Use Social Media to Build Your Personal BRAND
Social media is all the rage these days. You see it EVERYWHERE! Virtually the whole world is one global online social networking village, between the 800 million users on Facebook and 120 million on LinkedIn.
How can you build your personal brand in this global network, without having your voice drowned out?
First, you need to understand that social media is another marketing platform through which you can extend your personal brand. Define your core competencies, values, beliefs, qualifications, and interests. Your strategy to build your brand online should supplement/suport your offline networking activities an more traditional marketing efforts (PR, print, broadcast, outdoor advertising, direct mail, etc.)
To that end, you MUST develop a strategic social media plan that integrates with your marketing plan and includes the following:
* A comprehensive and COMPELLING definition of your personal brand in significant detail with core messaging including your value proposition, core competencies and unique selling proposition – WHAT MAKES YOU UNIQUE?;
* The segments you plan on targeting;
* The 3-4 industries you wish to pursue;
* Industry associations, networking groups, blogs, events, think tanks, consortiums, journalists, and subject matter experts.
Armed with your strategic social media plan, you need to limit the scope of your approach so it is manageable. Begin by completing your FREE profiles on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and MeetUp. Commit to investing 15-30 minutes each weeknight and 45 minute to an hour each weekend day for 1-2 months.
You will need to create your own website and blog to serve as the core of your social networking efforts. Two of the more popular blogging services that are both FREE are Google Blogger and WordPress.
WordPress is a much more robust publishing platform. There are many free seminars/workshops/courses offered online and near you that can help you get started.
A blog is a recurring regularly scheduled article you publish on specific topics. The typical length is 600-800
Understand that there are certain guidelines you should follow when developing your social media strategy. For starters, it’s NEVER about the QUANTITY or size of your network but the QUALITY of your online relationships. A great TOP-10 list from Shama Hyder Kabani’s: “the zen of social media marketing“:
* Decide where you stand on the types of relationship you want to have and the kind of information you want to disseminate.
* Determine what constitutes social media and the social networking resources you can utilize.
* Clarify who owns what when it comes to the content you create directly or re-purpose/republish from others.
* Keep all your confidential information PRIVATE.
* Decide who is responsible for creating, distributing, and monitoring as well as performing analytics to gauge your social media ROI.
* Dictate the rules of engagement without being a dictator.
* Address taboo topics.
* Have a system for monitoring the social sphere.
* Make training easily available for all your employees that are tasked with being social media ambassadors in your organization
* Have a crisis plan – see Blackberry!
There are a Gazillion resources out there to get started. A random list of the more popular ones include:
Social Media Today