Marketing Bootcamp

Personal Branding Doesn't Mean Just Fixing Your LinkedIn Presence

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Now everyone is free to muse on professional matters through LinkedIn’s blogging platform. Make sure that your personal branding efforts shine and are memorable. Don't limit yourself to just one platform.

Too many CEOs and executives (and their PR handlers) think that if they have a great LinkedIn profile and are active on the site, their job of marketing themselves is done.

That's wrong. Businesspeople can promote themselves in smart, creative ways beyond LinkedIn, both online and in person.

Here are just a few low-effort marketing strategies that professionals can employ to maximize the positive effect on their personal brand -- for their career and company:

Related: 4 Basics for Building (or Repairing) Your Personal Brand

1. Optimize speaking engagements.

If you land a speaking engagement at a conference, make the most of it. Find out if the event is being filmed, ask for the footage and use it to create a show reel -- to use for pitching more speaking gigs.

Offer to work with the event's organizers on articles or interviews in advance that will increase your reach. Note the event's hashtag and use it to engage with people on social media. Inquire whether if any members of the press will be attending and contact them to offer them a briefing about your company.

You might be scheduled for only a 30-minute talk or panel, but you have an opportunity to squeeze way more of a return on the investment of yourtime onstage. Be thoughtful about optimizing and amplifying your presence before, during and after the show.

Related: The Rules of Engagement: 5 Ways to Connect on Social Media

2. Divide up your social media time.

My strategy for online personal branding is to use a 60/40 rule. Sixty percent of my social-media updates are professional and 40 percent are personal in some way. This ensures my followers and potential connections get to know a little about me beyond just my work-related thoughts and opinions.

Sharing my love of cricket and real ale and regularly talking about the trials and tribulations of being a parent to two young daughters adds a bit of color. These details might serve as positive conversation starters when I meet someone in person. 

Find something natural from your downtime to talk about or share on social media. Many people worry that their followers might not want to hear personal details, but the lines between work and play have blurred over the last 10 years, thanks to digital media, and you’ll be completing the circle of personal branding by giving your posts a human touch.

3. Take an interest in others.

Working on your personal brand doesn’t mean you have to talk about yourself 24/7. Taking an interest in and heeding the comments of others will endear them to you and you’ll probably learn a few things that will help your professional development as well. Simply having empathy with peers who are facing professional problems will have a positive effect on your brand. Plus it just feels good to help people who are in a bind.

Make a conscious effort to spend time in asking your peers about their work roles, what drives them, where they’ve had the most success and how they behave in adverse situations. No one knows everything, so allocating your time to fill gaps in knowledge can help your company and your personal brand.  

Related: 5 Ways to Build Your Brand in Short Chunks of Time