Social media and personal branding: an essential guide

In 2019, I presented information to several groups about the aspect of personal branding and its effectiveness online. I asserted that a strong social media brand could be:

1. An asset

2. An assistant

3. And an amplifier

A social media brand is an asset in that it provides valuable digital real estate in the event someone is searching for you or someone with your skills or expertise. It is an assistant, because it always works on your behalf, even on a 24/7 "always-on" approach. Finally, it's an amplifier because, in a world where it can be challenging to get your voice heard in a corporate environment, social media can amplify your voice to ensure it falls on the right audience's ears.

Where to get started

Getting started in creating an active social media personal brand doesn't have to be a daunting task. You just have to ensure you check off a few boxes on the right digital platforms.

For many executives or business leaders, these platforms include LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

LinkedIn

I like thinking of LinkedIn as a social media whiteboard. What does a whiteboard in your office do? It allows you to collaborate, ask questions, form ideas, and demonstrate your knowledge base.

For many people, this means posting content relevant to your industry. For others, LinkedIn is the opportunity to discuss what you're working on right now (to some extent), treating it like a "work journal."

Twitter

Twitter is a content waterfall. A real-time deluge of information. Therefore, it can be easy to get lost in the shuffle and not enjoy everything this platform has to offer.

Because of Twitter's attention-deficit, each user has the opportunity to talk about many different topics in a given day.

On Twitter, you don't have to "stick to your day job." You can discuss work, but you can also discuss sports or anything else you're interested in.

Click here for some tips on how to make Twitter work for you.

Facebook

Now, Facebook is all about relationships and connections. This channel is the one in which you're more likely to be connected with family members. The most effective content on this channel is going to be that which focuses on your relationships with others.

That said, you can share information about work or what you do for a living, but it may not resonate unless there's a personal tone or commentary with it. Think of Facebook as a place where you have to explain your job to your parents, which can often be tricky.