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How much weight do words carry in building our personal brand? A lot!
Building our own brand and that of our company, especially if you are executives or founders, revolves around what you do and what you say about what you did. As someone who focuses on building brands for entrepreneurs, executives and startups, and crafting impactful messages, I am mindful of the transformative power of words. They have the ability to evoke emotions, alter our body chemistry and create connections, all of which directly shape brands. Brands develop over time through the messages we consistently and deliberately share with the world.
Let’s delve into the world of brand building, supported by research, and explore how we can use words to influence listeners and cultivate authentic brands. Whether it’s crafting compelling pitches for investors, inspiring articles and narratives or mastering the art of persuasion in sales, these strategies will help you harness the potential of words to establish genuine connections, evoke emotions and enhance your value to others.
Related: 6 Powerful Brand Storytelling Tips For Marketers
Supercharge your narratives with emotions
We’ve all been there: a story sounds too “smooth” or too “perfect” we tend to suspect their reliability and not remember them well, since we can’t see ourselves in them or feel something about them. So then, when you craft narratives, make sure to demonstrate vulnerability and authenticity and use descriptive language that engages the senses with universal themes and values. Those points can make you become more relatable and somewhat reliable.
For instance, instead of explaining product features, share a story that showcases its transformational impact on a customer’s life — a storyline that others can relate to from their own life — and use emotional descriptions (i.e. “Before they used the product they were frustrated and overwhelmed by the overload of work, but once they used it they were focused and felt free to handle other aspects of the business”).
Another example: an entrepreneur selling sustainable clothing can narrate a story about how their eco-friendly clothes reduced allergy symptoms among sensitive people who got their “lives” again after moving to that product, along with positively impacting the environment.
Provoke curiosity and intrigue
Creating curiosity can be a strong tool to draw attention, share your knowledge in your domain and connect others to you. It can be done when you use suspenseful language that leaves the other side wanting more from you, whether it’s one person or an audience of clients, and even a social media post, and pose thought-provoking questions that challenge conventional thinking. In practice, begin investor or client presentations with intriguing questions that spark curiosity and set the stage for captivating discussions. For instance, a speaker addressing an audience about the future of artificial intelligence can ask, “Can you imagine a world where machines surpass human intelligence?” or “Do you think modesty is a relevant practice in the workplace today?”
By the way, some words such as “imagine,” and “what if you…” can really get the other side moved and curious, and open their mind to new possibilities — all thanks to you.
Leveraging social proof and influential language
Incorporate testimonials, case studies, or success stories to build credibility and authority, emphasizing the impact and value your work has had on others. Highlight prestigious affiliations, endorsements or partnerships to further establish credibility and influence.
By showcasing the success stories of previous ventures or collaborations, you emphasize positive outcomes and garner trust. For example, a startup founder can include quotes from satisfied clients or highlight partnerships with industry-leading organizations to demonstrate the value and trustworthiness of their brand.
Related: A Brand Story Is What You Need to Share Your Entrepreneurial Vision. Here’s How to Create One.
Tailoring language to individual communication styles
Look carefully at others’ communication and personality types, and adapt your language to resonate with different styles. Once the other side feels you understand their world they connect and trust you more. Use words that align with their values, motivations and communication preferences, empathize with their perspective and address their specific needs.
In practice, when communicating with analytical individuals, provide data-driven evidence and use precise language that appeals to their logical reasoning. Or when presenting to a CFO or any finance executive, use terms like “return on investment,” “risk mitigation” and “data-driven insights” to appeal to their analytical mindset.
The power of words extends beyond ordinary tips and tricks; it lies in the ability to evoke emotions, forge connections and build a distinctive personal brand, whether you use it in a face-to-face interaction or online. By implementing those strategies, such as crafting emotionally charged narratives, provoking curiosity, leveraging influential language and tailoring communication styles, you can captivate your audience, evoke emotions and leave a lasting impact of a credible personal brand. Embrace the transformative power of words and witness the profound difference it makes in building authentic connections and shaping your personal brand in the business world.