Social Media Branding for Career Advancement
Social media is a powerful tool for building a brand. If you booked your day solid with networking events and meetings, you could never compete with the number of people you could reach online instead. Social media should never replace in-person interactions, but it is an incredible tool to increase your network’s familiarity with who you are and what you bring to the table.
Many people think that the number of followers you have defines your success. But when it comes to growing your career, you should be focusing on attracting the right followers. Getting a lot of followers fast is fairly easy, hello memes and bikini pics, but if this isn’t the brand you are looking to monetize, there is still hope. If you want to grow your career, skip the cheap thrills and focus on your niche. I post about applied political science, so trust me when I say, that is a slower process than the other, more gratuitous path. The major positive side is that most of us don’t need to reach hundreds of thousands of people to gain the clients and career advancement opportunities to “make it”. Think of your online presence as a daily reminder to your network that you are still plugging away and hustling.
Additionally, stay away from basing your perception of your success on social media by likes, comments, and views. How your posts develop your brand for your professional network in real life is much more important than overall engagement. Your target audience might not be all that active on social media, but that does not mean they aren’t seeing what you’re posting. The true test will be when you are out at networking events and meeting with people in your industry and people already know of you and your expertise. Growing your career is much like sales, it takes quite a few points of contact before someone views and respects you as an expert.
When deciding what to post, have a clear vision of your end goal when creating your content. What are the types of clients or opportunities you are looking for? What types of job opportunities are you wanting to position yourself for in the future? Thinking about your dream job as well as the most immediate steps in your career can be helpful. For myself, my immediate career pursuits are working on political campaigns and in consulting. For my big goals that I’m building towards – RNC Chairwoman, a FOX News Political Correspondent, and in my retirement years, a college Political Science professor. So, what I’m posting now, helps me both today and far in the future.
Lastly, it’s ok to have a personality on social media. You don’t have to be all business all the time, but do stay on brand. Consider your social media like a tv channel, not a constant infomercial. There’s some commercials if you will. These are posts where you directly ask for business. There’s some educational content. These are posts that add value to your readers. Think of this like giving a bit of your skillset and services away for free. And lastly, some entertainment. I like to find funny memes that are relatable to people in my industry to pepper in, especially on stories. You can also make reel trends applicable to your personal brand. Putting out a variety of content will make sure you grow and keep your target audience. If your industry is saturated, showing your personality will be what sets you apart. People like to work with people they like. So have fun showing what makes you unique!