s attention. Because it’s basically the same as shouting at them. But when you show up in a way that is genuine and authentic, and as yourself, it’s going to be a lot more impactful.


[00:11:24] And part of that confession was that not only did I show up, I was forced to show up when I started my business in 2016, but I was forced to, I put myself behind a logo. And I put myself behind, no matter how much advice I read, I called, I gave my business a cool name and then I created another part of my agency and gave that a cool name.


[00:11:48] And I basically put layers between me and the people I wanted to talk to. When I went to write articles or what have you, I showed up as myself. Industry articles, great. Industry interviews, great. They’re talking to me. I’m a person. But when I went to create content, For my brand, I would literally sit there and say, okay, well, today I’m creating content for Mota Marketing.


[00:12:15] What would Mota Marketing have to say about this? And I would filter what I wanted to say through the brand, cutting off my personal brand in the meantime. I’d go to events, I’d be me. I’d do interviews online and I would be me. But I tried to force the brand because it was what I knew and it was what I was used to.


[00:12:39] And I was afraid of promoting myself and becoming that person I didn’t want to be. But guess what? It took a while but I’ve learned that I don’t have to be that person, I can just be myself. And I can work on creating a personal brand. That’s authentic to me. And whether you name your company after your own name or you use another, you use a real company name, you still want to show up as yourself.


[00:13:06] Make sure if your audience is aligned and your marketing message is aligned, make sure that you are not putting that filter of that logo between you and your audience. If your audience is made up of similar people to you show up as yourself.


[00:13:25] I’ve met people who have said to me, well, that’s great for you, but this product over here that I’m selling, they’re not my audience.


[00:13:35] You know what? They can be. I’ve had people say, I was talking to one gentleman who owned a business and he was saying, well, my target audience for this product is women, but they don’t want to hear from me. You know what? Maybe they do. Have you tried? What if they want to know why you created this company?


[00:13:53] What if they want to know your story? How can your story relate to that? Because I guarantee it’s going to make a difference in your business.


[00:14:02] So how do you build, how do you build a strong personal brand that doesn’t make you feel gross? First of all, understand your core values, understand what makes you, you. Understand what your unique position is and your unique perspective.


[00:14:18] Because people are going to pay for your perspective and that’s what they want to know. They want to know that you either agree with them, that you have an interesting way, that you make them think, that you engage them, that you’re funny, whatever it is that’s related to your brand that is authentically you, that is what’s going to attract them in.


[00:14:39] In order to do that, you need to be authentic and transparent and you need to share your true self with your audience. Be honest about your strengths. Be honest about your weaknesses. One thing that you really want to, I want to put here is that it doesn’t mean you have to tell them everything about you.


[00:14:59] You don’t. You get the, you’re the one in control. You’re the one building your personal brand. What do you feel comfortable talking about and what do you not want them to know? What do you not want out there?


[00:15:11] I will say for years, I’ve been on this health journey for 20 years, 20 years I’ve been after a health journey and trying to find reasons why I was gaining weight for no reason, no matter how healthy I was, no matter how much I worked out, no matter how little I ate, no matter what I ate, all of the things. all the doctors I saw. It was exhausting and I didn’t want to talk about it. I hate talking about it. I will be perfectly honest, I still don’t enjoy it. But when I talk about it and when I show some of those elements that are the me behind my business, the me behind the marketer, the strategist, the mindset coach, that is where people are most interested because everyone’s going through something.


[00:16:03] And for me as a mindset coach, I can tell you right now, one of the things that I know a lot of business owners are struggling with is limiting beliefs. A feeling like I can’t put myself out there. A feeling like self promotion is garbage. So what can I do? And you know what? That’s where I come in.


[00:16:22] Because I’ve been an advocate for myself for 20 years to try and find the secret to feeling better. Trying to work with doctors and medical professionals who can help me. And it wasn’t until I found a few recently in the last year or two who really have been able to help me that I’ve really been able to feel better to realize I can talk about this because one of my strengths is being an advocate for myself.


[00:16:49] Some call it stubborn. Some call it willpower of steel. Some call it just annoyingly stubborn determination. But that’s what I have and that’s who I am. And I do it for myself and I do it for my clients.


[00:17:05] And so when you start to look at what is it about yourself that stands out, what is it about yourself that’s unique? One of the things I can tell you is when I looked at what I want to talk about and what I don’t want to talk about, that one was in the don’t want to talk about list. And guess what?


[00:17:22] Sometimes it can be the most powerful, but there’s still a don’t want to talk about it list. And I still hold true to the things that I think that are, you know, really private and I don’t want to talk about. I’ve decided where that line is for the things I want to share and the things I’m open to sharing and each of you can do that.


[00:17:42] When it comes to building your personal brand, you don’t have to be taking pictures of everything you do. You don’t have to be talking about everything you do. You don’t have to be sharing and showing up at nauseam on every single social media platform. You need to do the things that work for you. You need to do the things.


[00:18:02] That you are excited to do, that you’re excited to talk about, that you’re excited to share. And sometimes what you’re excited to share today might not be what you feel like sharing tomorrow, and it might not be what you feel like sharing next week or next year. And some of the things, like for me, that were on my, Ugh, God, I don’t want to talk about that.


[00:18:20] Guess what? Now I do. I’m ready. And that’s going to change over time. So when you think about building your personal brand, what are the pillars? What are the things that make you different? What are your unique perspectives? What is it that your core values that align? And what is it you can use to create?


[00:18:39] What’s your expertise? What can you use to create and provide value to your audience? What are the experiences and the stories and the message you want to share based on what you do? And it’s going to be different for every single one of us because every single one of you is different. And while you might do the exact same thing as somebody else, you’re going to do it in a different way.


[00:19:02] But if you don’t share that, no one’s going to know that. I feel very strongly about this if you can’t tell. I really want you to take away from this that personal branding can make a big difference. It can help you attract more clients. When you show up as yourself, you’re going to. Bring in more people who are like minded people who are understand that you’re an expert in your field Who’ve been paying attention to what you say and what you do You’re going to find that they come to find you and they’re going to Find you where you show up because you need to show up and you need to show up in a way once again What is it?


[00:19:48] That’s authentic. Oh, and trustworthy. Ah, and that you are showing up as yourself because people will know if you’re not. Life’s too short to try and be someone else. Just show up as yourself. Let’s be clear. Like, just, yeah, do that.


[00:20:08] Create the content consistently. Look at what you can talk about. Decide how you want to be seen and viewed and make sure when you do that it’s aligned and that it’s true to you and it’s true to your audience and it’s true to what you do because whether you’re a coach, a consultant, a business owner, a solopreneur, an entrepreneur, or an executive, whatever your role is, it’s important to have a personal brand because you don’t know what’s going to hold, what tomorrow’s going to hold.


[00:20:46] And you want to be making sure that you have that platform and you’ve created that audience and people know where to find you. If anything changes or you sell your business or you decide you want to go out on your own or whatever those things are, the world is full of possibilities. But we also know there’s a lot of change.

[00:21:06] And how you show up and what you say and how you present yourself and your personal brand will build over time and building those relationships and those aren’t going to go away. What you build for yourself is not going to go away. What you learn and what you talk about and the things you do will evolve, but it’s not going away.


[00:21:30] It is yours and you’re creating it


[00:21:34] and it doesn’t have to feel gross or like garbage. It can feel empowering and valuable and earn you respect and it can feel, it can feel freeing. I can’t even tell you how freeing it can feel. You need to experience it for yourself.


[00:21:53] So, so as we come out of that, I didn’t know it was going to get so personal in there. Look at me talking about personal things on my personal branding podcast episode. When you start to look at, but seriously, when you start to look at what you can do and how you show up and how you can challenge. What’s what you’ve done in the past and how you can challenge that feeling of I don’t want to show up.


[00:22:21] Self promotion is not for me. Well, you know what? Maybe it’s not. It probably isn’t because you don’t want it. You don’t want that self promotion garbage. You want to build an intentional personal brand that can help you connect with your audience, engage with them, and build a loyal following who know, like, and trust you and refer business to you.


[00:22:45] So If you have any comments or questions, please drop them below. Please send me a message. I love to hear from people who’ve been listening to episodes and it’s just been tremendous. I really want to thank you for joining me today and remember at KendraLosee.com you can find marketing strategy and mindset coaching and really remember, I am all about passionately driven entrepreneurs and guiding you to success in both business and life because it is Never too late to make your business and career work for you Not the other way around. Go find me at KendraLosee.com and say hi. Until next time