Written by, Elizabeth VanBeuren, HJ-PR Intern
Social media speaks volumes about an individual. With billions of users across a variety of social media platforms, it is vital that you create an online persona that resonates with your personal values and skills. Even if social media posting is infrequent, the content you publish, share, or interact with feeds into this public narrative.
Yet it is not necessarily easy. Building a personal brand takes time and effort. But with the right tools, you could be landing yourself your next career milestone or vastly expanding your network of valuable connections. Read more to learn six steps that will contribute to the growth of your personal brand.
- Keep Your Social Media Accounts Current
All social media accounts should be kept up to date as much as possible. Go through and delete old accounts you no longer use, as they might be inaccurate to your personal brand and how you want to portray yourself to the public. For the networks that you will be using, make sure all of your information is complete and accurate. This will help you direct social traffic to the networks that will showcase you.
By keeping your social media networks current it can also remove any ‘questionable’ content from previous years that do not positively represent your personal and professional image.
- Regularly Share Content Across Platforms
Over-posting is exhaustive and can lead to repetitiveness, for both yourself and your viewers. Keep lines of communication open, but avoid oversharing.
Pro Tip: Find that sweet spot; posting three to four times a week seems to be ideal for individuals.
- Import Your Contacts to Social Networks
You would be shocked to see how many people you already know on social media platforms that you currently use. Additionally, there are most likely many more that you have not connected with. Importing contacts from your mobile device or computer is a simple way to find people you are interested in connecting with but are missing.
You can also utilize friends and colleagues to connect with new people.
- Keep Social Media Posts Positive and Engaging
The last thing you want to do is paint yourself in a negative light. Use your personal brand to put a spotlight on yourself as an individual and how you stand out. Think of your content and interactions as a reflection of your personality and professionalism, similar to a resumé.
Create engaging content that will open viewers’ eyes to your personal endeavors. Include new achievements, places you have traveled, hobbies and more to give viewers an insight into your life. Social media is about expression of the individual first.
If concerns arise about not being able to share content that might voice controversial opinions or be deemed inappropriate, consider makking two sets of social media accounts: one for private use and one for personal use. Privately used social media accounts should be shared with small circles only such as friends and family, while personal use pages can be viewed by the public eye.
Pro Tip: Always read over employoer social media guidelines before beginning to post content. This ensures that you are not jeopardizing your career through social media posts that may not be allowed to be published.
- Find and Join Groups
Facebook and LinkedIn are excellent sources to join social groups. Thousands of opportunities lie out on the Internet to join groups on specific topics or industries. Through these, insight can be gained from others. You can also share your own personal expertise and build authority around your personal brand.
Industry groups may be overcrowded with larger, more competitive presences. This might make it difficult to gain credibility. Consider joining smaller groups first; they are a great way to begin reaching audiences.
- Keep Your Brand Tone, Image, and Voice Consistent
Sticking to a defined persona is important. Remain consistent to create more memorable and trustworthy relationships; credibility is key! It will take trial and error but it will allow you to find what fits your individual self best. Following these personal “brand guidelines” also helps control viewers perceptions of your brand. Remember, you can damage a reputation in five seconds, but it can take five years to positively gain back. Remain consistent to set up for success.
At the end of the day, showcase you! Be your true, authentic self both in person and online to remain transparent and consistent with your personal brand. Overall, that is what people want to see. Don’t be a fake versions of yourself, or else who are you truly lying to?