I have been on an online personal branding journey since 2009 and I have to say it has been a challenge. Not just from a time committment perspective, but a content perspective as well. For those of you who are just starting out on your journey, I thought I would offer a few words of advice and encouragement:
Here’s the advice part:
- Stay focused–decide who you are today and who you will be in the future and stick with it. I am a marketer and that’s what I portray in everything I do online.
- Read–content is king when it comes to social media overall and your brand itself. I find the best way to provide remarkable content is to read other people’s blogs and books. It really helps with the writer’s block!
- Add valuable content–let’s face it, we are all really, really busy. You need to make sure you are providing content that is going to help/enlighten your readers/viewers. You have to give them a reason to seek you out on a consistent basis. My most viewed blog was 5 Easy Steps to Failing at Personal Branding. While the title is a little tongue in cheek, it really does provide a lot of great content.
- Be consistent–don’t go dark, and don’t quit. No one likes a quitter, especially your groupies.
- Measure your progress–if you have online branding goals and measure to those goals you will stay focused and most importantly not quit. My goal metrics are:
- Productivity: Number of blogs—1 to2 per week, tweet daily—at least 5 tweets per day, and move to a 2-to-1 ratio on Twitter (followers to following).
- Engagement: writing comments on other people’s blog posts once a week and retweeting important/remarkable people’s blogs once a week (both of these without coming across as a stalker).
- Reach: increase the number of Twitter followers with 5,000+ followers.
- Klout: increase my Klout score–my current score is 45, I would like to move it up 50 points.
- Expert status: Have my name associated with the term direct marketing/marketing/ market research in Reno, NV
Ok, enough of the advice, here is the encouragement part. All of us that are building our online brand know that it takes a long time and it is a very thankless job. Here’s how I look at it. There are very few things in life that I have “complete” control over–online branding is one of them (save for cyber bullies of course…but even that can be dealt with). Why not put your time and money resources into something that can have a direct benefit to your life…be it from the personal or professional side (or even both!)?
When are you going to clean up your online brand and how are you going to keep yourself motivated to remain vigilant?