This is such a common question! People get stuck on this and it stops them progressing because they can’t build a website, register a business name, or market without a name!
So let’s look the pros and cons of branding your business with your own name.
- Business is about relationships, even on the net. Branding as yourself helps you form relationships and generate trust. It makes it easier to connect through story-telling, touch people emotionally, and express your values and personality through your business.
- Branding as yourself is particularly appropriate for service providers like coaches, trainers and designers because buyers want someone they like and trust.
- Ultimately, branding as yourself puts you beyond competition – there’s only one you! People will come to you because they like you, trust you, and resonate with you.
- In the long term a personal brand is very powerful. You’re more likely to attract a loyal following.
- A personal brand can integrate a diverse range of products. A standard business wouldn’t counsel children, write books and read tarot cards – but you can.
- Branding as yourself stops you hiding behind your business. It forces you to step out into the world and take up space.
- It’s often easier to register your name as a domain name. Many good business names have already been registered.
- Branding with your own name commits you to a long-term involvement with your business.
- It’s harder to sell your business. To do so, your business has to transcend your name. Walt Disney, Coco Chanel and Henry Ford did, but you might not be planning an international empire.
- It’s harder to establish your brand in the short term. No one knows you yet. Initially, people are more likely to relate to business names that include your main product or service, eg ‘How to Create a Website’.
- Names that are hard to spell present a challenge for people trying to find you on the web.
- Branding as yourself can be scary and confronting. (That’s not a good reason not to do it!)
Branding as yourself can be a powerful move, but only if you plan to be intimately connected with your business long term.
Branding as yourself is a personal decision. Ultimately, you must do what feels right for you and your business. Sit with the decision, sense how each choice feels in your body, then decide. But don’t let fear stop you!
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Thanks for reading :)