Building a boss brand is the process of reviewing where you are, and where you want your life and business to go.
Since 2006, I’ve been learning how to combine passion, purpose, people, and profits. This has included serving both sole practitioners and multi-million and billion-dollar brands in multiple industries—retail, consulting, energy, and education, to name a few. I’ve combined all I’ve learned into a smart approach to helping businesses start or grow.
Throughout this journey, I’ve been able to make a direct impact on my own business, as well as others. In 2014, I guided my own team to grow my own business, FIT Life Creation, 25x in year one. We took an integrated approach, combining storytelling, video, and social media across multiple channels.
I’ve helped other brands across a variety of industries achieve 10x results equal to over $10,000,000 in one year alone. In one instance, an energy company I worked with actually achieved over 1000 percent return on investment.
Before we jump into how to build a boss brand, I want to acknowledge that you may not have even started your business yet! I celebrate you for even thinking about embarking on the journey of entrepreneurship. It is not for the faint of heart. But if you’re interested in figuring out how to build a boss brand, keep reading!
In this article, I’ll go through the tips, tools, and tech that can help clear the clutter and scale smart.
If you’re creating or growing a startup, you’re likely thinking about:
- Getting off the ground: Creating and filing a company name, registration, tax ID, logos, business planning, social media, websites, marketing, and income streams. This will be the main focus of this guide.
- Elevating an existing business: Growing to the next level, which means you are working toward increased results, time freedom, and visibility, through automation and delegation. Watch for Part 2 of how to build a boss brand—it’s coming soon, and it will dive deeper into how you can elevate your already existing business.
Get in the right frame of mind
Building a boss brand is the process of reviewing where you are, and where you want your life and business to go. If you focus on the end game of creating value, serving people, scaling smart, and driving profits, you are eons ahead of everyone.
If you choose to focus on challenges, complexity, and bureaucracy, well, you will be like a lot of other businesses—struggling with value, results, and cash flow.
Quick wins to get your boss brand off the ground (and save money)
I often see people (including myself sometimes) being overtaken by complexity. I urge you to keep it as simple as possible, especially in the beginning. Focus on what you get done day by day that drives revenue.
1. Pick a name
This is an easy place to get stuck. You can always change it. Search the Secretary of State, trademark database, or National Registry to make sure no one else is using the one you choose. I’ve seen several successful companies that have changed names along the way—even Nike use to be called something else! Simply choose the name!
2. Register your company’s legal structure and name
This is another easy place to get stuck, but don’t let fear of the unknown stop you. Every state has a Secretary of State website where you can file online!
You don’t need to pay someone else to do this for you. I’ve done it numerous times, and showed others how to do it; it takes less than 30 minutes. Are you happy you just found a way to save some money? Heck yes!
3. Get your tax ID
Many people think you have to have to hire someone or use a service to file for your Employer Identification Number (EIN) otherwise known as your TAX ID. Are you ready? In this day and age you can do it online yourself in less than five minutes (cha-ching—more money and time saved!)
I see many people stress about where to get a logo. Sometimes they pay hundreds or even thousands of dollars (that they don’t have) and want it to be perfect first time around. Hey, I get it. I am all for high quality. Let’s simplify this too, shall we?
I got my last two logos for FIT Life Creation and Katrina Julia for $5 each. Yes. $5. I’ve also advised countless businesses to do this with great results. Where and how did I manage this? I used Fiverr—this is a platform for entrepreneurs with countless services (I will talk about them more in Part 2 of this article).
I recommend you get a general idea of what you want your logo to look like and represent. See if you can get a screenshot of something similar that you like. Then, go to Fiverr, and search logo creators that have a similar style and send them the screenshot and instructions.
5. Start business planning
I’ve been using LivePlan since 2005—I believe it is the premier and easiest business planning tool out there. I’ve used this tool for retail, consulting, and services businesses. I recommend them for numerous reasons, from the vision to pitch, to funding, to benchmarks, to sample templates and everything in between.
My question to you is: If you don’t have a roadmap and destination, how on earth would you know how to get there? That is what LivePlan has done for me and countless other businesses. At a bare minimum, if you haven’t already, I suggest using the Pitch, Executive Summary, and Financials tools to start. Then dive into the Marketing Plan and Operations. LivePlan offers countless free business plan templates that you can even copy and paste and then modify to help you get started! If you are truly serious about building a boss brand—there is no excuse. I review our business plan, and correlate and coordinate actions daily and weekly now. You get what you focus on. This is a true game changer.
It is so important to get away and work on your dreams and business sometimes and not get lost in the day to day. As an example, every single week I have a day I work on the business. This includes diving into the business plan! I train clients to do the same! I also get away every 90 days (locally) to do an even deeper dive on strategy, structure, systems, and results. We also do this type of work in our retreats—we had two recent retreats to Cuba and Costa Rica, and one upcoming to Brazil! If you can manage it, taking time away from your regular surroundings can be really valuable.
6. Be present on social media
Are you on all the social channels? Do you have a plan? Are you building a presence? Are you creating with influencers? Are you creating regular content? Do you have a blog?
I recommend starting with LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram, and building from there. Yes, this takes work. I first got on Instagram in 2013, and it was a hot mess. I was completely clueless. I had to learn bios, colors, visuals, hashtags, and more! I learned from countless influencers who are rockstars at building their social media! Check out my Instagram here.
- Get clear on who you are and what you share
- Decide on color scheme and visual layout
- Tag each post and list 30 hashtags
- Use tools like Preview, Hootsuite, and IFTTT
Some additional resources that can help: Canva, Fiverr, Hootsuite, and IFTTT. I use Canva for absolutely everything—from social media posts, to courses, to guides, and more! I also use Canva to create social templates and have RossCT on Fiverr create posts weekly to free up time. I use Hootsuite to schedule posts out so something is consistently posted. I use IFTTT to help circulate content across all platforms. I’ve also used Fiverr for full outsourcing of our social media manager role, ranging from $40 to $200 a month.
7. Build your website
The tools that now exist for building a website and automation are incredible! I have been in awe. There are also an overwhelming number of solutions.
I recommend using Wix; I suggest either challenging yourself to get a template up in a single day—or paying someone on Wix or Fiverr to do it. Simply get something up; you can always change it. The website you see on our site has been revised 10-plus times in the last three years as things have grown.
In Part 2 of this series, I will talk about a new tool used to automate and scale that we are currently migrating into. The key is to keep it simple and get something out there.
8. Track and measure action and results
I also want to highlight the importance of action and measurement for all of your sales and marketing efforts.
Action = Results.
Measurement = Management.
I track action in every area consistently using tools like Meister and Focus Matrix. I also track actual return on investment (ROI) conversion results. This means looking at social reach, website visits, engagement, action, and sales.
For us, this starts with looking at how freebies (intro to a relationship with us) translate to sales and paid experiences, ambassador applications, or fundraisers requests.
In essence, this means that we use five separate marketing relationship funnels based on the actions we’d like potential customers to take. We also track actual conversion between those funnels; for example, the percentage of those who take advantage of our experience-based services to become ambassadors, and so on.
9. Make and use business cards
Now that you have your company name, tax ID, some social presence, and a website, let’s get some business cards. I absolutely love Moo; they have incredible easy plug and play templates. Take them with you wherever you go, and don’t be afraid to give them out when you meet new people who show just a little interest.
10. Brainstorm income streams
What are you offering? How much time is it taking you? Depending on your industry and specific niche, you might start with offering hourly services. That is how I started with consulting services.
The key is simply to start—offer consultations, put together some value bundles like strategy sessions, or set up a system where you’re operating on retainers. As you are doing this, I want you to start thinking about and noting how you may free up your time.
If there’s a question that comes up over and over, could you record a freebie video to put on your website so you don’t have to create a new message or asset every time it comes up? Could you get a team member to do that to save time? Should you pay to create an animated training video showing instructions? Could you take it to the next level and record a training that could be sold as an online course?
Start brainstorming and get excited! Grab a journal and write things down. This isn’t simply about getting your product or brand off the ground (and making sure T’s are crossed and I’s dotted). It is about planting the seeds from the start on how to think like a boss and elevate your business every step of the way.
To give you some ideas, FIT Life Creation is a one-stop lifestyle brand concerned with health, wealth, and business. We offer online and in-person experiences and services that help people develop strategies to build ambassadorship and fundraising potential. It’s all in service of helping people to create a life and business they love.
This a multi-dimensional and integrated business model. We help people integrate and leverage social media influencers, press, and partnerships with entrepreneurs who want to promote or integrate our lifestyle platform. We offer multiple options for profit sharing with bonuses and affiliate structure! This also means that we serve as a fundraising platform to help people get healthy, make money, build brands, and raise money at the same time for their cause. Think Amazon or Airbnb of transformation.
11. Keep things simple and take action
The key to all of this is keeping things as simple as possible.
Every single day, I ask myself: How can I simplify this? How can I automate this? How can I delegate this? Everything you do is teachable and transferable so you can create and free up more time.
On your journey with How to Build a Boss Brand: Part 1, I want to leave you with the word—action. Too often, I see people get paralyzed in simply thinking about starting. Take action, and before you know it your business will go from crawling to walking to running!
While you’re taking the tactical steps to build your brand, I want you to stay true to yourself.
Ask yourself: what do you love, what have you overcome, what are your gifts, talents, and abilities, and how do you want to impact? I want you to think about what legacy you want to leave. What purpose do you want your business to serve?
Just do not allow thinking about this to stop you from taking action. You and the business will continue to evolve the more action you take!
In How to Build a Boss Brand: Part 2, I will focus on elevating an existing business while continuing to integrate your passion and purpose!