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These are the key points from our recent “Build your Personal Brand” seminar where I spoke about building your personal brand online. You can download a copy of the Personal Branding seminar – Build your brand online Powerpoint here.
Building your personal brand (reputation) online
Quite often it is the strong personal brands within a business that add the most value to a company’s brand. Having a strong personal brand – i.e., a strong professional reputation – means more money:
- you can charge more (or demand a higher salary)
- retain more clients with less work
- attract better business opportunities
- and you will get more referrals, even from people who have never actually used your services.
THE GOOD NEWS is that the internet makes it easier than ever to BUILD AUTHORITY and GROW YOUR REPUTATION so that you can receive these rewards. This is achieved by showcasing your expertise in key “touch points” on the web so that you can be found by your prospects; at the same time you can also be proactive and reach out to targeted audiences to drive your influence.
1. Use Google’s ‘Me on the Web’ to see how other people see you when they search your name
Unfortunately Googling yourself from your own browser will give a distorted view as it will be tailored to show you more of what you’re likely to be interested in. And that is usually yourself! This means your own website, LinkedIn and Facebook pages are likely to show up higher than they might do if anyone else where to search you.
2. Damage Control #1 Facebook
On Facebook, profile and cover photos are always visible to anyone who searches. Delete them from your Profile Pictures and Cover Photos albums if you don’t want them on public display.
3. Damage Control #2 LinkedIn
On LinkedIn go to the security settings and turn off the ‘Viewers of this profile also viewed’ function so that visitors don’t get to see which profiles – usually competitors – other visitors viewed.
4. Use LinkedIn’s Professional Portfolio
Showcase your expertise on your LinkedIn profile using the Professional Portfolio function to upload PDFs, documents and images, or sharing URLs to other professional content you may have online. You can share links to these assets when “networking” in groups or in your updates. Unfortunately your Professional Portfolio is only visible to those within LinkedIn. See tip 5.
Establish authority and demonstrate your expertise on other highly visible (to search engines) platforms such as SlideShare. This content can be shared through your social media. SlideShare is easy to use. Log in with your LinkedIn account and upload PDFs or PPTs, remembering to complete the description including keywords and your name so that you are well indexed by search engines.
6. Take it to the next level by blogging
Blogging software allows users to quickly add their own content to the web without having to go through a web developer. What that means is content is fresh and dynamic and Google likes that!
Create content that solves people’s problems and answers their questions, and search engines will bring prospects to you, not matter how niche. By blogging you also create quality content that highlights your expertise, and that you can share through your social media platforms. By writing, you are perceived as being an authority which not only adds to your brand but is usually a step towards being asked to guest blog or write articles on other sites, or in printed media.
Hosted blogging services:
- WordPress.com – https://en.wordpress.com/about/
- Blogger (owned by Google) – https://support.google.com/blogger/answer/1623800?hl=en
These are free and relatively easy to set up. The only downside is that the ‘wordpress’ or ‘blogspot’ names appear in your URL, but if you are giving people information they need, they are hardly likely to care.
WordPress.org provides the self-hosting platform which means that you host is under your own domain name. This website is an example of a WordPress-based site. You can also have WordPress blogs hosted as a microsite within corporate sites, which tend to be somewhat static.
LinkedIn long-form posts. Coming soon if you don’t already have this feature.
7. Turn up the volume
Give a wider audience access to your expertise via social media but be prepared to pay a couple of hundred dollars to promote posts to targeted audiences.
LinkedIn advertising: For extending your expertise we recommend promoting your updates. At the moment this is only available through a LinkedIn company page but I expect that it will be rolled out to personal accounts.
8. Take it to the next level with webinars via Hangouts on Air
Interact with your prospects, create content for sharing and provide Google something else to find. Hangouts on Air bring the benefits of face-to-face interaction with the convenience and reach of the internet. Click here to learn more.
The internet is fine and dandy but NOTHING beats direct human interaction which is why we attend networking events or stand up and do seminars. It is very effective but takes time. Google’s Hangouts on Air provides a compromise.
With Hangouts on Air:
- you can broadcast to as many people who have the link
- you can co-host with up to 10 people
- your audience can interact via chat
- While you are presenting Google’s YouTube is recording and at the end of your event, the video is uploaded to your YouTube – BUT not published until you hit the button
- On YouTube Google provides an easy to use editing tool so you can cut and add captions.
So the triple benefit here is:
- not only have you been able to broadcast to any number of guests
- you have created content that you can share on your social media platforms
- AND you have created another showcase of your expertise for Google to find.
If you would like to make the web work for you please talk to us about about about company and personal training or look out for our public workshops
You can also sign up to receive updates in your inbox, linking back to great content on our website.
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