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Monday, December 7, 2015

Where Should You Be Promoting Your Personal Brand?

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Where Should You Be Promoting Your Personal Brand?



Everyone has a personal brand, but some people aren’t sure how or where they are—or whether they should be–promoting it. Here are some places you can be promoting your personal brand on a regular basis.
Related: Personal Branding: The Secret To A Flawless Introduction

1. In-person networking.

Nothing trumps getting out of the house and attending networking events that allow you to shine and let people get to know people one-on-one. In spite of the fact that it is easy to sit at your computer and participate in social media through the multitude of available platforms, the best way to promote your personal brand is to get out of the house and network. The opportunities are limitless, but for many Introverts, the prospect of getting out and meeting people is daunting.
Nevertheless, the best way to promote your personal brand is to get out and meet people. Attend Meetup groups, Chamber of Commerce meetings, political rallies, alumni get-togethers, neighborhood parties, lunch meetings for people in your industry, and any other event that you can find to attend. Nothing beats meeting people in person. And be prepared to hand out business cards while you are at it (a bonus way of promoting your brand).

2. Optimize your LinkedIn profile.

Assuming that you are following the advice in #1, the next place to promote your personal brand is online, and the best way to create both a personal and a professional brand is to optimize your LinkedIn profile. Make sure you create a profile that presents the brand you want to present. Do you have a great head shot? Is your headline filled with keywords that tell what you do as opposed to your job title? Don’t waste that space! Your headline should represent you in terms of the problem(s) you solve and the talent or expertise you can bring to a particular position. Determine the best way to present yourself and don’t be afraid to tweak your headline as you refine your focus or evolve in your brand.

3. Use Twitter.

Twitter is another online platform that can be used to present your online brand and to promote yourself to a target market. If you are job hunting, follow companies that you think you might like to investigate as possible employers. If you are a hiring manager, connect with individuals who may bring value to your company. Twitter is an excellent forum for promoting yourself if you know how to do it and use it strategically. Be careful not to get caught up in the heat of the moment and Tweet something you might regret later. Twitter can be a double-edged sword in that regard, so utilize it but respect its power.

4. Write articles or posts to establish your brand.

LinkedIn allows users to post freely, so take advantage of that opportunity to showcase yourself and your brand. Additionally, write articles, essays, white papers, etc. and publish them yourself on your blog or your personal website, or offer your article to another medium…a magazine, a newspaper opinion piece, an article for a trade journal, etc. Get yourself established as an expert and write to share your unique thoughts, ideas, and insights.

5. Be consistent.

Regardless of the forum or format you choose or the strategy you select in promoting your personal brand, be consistent. Don’t fill out your LinkedIn profile and then forget it. Log in at least every few days. Participate in Group Discussions. Network on a regular basis. The same advice goes for participating in Twitter or writing or networking. Establishing your brand is not a “one and done” proposition. Establishing your brand means being consistent in your efforts and being strategic in your approach.
Even though the concept of personal branding has been around for a while, I find that a lot of people fail to recognize that they already have a brand. Many people are unaware of the way they are showing up either in person or online. Every interaction, every email, every single thing you do throughout any given day whether it is on the job or during an evening out on the town is part of who you are and what your brand is. Those individuals who are most successful in the business world are acutely aware of the brand they have and the brand they want. You can always “re-brand” yourself if necessary, but it would be smarter for you to start off on the right foot and establish the brand you want and then tweak it as you grow and evolve.

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Kitty Boitnott, Ph.D., NBCT is a former educator turned Career Transition and Job Strategy Coach specializing in working with teachers who are experiencing the painful symptoms of job burnout. She also works with mid-career professionals from all walks of life who find themselves at a career crossroads either by chance or by choice. Learn more about Kitty at TeachersinTransition.com or at Boitnott Coaching.com.
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