When is it the right time to build a brand?

Are you thinking about building a new brand? This month, Simon Chard discusses when to get started and important tips to remember. 

Hi, guys – Dr Simon here back with episode four of Building a Brand. Today we’re going to be talking about when to start.

This is probably one of the number one questions I get from dentists who come up to me who don’t have a personal brand or a social profile already. They are nervous about getting going and they don’t really know how to get going. But really, it’s that impetus to start and move forward that they’re struggling with.

A lot of this comes from a hangover from the education system. We’re taught at school that we need approval to do anything. We’re taught at dental school that we need to have passed this test to be able to do this, or this examination or viva to move on to the next step.

But when we get out into the real world – and we’re talking about things like social media, or building a brand or content – it’s permissionless. There isn’t anyone who’s going to give you the validation that you are ready to start on the process. And that can be unnerving for some people when they’ve been in that rigid system for so long.

Stay curious, humble and authentic

So, what I would advise to these people is, you’ve just got to start. You’ve got to take a minimum viable product (MVP), and you’ve got to put it out to the market. In addition, you’ve got to receive feedback and you’ve got to constantly be looking for feedback.

One of my favourite quotes from Steve Jobs was from his commencement speech, which I believe he finishes with, ‘stay curious, stay humble’. That’s a great way to look at the content that you create. As long as you are following your own curiosities, and you are being humble in the way that you present yourself, I think that you’re going to come at it from the right way.

Now, saying this, you’re always going to get some trolling, and you’re always going to get a small percentage of people who maybe don’t relate or connect with the content and the brand that you are putting out into the world. And that’s fine. We’re never going to please everyone, just like how we’re never going to please every one of our patients.

It’s okay not to please everyone, but the vital part is authenticity. If you’re coming across as yourself as the truest version of yourself that you can be, and you’re having authentic engagement with your community, you’re going to find your tribe. You will  find a group of individuals who align with what you’re saying and they relate with what you’re saying. Hopefully they take value and even potentially education from what you’re saying, as well.

It’s time to get started

So, whatever stage you’re at, in your career, whether you’re a dental student, a new grad, or whether you’re a very experienced dentist, I think that you can enter the market with a personal brand at any stage.

And it’s wonderful for me now – I’ve had a personal brand since I qualified, which has gradually grown with me as my experience in various areas of dentistry and entrepreneurship have grown. But I’ve learned so much by testing, trialling, putting things out there, and getting the feedback.

Sometimes that feedback can be rough and so you have to develop a bit of a thick skin. But that resistance and that strength is something that’s going to stay with you into all of the endeavours that you take on in your life.

To summarise my points here, just get started. Number one, stay humble, stay curious. And most importantly, stay authentic to yourself. If you follow those three rules, then I think that you will build a community successfully or build a group of individuals who connect with you, both online and offline. You will really start to build a following that will support your personal brand and help you to grow and develop.

Hopefully this has been useful, and we’ll catch you on the next one. See you next time!

Catch up with Simon’s previous Building a Brand columns:

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