Have you ever googled yourself to see what comes up?
If you are using LinkedIn to develop your business network, look like an expert in your field and try and stand out from the crowd, have you thought about the image you portray? As with anything in life, you don’t get a second chance to make a good first impression!
This is known as your personal brand.
If you are active on social media, especially LinkedIn, then your personal branding is really important as it can help drive your business forward with no cost involved, just a bit of time and effort.
Personal branding can impact your turnover
Having worked in the corporate world my whole career with a fantastic company brand to hide behind, I left and set up my own business in 2017. Since then, I have spent the past 3 and half years learning about the importance of personal branding and working hard on the brand I portray to drive my own business forward; which has resulted in a positive impact on my company turnover, business leads and referral opportunities.
One of the best pieces of advice I can give anyone to start with is to separate their personal social media away from their professional. Make sure that all of the settings on your personal accounts are set to private, go through all of your connections and get rid of anyone who is not a friend or family member and invite them to your professional pages instead.
I would also suggest that you have “company pages” and your own “professional page” so that you can separate what the business is selling from what your advice, guidance and opinion is. For example, I currently run all of the KD Recruitment Social Media pages, but I also have my own LinkedIn page where I share company information and give advice, guidance and my opinion as well as my expertise within the Recruitment Industry. This means that your business page would advertise the service or products you sell and your own page would show testimonials and give advice from your own personal perspective.
Before you start….
There are a few things to think about before you start posting on sites like LinkedIn:
- Embrace the opportunity to develop your personal brand, network and commit 100% – Don’t do it half hearted.
- Let go of the fear of what other people will think about you. You will never be able to post anything if you don’t have conviction in what you’re saying, and you can never please everyone all of the time.
- Think of the top 3 things you want people to feel when they read your posts.
- Think of the top 3 things that you know more about than anyone else. – What makes you an expert, what is your USP, what is your WHY?
- Update and enhance your profile to the max.
What content should you be posting?
Before you can start posting content, you need to think about what you want to post about and where you can get this information.
- You can follow hashtags that are relevant to your industry and read what other people are sharing, rehash and post your version or opinion.
- You can listen to industry podcasts, read relevant publications, blogs, books and emails to share industry knowledge.
- Follow influencers and others within your industry to see what they are posting about.
- Watching videos and YouTube clips
- Sharing your company page posts
- What are your other interests? what are you passionate about? what is your social responsibility?
- Testimonials and recommendations – Ask for them from previous clients, colleagues and managers. Sharing these regularly will show who you are and how trustworthy you are.
When you post, you should try and ask for the audience’s opinion, thoughts or advice as this will entice them to engage with you and comment. If they do then always respond and try and ask a question back. The more comments you get, the better the reach of your post (approx. 30% of your connections will see a post initially), the more engagement, the more people will see it.
How often should you post and how to manage your profile?
You should start by posting 3 times a week and building from there. I tend to post once a day first thing in the morning before I start work, however there is no ‘optimum’ time to post as everyone checks their social media at different times. However, be mindful that not everyone will be on LinkedIn on an evening or weekends so your audience is narrowed.
You should spend 9 minutes each day commenting and engaging with 9 people as this will get you noticed by them and their followers which will result in your connection requests increasing.
Spend time thinking and documenting all your post ideas in advance of needing them. I personally use the notes function on my phone as everything is there ready for me to copy and paste when I am ready. I tend to write a weeks’ worth of posts in advance so that it isn’t too time consuming.
My last piece of advice is to respond to all DM’s. You want to come across as credible and the best way to do that is to engage and reply.
Once you have committed to your online presence and personal brand, you should start to see a difference in the engagement, leads and referrals and then you can increase your activity. Always think about your audience and what you want to portray before you post or comment on anything, do not do anything just for the sake of it – have conviction in what you are doing.
Good luck, I hope you really make an impact with your Personal Branding.