It’s okay if you ignored my advice back in October. It’s even understandable if you overlooked my tips to start planning in November and December. But now that we’re in the New Year, you can no longer keep ignoring your personal brand.
If you’re planning to change jobs, looking for a promotion, launching a new business or podcast, or even if you’re just wanting to expand your social media presence, addressing your personal brand should be high on the proverbial to-do list.
I understand that this can be an overwhelming task. I have conversations with professional service providers, celebrities, athletes, and philanthropists every day on this very topic. Like you, most are confused as to where to start. Or in an effort to save time, what’s the absolute minimum they need to do to get by.
Below is a mix of entry- and intermediate-level tips and tools I strongly recommend that you execute before the end of January.
You’ve likely Googled yourself for fun, but there’s an actual practicality to this self-research. Review the first three to five pages under your name search. Click here for what to do should you find something incorrect or unflattering.
Go through all your social media accounts, all the way back to when they were established, to remove any unflattering or questionable posts or images. Also, untag yourself from any unflattering posts made by others.
Make sure you’re maximizing your LinkedIn account by adding all current and past work and additional career-related information. LinkedIn is the general go-to platform when others want to learn more about you or your company – making it the one online platform that you shouldn’t neglect.
Having social media platforms without an appropriate headshot is a major faux pas. If you haven’t gotten a proper headshot in more than three years, it’s time to schedule a session with a photographer.
Cultivate Online Relationships
Your network is your net worth, so what are you doing to cultivate all those LinkedIn contacts? Create a plan to ensure that you’re staying connected throughout the year to your online network in a real way. You never know when a random touchpoint could lead to a major opportunity.
Identify Content Tools
If you plan to self-manage your brand, be sure to research and access tools that will make your life easier, i.e. editing apps, graphic design apps, publishing platforms, etc. Click here for an article that has done the heavy lifting for you. Apps and platforms can range from free to rather expensive, and more doesn’t always mean better so shop around.
Create a Content Goal
When you have a goal in mind you’re less likely to create “junk” content. Junk content is usually filler creative, i.e. images, video, blog posts—material that doesn’t provide any value to your target audience and/or your designated goal. Whether you’re sharing and/or commenting on content created by others or your own original content, make sure that it fulfills your plan and personas. Otherwise you’re just creating noise which will ultimately turn your audiences off.
Also, if you plan out your content on a calendar or even a Word doc, you’re more likely to be creating posts that are useful, entertaining, and/or more personalized to your audience. Finally, if you stay focused on your analytics you’ll begin to see a pattern of what’s working for you and what isn’t.
Stay Abreast of Trends
Social media platforms and their functionality can change in the blink of an eye. Staying on top of these trends will allow you to better plan your usage and content creation. Click here for an article with many ways to stay in the know.
Of course, if all else fails, you know where to find me. I’m happy to help if you need assistance with brainstorming, creating a strategy, writing, editing, or something more. The point is: getting started and staying consistent is the key to your personal brand growth in 2019.