As business professionals, we all understand the importance of having a professional brand. It allows us to communicate our value to others easily, the skills and experience that make us stand out from everyone else in our industry, and the reasons why we should be promoted to the next level when it comes time for that. However, sometimes we only focus on our brand while we are job searching. That’s a mistake. In order to keep progressing in our career, whether that’s moving up or on to another industry later on, it’s essential to find ways to strengthen your brand on a regular basis. Here are three underutilized tools that can help you continue to build your brand through social media.
Write and Publish Articles on LinkedIn. Many professionals understand the importance of being active on LinkedIn, but leave the writing to those who are more easily recognized in an industry or those that they look up to in a career. But if you have been successful so far in developing your expertise in your industry (and even if you haven’t!), you must realize that you have certain skills, knowledge or experience that others in your industry could benefit from. You do, trust me. You have something to share. So don’t hold back - share your knowledge with others! It doesn’t have to be a best-selling article. It just needs to provide insight into a common challenge or issue/topic in your industry. Or a process you have found that helps you with your job (that’s ok to share and be viewed by your competition). Or an opinion on new software that has just come out and been helpful to you. The goal is to provide information that can be useful to others, and begins to position you as an expert in your field. You want to sound authentic, but don’t be overly casual. Always be professional in your choice of topic, your language and tone. You will also want to pay attention to proper grammar and formatting. Write a draft and have someone close to you proofread it. Once you post your article, make sure to promote it on your other social media platforms. Note that this tip references writing an article, not just sharing another post. You can share other posts, but write something about them versus just re-posting. And mix in publishing your own articles as well. That is the only way you will truly become a thought leader in your field and truly enhance your brand. Even posting an article once a month is a start, and in some cases, plenty, in order to be seen as someone who is active in your field.
Leverage Pinterest. Yes, Pinterest is not just for finding great recipes and DIY projects anymore. It has expanded enormously. You can also effectively build your professional brand with this social platform-not just your recipe box. Make sure to create a new account for professional use, separating it from your personal account. The same basic rules apply; you will want to engage with other users by responding to comments and likes and finding new people to follow. By using attractive images you can create how-to images, links to your blog or LinkedIn profile, and pin helpful articles for others in your industry. Take a look at what others in your industry are pinning to their boards for ideas, then think about what new information you could add to the mix. For some examples of how to leverage Pinterest from a professional/business standpoint, check out our Pinterest page.
Create YouTube Videos. Creating videos can seem intimidating for some, but they can be a very effective tool in strengthening your brand. You don’t need the best video equipment to get started with your video, just good lighting and a smartphone with good megapixel quality. You will want to create some kind of script and practice before you push the record button. Practice until the thoughts come naturally, again it is very important to come across as natural and authentic. Then do a test recording and watch it. Do you come across as relaxed and confident? If you don’t sound sure of yourself, that will definitely come across do your viewers so practice enough until the whole process becomes more natural for you. Talk about your take on an article you liked that is related to your industry, tips for reaching the next level in your position, or just a good experience that you had leveraging your strengths in your field and how others can implement it. Don’t be afraid to share your knowledge with others. For some examples of how to leverage YouTube from a professional/business standpoint, take a look at our YouTube page.
Guest Blogger Hallie Crawford is a certified career coach and founder of HallieCrawford.com. Her team of coaches help people find their dream job and make it a reality. She is regularly featured as an expert in the media including the Wall Street Journal, CNN, and US News & World Report. Visit her website at www.HallieCrawford.com for more information about her team's career coaching services. Set up a Complimentary Career Strategy Session with Hallie Crawford to get advice on your career goals. *Mention you saw us on Talent Zoo and receive a free bonus if you purchase a product or sign up for coaching.*
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