Bring yourself into the spotlight

Imagine the scene: you’re at a party and the conversation turns to work. As an entrepreneur, you’re extremely proud of your business and the hard work you put in to get your business to where it is now. The conversation flows easily and the passion for your business shines through. You have no problem with associating yourself with your business when you’re talking face to face. And the person you’re talking to is totally on board by now…

So, why are you often reluctant about placing yourself front and centre in posts about your brand online? It’s the same thing – connecting you to your business. At the end of the day, people want to do business with someone they like. Putting yourself and your team forward isn’t being pushy or self-important, it’s about being proud of your business and building a relationship with your customers.

Don’t fall into the trap of hiding behind the camera either. Nope. People need to be able to identify you as the business owner. Including your staff in photos is great of course, you should all be in there. But you need to ensure that you’re not pushed to the background, that there is balance. And, it should be authentic, real and honest. Vulnerable even. People don’t build a strong relationship with your cool designer store interior, although they might like your style. The don’t build a relationship with your latest brands or your general content, for example. They need to connect to you. It creates loyalty, it creates ambassadors, and at the end of the day, the best PR team you could wish for. Customers are the strongest marketing tool!

Research* of over 1 million Instagram photos has discovered that photos with human faces are 38% more likely to receive likes and hearts than photos with no faces in them. The research also showed that age, gender and the number of faces in the photo doesn’t matter as long as there’s a person in there! Scientists think that this links into how we communicate from a really early age, often relying on someone’s face as a non-verbal way of communicating. So as people, we like to see photos of other people too, as we relate to them.

With that in mind, we’ve put together our top tips to get you ready to take the next steps in linking your image with your brand online. Just remember this:

You’re not being weird – 40 million photos are posted to Instagram every day, and a lot of those will be photos of people where they’ve put themselves front and centre. You can bet they’re not worrying about putting their face online! Making yourself identifiable on the internet is the norm now. Look at social media influencers who have made a career out of people getting to know them, follow them, showing their followers who they are by sharing photos of themselves.

Don’t worry about what people think – we often worry about what other people think far more than those people are actually thinking about us. You look great and you should be proud of your business acumen. Being an entrepreneur isn’t easy and there will always be trolls out there. As we say in Dutch, translated to English, the people that think they know best are usually not the ones doing it. Take ownership and associate yourself with your brand to reap the rewards!

Take the plunge – the anticipation and worry about posting a photo (or video) of yourself online can be a much bigger deal than the photo once it’s out there. Sometimes you just need to get started and do it! Don’t overthink, do. Start so you can experience what works.

Get a photo you’re happy with – do you think huge social media influencers just run with the first photo they take? Of course they don’t! Many Instagrammers are open about the fact they might take a hundred photos just to get one they want to post (it is their business after all). If you’re not happy about your selfies, get comfortable with having your photo taken. Make sure that you’re feeling confident, get some staging or lighting in if you feel that that would help and give yourself enough time to grab a great photo. It could even be worth getting a professional in to get some photos. It’s much easier to feel comfortable with a photo if you actually like it in the first place. And it doesn’t have to be a selfie, get a great photoshoot done in your store, showing you at work?

Bring other people into the mix – if you don’t feel confident just yet, bring in some other people who are more comfortable in front of the camera, like your staff or business partners, to be a part of it too. You’re in this together, after all. Their confidence will rub off on you and hopefully you’ll see there’s nothing to worry about.

Experiment with filters and apps – similarly to posting photos being the norm, using filters and apps is also the complete norm. There are very few photos on Instagram, for example, that don’t have a little tweak or a flattering filter, and if it makes you feel better about your photo then why not!

So, summarizing this blog post, your customers are using social media and they want to stay up to date with you and your brand. Keep them connected with regular, people-focused content and showcase your products, skills and expertise. But mostly, keep them connected to YOU and your store’s purpose. We know that as an entrepreneur, you’ve got more than enough on your to-do list. So if you’re looking for a new way to distribute content as an entrepreneur, and stay in touch with your social media, why not let us help you? Those personal photos, only you can provide. But your other social media content, we can provide!

Embrosa is an easy to use app (App Store / Google Play) on your smartphone. It’s a platform packed with photos and other ready-to-share content. We collect pictures with (or without) text and videos from brands, suppliers, local government, influencers, associations for entrepreneurs and other sources in our app. The pictures with text inspire entrepreneurs and can be downloaded for online and offline marketing, or can be shared to your social media straight from the app. And Embrosa provides you with smart statistics too! Want to know how effective your content is? With Embrosa you can make data-driven decisions.

At Embrosa we love inspiring brands and the local entrepreneurs that bring cities to life. We help them so their stories reach their consumers and thus create connections. We accomplish this through our platform for brands, our app for entrepreneurs, and the power of content.

Last but not least, we’re with you! Wanna see our photos and personal stories? Catch our blog, like the latest personal story by CEO and Co-Founder Melanie about her journey as an entrepreneur. Or follow our Instagram account to see our personal stories there. Just go for it, get up close and personal to your timeline!

* Research carried out by the Georgia Institute of Technology and Yahoo Labs