Personal Branding 101
Hello, one and all!
Today, I wanted to focus on what I love - social media! I'm going to be talk about a few things that you can do in order to create your own personal brand.
Now, I wrote something like this September of 2015, back when I was just starting to blog, but I wanted to give it a little update and go a little bit deeper into why personal branding is important.
Alright, so what do I mean by a personal brand?
Well, if you're reading this, you might be a college student starting to think about employment and where you want to head in the future. You'll be sending in lots of resumes and cover letters to tons of potential employers.
Here's the deal: the companies get sent TONS of resumes and cover letters. Some of these other applicants are as qualified as you... and some of them aren't. The key part of this is to add something to your resume and cover letter that makes it UNIQUE and makes it STAND OUT.
And you know what that is: Your personal brand! You literally treat yourself as if you are a company and you are trying to show off what your company does. It helps the potential employer get to you on a deeper level.
Your personal brand can include the following things: a logo, a mission statement, a portfolio, contact information, and more. These are all important things that you should eventually get to. However, one of the key parts of this personal branding that everyone can start immediately is really strong social media. You will want your potential employers to look at it.
Let's go into how to exactly brand yourself online...
This is an easy way to make all of your social media uniquely you. Find a username that works for you - it could be just your name, something fun, something involving your passion. Then stick with it. Make it your Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and more. Roll with that username. This is because if an employer or potential coworker asked you where they could find you online, you just say "Look up ______"
BIOS = opportunity
This small space is an opportunity for you to explain to potential new followers and employers who you are. You don't have much space, so you have to work with what you go.
I would include things like:
- where you're from
- where you go to school
- your email address
- what you do
- something quirky about you
- THE POSSIBILITIES ARE ENDLESS!
There are ways to format this information to make it easy to read using emojis, dots, dashes, and lines. Scope around the internet and see what draws you in and go for that.
Another important part about these social media profiles is the opportunity to link to a website. Now, you might not have a blog or something you update constantly, but you should definitely have it link to your portfolio or another social media platform you use constantly. If you're being strictly professional, you could even link it to your LinkedIn account.
Creating unique content on a regular basis
This is important! There's no reason to have really solid social media accounts if you aren't posting content regularly! Here are some really easy ways to be constantly making content on social media:
- Post what you're up to on Instagram
- This could be what you're wearing, where you're traveling, what you're drinking at a coffee shop, who you're with, what you're doing!
- Tweet out articles that relate to your passion/what you want to do
- Retweet interesting business articles, social media trends, and more!
- Retweet & share what your potential employers are up to.
- if they announce a new client, congratulate them! If they are hiring, let them know you're applying!
- Engage with your followers and comment on their content and what they are up to.
- Spend at least 20 minutes a day giving some love back to your followers!
There are so many opportunities to create content online that there's no reason for your latest Instagram post to be from "18 weeks ago" or your latest tweet to be from last month!
You can be professional and fun!
Company culture is a big thing that different businesses are working - trying to bring together the personality of the company with what they do. You can do that yourself with your own social media!
Don't think that you need to be strictly professional and talking about what where you want to work all the time. Have fun with it.. Share where you are with your friends. Post a meal you really enjoyed! Talk about an app you've been loving.
You are basically trying to show employers and potential followers beyond what you do! It's okay to get personal and have fun with it because that will show what makes you unique.
However, there is a fine line between fun posts and unprofessional posts - aka nothing offensive, illegal (i.e. underage drinking), or controversial.
Follow similar content creators
This is a big one that I think a lot of social media accounts are missing. They are so focused on their own content and what they are doing that they don't support other content creators that are doing the same thing. This is key! If you want people to engage with your content, engage with theirs!
Social media is nothing but a huge space full of communities.
Find your community and dive into it. If you're a fashion blogger, follower other fashion bloggers in your area and see if you can collab. If you're a model, follow other models and see where they've been working and find collaboration with up and coming photographers. The possibilities are endless.
I would say the rule of thumb is this: Block off at least a half an hour a day to strictly just liking and commenting on other people's content. You can split this up as 6 five minute sessions - you can do it however you like. It's really fun and will definitely get you some engagement in return.
I hope some of these tips help you get started with your personal brand! If you have any questions or anything you would like me to cover, you can send them them to me here:
Thanks for reading! See you back here on Thursday!
Fletcher Rowe | @feistyfletch