If you are trying to build a positive reputation for your personal brand, there’s no better place to start than on social media. Social media profiles allow you to put yourself in front of the world and your target audience in whatever way you choose. However, it’s important to make sure that the persona you go with is helpful to your brand. The following tips can help you ensure that you make the right choices on social media so your brand benefits rather than suffers.
Use One Profile Picture Across Platforms
One of the fastest and simplest ways you can make your social media appear more professional is to use the same picture across all platforms. Depending on your industry and how you want to appear to others online, you may want to follow common guidelines for LinkedIn profile pictures and use them for all of your accounts, such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Audit Your Online Network
While you should never participate in follow/unfollow schemes, taking a look at who you are following and who is following you from time to time can be a good way to clean up your social media accounts. If you have followers who are purely spambots, it is a good idea to unfollow them at the least and block them if you feel that they could be a threat to your security online. You may also want to separate yourself from users with extremely offensive or controversial accounts if you want to appear as professional as possible.
Create a Professional Cover Photo
While it may not seem as important as your profile picture, having a clean, professional cover photo can work wonders for how your audience views you on social media. Consider using a service like Canva to create a stylized graphic with your name. You can even find a visually appealing, free-to-use stock photo online that aligns with your industry. Just like with your profile photo, you should use the same cover photo across social media platforms.
Consider Pinterest as a Social Media Marketing Tool
A lot of professionals don’t consider Pinterest as a tool that can help them build their personal brands online, but there are a lot of ways that you can use a Pinterest profile to promote yourself in a polished and unique way. Writers can share links to their best articles on a designated board, while graphic designers can create a portfolio board with some of their best art. There are many different possibilities, and Pinterest’s business features make them easier to implement, especially for those in a creative field.
Mind Your Online Content
Many professionals are still uncertain when it comes to the type of content they need to focus on to build their personal brands online. You want to shy away from anything controversial, offensive, or overly personal unless your persona demands you to share something less traditionally professional. If you have had trouble with grammar in the past, consider using a proofreading tool like Grammarly or your smartphone’s built-in autocorrect features to help you avoid spelling errors and other grammar mistakes.
Review Old Social Media Content
Once you’ve figured out what type of content will help you build your brand on social media, review the content you’ve already posted. If there are questionable posts from your past, delete them or privatize them, depending on what platform you are using. This goes for text content, pictures, and anything else you might have publicly viewable.
If you want to appear serious about your brand, it’s important to be consistent with your content. Don’t post things that go against how you want to present yourself to the world. You also don’t want to go weeks or months at a time without posting anything. Stay active, interact with others, and share interesting articles that you find online with your followers to have the best results and build your following.
While it takes more than a few social media tweaks to successfully build your brand, starting with the tips above can help you appear more competent and trustworthy in a matter of minutes. From there, you can gauge how your target audience is responding and whether you are getting job offers or interest from potential clients. If you aren’t seeing the results you want, you can implement different elements on your social profiles until you hit a sweet spot that works for you and your brand.