Wondering how you can put yourself out there?
No, we’re not talking about Bumble, Tinder or OkCupid, but about something just as important to your life – your personal brand.
Your personal brand is basically what you put on your social media, how you market yourself, and ultimately what forms your reputation. Think of it like online marketing – but for yourself. It’s how teens are getting famous on TikTok, and celebrities are raking in millions from their Instagram posts – by having successful personal brands.
If you’re guilty of stalking a potential date on social media before meeting them in real life, then you shouldn’t be surprised to know that HR professionals and recruiters are doing the same to you before they make their hiring decisions.
And that’s exactly why you need to make sure that what’s out there on social media truly represents you and your professional image as well. Having a personal brand is no longer akin to having an edge, it’s a necessity for anyone looking to get their dream job, grow their business, or move up the ladder in their industry.
Building a successful personal brand can shape your career opportunities and connect you with like-minded professionals or rewarding partnerships. It can help build credibility in your industry and position you as an expert in your field with honour and prestige.
But how do you create a strong brand on social media that accurately presents you as you want it to? Call it brand building if you will, and here’s how you can do it:
Define your interest and expertise
What are your interests? What are you passionate about? What are you good at? Answer these questions and you’ll have a list of the topics for your content. If you’re interested in digital marketing, social media marketing, or brand building, these are the themes you should focus on. By providing thoughtful opinions, useful content and relevant tips and information, you’ll soon be able to position yourself as an expert in the digital marketing field.
Ensure your profiles are consistent across all platforms
You wouldn’t imagine a business using a different logo or colour theme on different social media pages or even in different stores – the same goes for your personal brand. Let’s look at IKEA – a successful example of brand building. With their signature blue and yellow colours and organized pathways through the various sections consistent across all global stores, the Swedish giant has made it very easy for consumers to instantly recognize their branding and style, and feel comfortable throughout their shopping experience. To maintain consistency, be sure to use the same logo or profile photo, name and handle and style across all your digital profiles. This makes it easier for people to find you, identify you, and relate with you. If you’re just starting out, be sure to reserve your name or handle across all the platforms if possible. You’ll also want to maintain the same, or similar, aesthetic across all visual content – achievable through video templates, photo filters, and a well-designed colour palette. Not to forget – your bio. This is where you could summarize your job, industry, achievements, area of expertise. A 1-2 line statement that either has the keywords you want to be associated with (e.g. digital marketer, social media expert) or what you can provide for a client or employer who comes looking for you (e.g. helping business optimize their digital marketing initiatives and transform brands into global leaders)
Create original content
While curating a selection of industry leaders’ content can be beneficial in showcasing your taste and thoughts, nothing beats creating your own content. Whether you choose to write informational blogs, shoot educational videos, or create artistic photos and infographics – every content piece you create contributes to the reputation you build for yourself. This is the opportunity for you to voice your opinions and establish your own style.
If you can post 10 Snapchats in a row of your last night out, posting consistently to build your branded social media presence should be a piece of cake! By sharing content frequently on your pages, you ensure that you stay in front of your audience, develop brand recognition, and be known for providing value regularly. Regular posting also contributes to an increase in the number of followers, be it Twitter or Instagram. The ideal number of posts per day for various platforms are: Facebook (once a day), Twitter (up to 5 times a day), LinkedIn (once a day), Instagram (1-2 times a day). With social media marketing scheduling tools such as Hootsuite or Buffer, it’s a great idea to create content in bulk and schedule it in advance so you don’t have to worry about forgetting to post, missing an optimal time in the feed.
Network with your community
You’ve made your profiles, created genuine content, and the last thing you need to do is connect with like-minded individuals. Social media makes it very easy to engage with followers and businesses – so be sure to like, comment or share content that you like from others in the community. The more you engage with people, the more people will engage back. It can also help you create relationships and potentially open up professional opportunities. If you appreciate someone’s work, don’t be afraid to reach out to them! Feel free to ask for advice, offer helpful suggestions, and provide value in every single engagement. You never know when you may find a mentor, your next job, or even a big break in your career – all thanks to your personal brand on social media.
If you want to learn more about how to market your brand on social media, check out this digital marketing course for beginners.