Low on Budget? How to Brand Yourself as a Thought Leader in Your Industry

When you have a great product to sell, is it only the value proposition of the product that entices the buyer, especially when it is new on the market?

The answer lies in personal or self-branding, which new-age entrepreneurs are using to be one up their competitors by building repute and establishing an online presence. This opens up the door to business growth and development and sets them apart from their peers.

Look around and you’ll find examples aplenty, where co-founders of startups are leaving no stones unturned to become a brand everyone reckons with. They find ways to connect with their target audience on several platforms with various tactics. The audience, in return, is happy to connect with them at different levels such as directly shooting their queries directly or getting involved in a discussion. That’s the level of engagement guaranteed by personal branding, which eventually culminates into the success of their startups.

While there are several routes to an infallible personal branding, here are our top picks that’ll serve the same purpose but in a budget-friendly manner.

1. Use Blogging as a Tool


Blogging is one of the most powerful tools to get started on branding. It’s an exercise that’ll give you unlimited creative information, which you can use to write dense, information-laden write-ups. Make sure that the information used in the write-ups are useful to the readers, speaking of which, you also need to ensure that the blog is promoted to the right people!
Joel Gascoigne, the co-founder of Buffer frequently blogs about his takeaways from his journey as an entrepreneur and how to build a strong startup culture.


Similarly, Gary Vaynerchuck is another name to reckon with, offers advice to entrepreneurs and posts about social media marketing, storytelling as well as the art of the hustle.

There are many blogging platforms, which lets you create an account for free. All you need is to get a domain and start voicing your opinion right away. And to increase the footfalls, don’t forget to post regularly and promote the blogs on social media platforms.

Platforms to publish WordPress.com, Blogger, Tumblr, Medium, Weebly, Squarespace, Joomla or Ghost.

2. Be an Active Member on Answering Websites like Quora


Q&A websites like Quora help you establish yourself as an expert, drive traffic to your blog and get more mileage for your startup. Instead of limiting yourself to answering questions once in a blue moon, you need to stay active on the platform.
It all begins with creating your profile and adding as many details as you can. Next, follow the categories that are relevant to your startup’s niche to know the latest questions asked by the users. On the same lines, you can follow people who’re from the industry and are tremendously popular with the community.

You might just want to test the waters a bit, so go ahead and answer a few, simple questions. This will help you gain enough confidence. Before you know it, you’ll be able to start answering questions regularly!

3. Leverage Your LinkedIn Presence



LinkedIn is rapidly evolving into a platform where startup co-founders and founders regularly write, share or engage with various posts. Make the most of the platform by creating an All-Star profile, which not only talks about your achievements/accomplishments but also about your startup. It’s also important to have your startup’s LinkedIn page created to increase your visibility.

Along with these, don’t forget to connect with peers or anyone who’s relevant for knowledge sharing and exploring business opportunities by sending them a custom invitation.

Also, join some groups where you can share informative content and post comments to interact with the audience there. You can do this for the posts on the feed as well. Don’t know which posts to comment on? Use the search button to get sorted!

4. Be Omnipresent on Facebook


Facebook is another platform that’s huge and can help you make the most of your startup. With more than a million user base, the social media platform teems with startup owners and entrepreneurs looking forward to increasing their fan and follower count.

The question is, how?

For starters, you can opt for Facebook’s paid promotion feature that lets you reach your target audience. They have some economical packages using which you can promote your page or individual posts and gain traction on the platform.
And just like LinkedIn Groups, you can also become a part of Facebook’s Groups where you can participate in discussions pertaining to your industry.

Last, but not the least, go for Facebook instant articles, which will show up on your target audience network’s newsfeeds. Here again, you can take the help of paid promotions for quicker results.


5. Host Twitter Chats


Twitter chats are basically conversations that center around a particular hashtag on the platform. More often than not, these hashtags are the ones that are in trend and pave the way to easily interact and engage with the masses.
It’s an interesting way to connect with your fans and followers, understand their pain points and subtly promote your brand or business.

Since Twitter chats are public, recurring and based on specific topics, you can easily use them on a regular basis.
To make the most of this unique feature, you need to host a chat right away as this is a great exercise in enhancing your social media presence, getting instantaneous feedback/provide support and build a community that supports your venture.

In fact, even LinkedIn has its own Twitter chat called #LinkedInChat! You can get the hang of existing chats by searching for them. When you’re ready, come up with a plan such as choosing a unique hashtag, setting the day and time for the chat, find some moderators, add new members and start the discussion. While you’re at it, don’t forget to promote the chat on other platforms as well as summarize the different parts of chat for quick reference to the newly added members.


6. Youtube Videos


YouTube is yet another channel, which is immensely popular with new age business owners and entrepreneurs.
It enables you to create a wide range of videos. However, your main focus needs to be solving the problems of the end-users (via your product/service) by using the platform instead of being blatantly promotional.

After a certain stage, you may want to use videos not just to educate and inform, but also give a sneak peek into your startup’s culture, your working methodologies, how you address problems in real life and so on and so forth.
Remember, the more candid you will be in your efforts, the better your audience will relate and thereafter, connect with you on the video sharing channel.

And guess how much does it cost? Zilch!

All you need is a workable camera – it can be your phone camera as well, ensure the audio quality is up to the mark and add a suitable heading, description, and other details.


To Sum Up


For startups who’re looking forward to leverage branding online, these are some of the most budget-friendly opportunities that are already knocking on the door. So, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and give these a try and knock your competitors out!

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