Just like corporate branding, personal branding is a representation of you on an individual level. For some people, personal branding is synonymous to social media influencer, but that doesn’t have to be the case for everyone.
The presentation of personal branding online involves creating a voice, personality, logo, biography and even the topics you want to be known for. What you don’t want to end up with is a boring and robotic account. Perhaps even worse, a mismatch between your online persona and your real life persona.
1. Fully Update Your Social Media Accounts
Decide which social media account(s) you are going to focus on, and delete any old accounts that you are no longer using. For the networks you will be using, make sure all of your information is complete and accurate. This will help you to build traffic to the networks you want to showcase your work. It can also remove any potential “questionable” content from years past that doesn’t have a positive effect on your professional image.
2. Identify Your Area of Expertise
Everyone’s an expert at something – whether it’s content marketing or having an encyclopaedic knowledge of your favorite TV show. Is it time for you to experiment a bit more? What type of content have you created that your followers have responded to most? Can you replicate this with other similar content? The more unique and engaging content you create on your chosen topic of expertise, the more your followers will start to think of you as a leader in your chosen field.
3. Audit Your Personal Brand
The easiest way to audit yourself is to search online for your name. Make sure your internet browser’s cache is cleared or that you’ve opened the search in a private browsing window. This way you can make sure you’re receiving the same results as anyone else would be when searching for your name.
4. Share Content On a Regular Basis
In the early days of social media, the more you posted, the more engagement you could drum up. Today, however, over-posting leads to fatigue and annoyance. You want to keep the lines of communication open with your audience, but you also don’t want to overshare so much that you look desperate. The sweet spot is posting around 3-4 times per week for individuals.
5. Analyze Your Strategy
Take time to look at your social media analytics just like you would for a company. Are you responding and engaging with people you follow or are you only sending Tweets out with the hope that someone will reply?
6. Find & Join Groups
Facebook and LinkedIn both offer thousands of opportunities to join groups focused on specific industries or topics. Use the search bar on each network to find groups that are linked to your specific area of expertise, then you’ll be able to share your insights and build authority around your personal brand. Keep in mind that industry groups may be overcrowded with your competitors, so smaller, topic-based groups may be more fruitful in terms of reaching your audience.