Answers to all your questions

1Why do I need to develop a brand?

To generate awareness for yourself or your business. A brand is who you are, whom you want to be, and what you want to be known for. Whether you know this or not, you are a brand. Everyone is a brand. At work, you represent your company. When you are at a bar or restaurant, you represent yourself and your personal brand unless you are wearing your work shirt. Your brand will help you connect with customers. Think about celebrities and how their names and personalities drive revenue. Their followers don't necessarily care if the products are good or bad or if the celebrities actually use them. As a matter of fact, they know they don't.

2Should I create a personal or business brand?

It depends. Personal brands have become the driving force of a business. Rihanna is Fenty; Steve Jobs is Apple, and we hear more about Elon Musk than his businesses. Your personal brand can ruin your business and vise versa. Your followers/customers can't separate the two. You don't always need or have both, but a great personal brand can drive revenue and grow faster and bigger than your business brand.

3Should I create my brand or hire a professional?

DIYing a brand is probably the hardest thing one can do. If you can hire a professional, I encourage you to do that. Building a widely-recognizable brand will probably take years. Your brand lives with you forever; it should be carefully crafted, fit and grow with you and your audience.

4Should I trademark my brand name?

Yes. Just a few years ago, Beyonce won a case against someone using her daughter's name. It will help you in the future, do what you can to avoid future legal disputes. Hire a good lawyer as soon as you can afford one.

5Can my brand ever work against me?

Yes. When Donald Trump announced he was running for president, many people could not imagine him as president. Mainly because of what people knew of his past, pre-presidential run. Famous people and pre-fame Twitter don't go together either.