Why Visibility Is Hurting Your Brand
You may have heard that the main/only reason things are not working for your brand is that you lack visibility.
So, you’ve done everything the experts say you must do to gain visibility.
You’ve gone on social media and if you’re not posting videos, you’re posting text as content. You’ve attended classes to boost your confidence because you’re actually an introvert. You’ve hired publicists, agents, influencers, PR people. You’ve staged or taken part in publicity stunts, collabs, bonanzas and discount sales.
So, you don’t know why the money isn’t coming in like it should (no matter what it looks like on social media). Or why you’re so tired, irritable and grumpy all the time.
The truth is that visibility is not progress. So, visibility could actually be hurting your brand – especially if you’re a woman in Law OR Media – and you won’t even know.
If you read to the end of this blog post, you’ll see the two things you’re probably doing and/or two things you’ve not done – which are causing visibility to hurt your brand badly.
1) You’re going to the wrong places
It can be very tempting to think you need to be everywhere, to succeed as a brand.
I remember when I first started out, I was told that I needed to be everywhere. I did not question it; I thought it made sense cos if you don’t go to places, how do you want anyone to know you/what you do?
So, I was on 4-5 different social media platforms, running myself ragged. Going on various shows, being featured in all kinds of media and being open to meeting different people. While getting no sales.
I drew the line at attending events cos I’m an introvert and getting dolled up to go to events where I don’t know anyone, so that I can meet or take pictures with people I don’t particularly like? That’s never been a justifiable use of my resources.
But you might be doing that right now cos you crave visibility; I mean, going to places you don’t need to be (online or in person). And that’s hurting your brand.
They say you need to join Twitter. So, you do. Then, it’s Threads is the new hangout, so you open an account there. You hear this party is where all the movers and shakers will be, so you bankrupt yourself to get an outfit and a ticket. You don’t realise that no matter the visibility you think you’ll get from them, if you’re not sure how to get (virtual or physical) platforms to work for your brand – they’re just distractions.
I get that you want to be seen and clients are not typically going to just show up at your doorstep or fall into your house/office through your roof. And sometimes, you can even feel so pressured by your own success, you start going to places you you shouldn’t.
BUT if going every and anywhere in the name of visibility equalled success, everyone who has ever gone viral or been on a reality TV show, would be rich. And we know that’s not the case. There’s folk out here famous, yet broke and miserable.
Visibility is useless and irritating if you’re broke and/or unhappy, so you might need to take a break from the places you go.
2) You’re being seen by the wrong people
This tends to be an offshoot of #1 above. Cos if you go to the wrong places in the name of seeking visibility, you will definitely be seen by the wrong people.
Even when you’re on your own and you’re minding your own business (so you’re not going to the wrong places), not everyone who notices you and proceeds to slide into your DMs or show up at your office or book an appointment, is your person.
Not everyone who appears to be (or says they are) your bestie, mentor, student, staff, coach or customer is your person. It doesn’t matter how much money or experience they have, what they look like or where they went to school.
If you haven’t learned to recognise people for what they are – as opposed to what your ego or emotion prefers – being visible to certain people is only going to hurt your brand, as you’ll never be good enough for the wrong person(s).
I refer to it as trying to sell meat to vegetarians. It doesn’t matter how much work you’ve put into creating a meaty dish or the reason anyone is a vegetarian, they’re just not going to want what you’re selling.
Apart from being taken for granted, one of the major issues that comes from being in front of the wrong people is that you’ll feel pressured or be compelled to do things to prove yourself. You’ll say things you’re not supposed to – not necessarily because the things are false, but cos they’re irrelevant.
So, yes, you may have visibility now, but being in front of the wrong people is why you’re not able to relax. You’re competent in your role, but you’re constantly in a desperate energy, cos you’re trying so hard to perform for people around whom you really should be keeping quiet for your safety and sanity.
And this might be why your brand is proof of visibility gone wrong.
3) You have no personal brand
If you’re wondering what lack of a personal brand has to do with why visibility is hurting your brand – especially if you’re a woman in Law or Media – please, read on.
According to Google, a personal brand is a widely recognised and largely-uniform perception or impression of an individual based on their experience, expertise, competencies, actions and/or achievements within a community, industry, or the marketplace at large.
A personal brand is what you’re known for, but it’s a bit more than your reputation. It’s the thing that makes you stand out, even in a crowded market.
I remember how difficult it was for me to get any book sales, despite my visibility, till I had clarified my author brand 👇
As Chioma Nnani, I write multicultural fiction for women aged 18+ who want to be strong, independent and fulfilled.
So, you might not be an author; you may be a lawyer, presenter, OAP, dancer, singer or influencer. What kind are you? Who is your audience? What are you trying to achieve?
You might not be able to answer all of the above questions right now. Your answers might even change a year from now cos your desires, goals or needs can change or evolve with time.
And that’s OK. But if visibility is going to work for your brand, you need to figure out your personal brand.
Apart from saving you time and energy, your personal brand ensures that you are properly packaged to be noticed by the right persons, so you can achieve your goals.
But when you have no personal brand, it’s not clear what you do – no matter how visible you are.
4) You’re not asking for what you want
I don’t know if it’s a gender thing or a cultural issue, but many women from certain races do not ask for what they want. And that’s why visibility might be hurting your brand.
So, you could be in the right place(s), being noticed by the right person(s) and you might even have a strong personal brand.
But you’re not asking for anything you want because (even when you know what you want), perhaps you’re afraid to ask. Or you don’t want be seen as too forward. Or arrogant. Too ‘up yourself’.
In #3 above, I wrote out my author brand statement. But do you see how it makes even more sense for me to write As Chioma Nnani, I write multicultural fiction for women aged 18+ who want to be strong, independent and fulfilled. Click here for more information? That way, people (readers, librarians, booksellers, reviewers and media folk) who are interested in such content, know the next step to take.
There’s a story that was told years ago about a Nollywood actress (actually, she gave the interview) saying that she didn’t ask for anything when her movie got a private, presidential screening in Aso Rock. If records and recollections are correct, hers was the first movie in the Nigerian film industry to have that honour.
I remember reading that interview and being amazed at her pride in the wasted opportunity. Cos unless you’re unserious, uneducated or straight up under a spell, how dare you leave the presence of a king the exact same way you came? And even boast about it?!
Were you so surprised by the invitation, that you went totally unprepared?
Did you get there, only to be distracted by food, decorations or something else?
Or were you too starstruck and too afraid to even think of, never mind make a coherent request?
Maybe, you’ve even been told that you just need to keep giving value and the money will come in eventually.
And you’re frustrated now because yes, you’ve got visibility, but you’re not getting what you want. You’re the one people call on to get things they want, done. But your own dreams are on the back-burner because nobody knows about your desires.
None of the lawyers in the country where you practise, knows you’re interested in entering a particular area of law. But you keep running errands around the office.
You’d really love to try out for an acting or presenting role, but nobody has ever seen your reel or self-tape. Yet, you’re attending all kinds of events – even the opening of an envelope – and posting on TikTok.
You’re on the social media wall of a celebrity, podcaster, YouTuber or book reviewer. But instead of pitching them in the appropriate way, you’re hoping they’ll just notice you and give you what you want.
You take the time do a blog post or record a podcast episode, yet people don’t know what you want them to do after that cos there’s no call to action. So, your content goes viral, but that’s where it ends.
People cannot read your mind to know what you want for your life or career. But wasted opportunities to ask for what you want, will ensure that even your visibility hurts your brand.
I help young women who are in Law OR Media to develop strong voices, solid careers and stable personal lives. If you’re interested in getting such results, apply here to ask for my help.
Do you now know why visibility hasn’t been working for your brand? Let me know in the comments section below.