Managing your personal brand
One of the most useful things you can do to assist your job search and hiring prospects is to manage your personal brand. To effectively manage your online reputation and brand the best strategy is to be proactive rather than reactive.
Many people can often fall into the trap of the past and what is of equal importance is building your personal brand for the future. Ask yourself a hard question, how often do you add new content or put out information that positively helps to build your own personal brand?
If you answered, not very often or not at all it might be a good time to start building and managing your personal brand. Starting to focus on publishing new content can start to build your reputation and brand.
Use Google to help check your personal brand
Have you tried a simple search on Google to see what information comes up? When was the last time you did this? Have a quick check and see what information is most commonly found when people ‘look you up’ online. Your results can vary significantly and how your online brand is perceived is an important factor. Do you have an online brand that you like?
Do you have an online personal brand?
Are you paying attention to your own social network accounts, what does your personal profile look like or say about you on these networks? Are you commenting on blog posts, articles or forums?
If your personal brand on social media is a little less than desirable you can start to improve and manage your personal brand with new content and information that you want people to know about you.
Take time to remove or update any information that you feel is no longer complimentary or inline with how you want your profile to be viewed.
Updating your profile
Google and other search engines are constantly looking and updating information behind the scenes. Having up to date profiles with a regular flow of new articles or information can help to promote the personal brand that is more aligned with who you are and how you want to be perceived.
Simple steps such as having a good clear and well-taken profile picture on your LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter or similar accounts can really help. Consider a professional photographer for a few profile shots. You may be surprised at the difference this can make to the standard smartphone pictures most people use.
Your profile summary
Take the time to develop and include a professional summary that can be added to your online profiles. This can form part of the summary you may use on your curriculum vitae too or anywhere you are looking for people to get a clear and accurate picture of you.
Do not rush your personal profile summary. Include the key areas and focus on the topics that are most aligned to help develop and enhance your personal brand.
Useful ways to build a personal brand
Do you have a personal website? There are many ways to start a personal profile online in addition to the usual social media platforms. A personal website or blog can be a helpful place to start posting and publishing information that you can link to from your other online profiles.
Do you own your own domain name or post articles on Medium or LinkedIn or do have an about me page? These can be used as simple and professional places to start to showcase who you are and what you do. There are many other options available.
Sharing your knowledge
If you are looking to build your online brand, sharing your knowledge, views and opinions can really help. Many people and companies use blogs, forums, videos and social media to promote and share information.
Consider adding your voice and reputation to some of these areas. Start to contribute to the conversation in areas of interest or on topics that are aligned with your personal brand.
Adding useful and insightful comments can start to enhance your personal brand and get you directly into a relevant conversation or topic.
Many companies and people are looking for proactive feedback and sharing your knowledge can help to promote your personal brand. This can help you to build up an expert profile which can be of real interest to potential employers and hiring managers.
Your personal content
It is good to remember that you need your comments, posts or content to reflect the professional you. It is okay to share a few lighter items and remember that people like to see some personality too. Be professional, polite, friendly and most importantly think, plan and consider the information you want to promote.
Ultimately your personal brand is a reflection of who you are, what you publish and how people perceive you. You may not be able to fully control how people perceive you but with some of these helpful tips, you can start to build and improve your personal brand. Your personal brand is constantly evolving and putting a little time aside to develop your own brand and online presence can be time well spent.