Just about everyone is on social media these days. The prevalence of wifi, cheap digital phones, and too many social media platforms means we are all online somewhere, whether we like it or not. If you work in the space, it's even worse. You run campaigns for major brands, you assist the CEO to learn Twitter and explain that Snapchat is now for marketing, not sexting. When you get home the last thing you probably want to do is write a blog and build your LinkedIn following. I mean LinkedIn is so naff right? Surely it's more value to Insta the raw desert you just created. Right? Well that depends on a few things. Before I tell you how to market yourself in a 'hyper digital' world let me tell you this.
Personal branding is the convergence of three key forces: the prevalence of internet, smart phones, and social media. These trends have created an always on, information everywhere environment where people can search anything, anytime. Personal privacy is a thing of the past (according to Mark Zuckerberg) as we can all Google anyone, anytime. I'm sure you look people up before meetings and of course they do the same. We can see their photos, friends, likes, dislikes, education and more. We don't even question it these days, it's just standard business practice.
Even though we know that people look us up and that we do the same, most people I meet wouldn't know what Google says about them. If I asked you what are the first five links when you type in your name, could you tell me? If you can't you are not really controlling your personal brand. See the issues is most people know they 'should' manage their personal brand, but the vast majority are not doing it.
Perhaps they don't have the knowledge or skills so are unable to do it. Some don't care as they don't see the importance and others think LinkedIn isn't cool.
I'm going to make a big leap here and possibly offend some people by saying that most people working in marketing today don't really understand how to use social media. Of course I am not talking to you, it's those sitting next to you. But pay attention so you can help those poor souls.
Here are my top five tips for managing your personal brand.
1. Your brand isn't you. It's time to realise that even though your brand is about you, it isn't you. It's an advertisement of you. Just like an ad for Hawaii isn't like being in Hawaii. Your LinkedIn profile is like a brochure designed to communicate to your audience.
2. LinkedIn is work. Sure we love hanging out on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube but LinkedIn is the most effective social site to get your next role or whatever other business opportunity you want. You don't need to love it, you just need to work it. Think of it as the green smoothie of the social media world.
3. Your brand takes effort. To stand out from the crowd you need to put the work in. Just like rock hard abs, your brand requires effort. Invest 10 minutes a day on your brand and it could yield massive dividends. I had a 100% pay rise in 12 months just by using LinkedIn well. That's pretty good ROI for a few minutes a day.
4. Connect to people. If they can't see you, they can't hire you. Connect far and wide to people as you never know where that next opportunity may come from. The new guy in accounts might not be your cup of tea but doesn't mean his dad/brother/sister doesn't run the coolest new agency.
5. Create content. Content is still king after all this time. The more great content you share the more people know you and what you stand for. It also has the added benefit of annoying the people you don't like. You wouldn't work for them anyhow so why would you want them approaching you for work. By polarising your audience you create a strong tribe. These are the people who will spot those sweet opportunities that never get to SEEK.
There you have it, my top five tips for marketing yourself if you work in marketing. If you want to get your brand working for you, click below and let's chat.
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