There’s a commonly held misconception amongst small business owners that we must appear bigger than we really are in order to be taken seriously - and that is simply not the case. There is absolutely nothing shameful in being a solopreneur, or in running your business with your mum/ best friend/ husband. If anything, it’s something to be immensely proud of! Running your own business isn’t just a job, but a lifestyle choice - one that a great many people aren’t brave enough for. Those who have the guts to pour their hearts and souls into their business will always have my respect - it takes balls!
There’ve been so many times when I speak to a client about what they do and they refer to ‘we’… and I’ll question it, as I thought that they ran the business independently of anyone else. Then they’ll counter it by saying that, yes, it is just them - but that ‘we’ sounds more professional, more business-y, more convincing. Doesn’t it?
The truth is, that your story is something that absolutely nobody else has. The unique dynamic of your business, the things you believe in, the reason you do what you do - they’re all utterly original and yours. As small business owners we can feel so dwarfed by bigger names (and possibly a tad jaded by imposter syndrome - but that’s another story), that we feel as though we ought to behave differently in order to compete - yet we forget that big brands work incredibly hard to manufacture the spirit and authenticity which we possess without trying. We actually OWN our stories of passion and purpose and provenance, while theirs are fabricated by people employed to do their marketing, dreamt up in a soulless office. These same people are those who strategically employ influencers in an attempt to tap into the hearts of the communities within which we already reside. Because they so desperately want to appear real, and relateable, and authentic.
What I’m saying is don’t fear your story, and don’t hide behind anything in an attempt to make your business appear bigger, or to make it seem anything other than the wonderful enterprise that it already is. People buy stories. Let yours shine.