People are often judged by first impressions – which used to mean a handshake or greeting, but in today’s world it’s usually a post, tweet or like. Avoid missing out on future business opportunities by following our 5 tips for developing a strong professional online presence.
Develop a Plan:
Just like business planning, you need to have a clear content plan to accurately tell your professional story. Think of yourself as a brand, then think about how you want that brand to be represented.
Is it for your professional experience? Your position as a thought leader in your industry? A visionary in your field? Whatever your “you” is, be sure it aligns with the content you publish online to ensure that what you are posting supports your brand.
Aim to post at least 1-2 times a day, planning out what you want to post based on a general content calendar. For example, Mondays are motivational quotes, Tuesday tips, Wednesdays are for videos, Thursdays and Fridays are free for lifestyle posts, like your family, a non-profit, volunteerism, or hobbies.
If you plan it out it won’t seem as daunting. Also, reposting content that supports your brand is a smart and time effective way to improve your social presence.
Dust Off Your LinkedIn Profile:
LinkedIn is a great tool because it allows you to build an online portfolio and share your accomplishments, but compared to other social platforms it isn’t the most fun to use.
However, just because you can’t add a cool theme or post that picture of your dog lucky you love so much – doesn’t mean LinkedIn can’t further your brand.
Users make the mistake of having a LinkedIn profile that exists only as an online resume that they update every few years when job hunting. WRONG! You should be utilizing the platform to connect with your peers, garner prospects and reach out to thought leaders in your industry.
Capitalize on Your Opinions:
You only need to know 10% more on subject than the average person to be perceived as an expert. How do experts get their ideas out there? They blog!
I am sure you have something to say when it comes to the best practices or tips for working effectively in your industry. Why not share the knowledge?
By creating in-depth blog posts about things you’ve experienced in your field or even things that you’ve experienced in life as a result of your career, like decorating your first apartment or budgeting for the holidays, you should share your experiences and watch your audience grow!
Professionals tend to shy away from blogging out of fear of being judged for standing on a soap box, however people do business with people, and blogs will give readers more of an insight into what sets your brand apart.
Manage Your Online Reputation:
Have a less than flattering picture that your sorority sister posted of you on Facebook after winter formal? It’s pretty safe to say that you wouldn’t want clients or potential employees to see that side of you, am I right?
Be careful about what you post because your online presence will live forever. Also, set your privacy settings to where you have to approve when other people tag you.
Monitor Your Image:
Sign up for Google alerts so that you can be informed each time a new mention of you is made online. You can use these alerts to do damage control if anything negative is said about you and you can share all the positive things said about you.
Make sure to blog regularly, post frequently, and keep your LinkedIn up to date to enhance engagement and maintain your relevance.
Try these tips to start building your online reputation today!
Ashley Pina, Marketing, The TNS Group