Building your professional brand

Recently, I provided some guidance on how to create a professional brand. Since many websites provide info on what sites, platforms and social technologies to use, I focused more on the self — and what the individual should think about. Here’s some of what I shared:

I. Starter questions:

  • “How do you want people to think about you?”
  • “Are you willing to make the investment? – put in time everyday?”
  • “Can you get folks to help you?”
  • “Are you going to worry about ‘getting it right?”
  • “What do you want? What do you have to say?”

(yes, these were inspired by my high school basketball coach)

II.  Is there a good foundation to build upon:

  • Have you identified other professionals in your field to connect with
  • Have you identified people in other fields
  • Have you identified people in unrelated fields on social networks.
  • Have you connected with old friends and business colleagues.
  • Do you make mental notes about things you discovered when meeting new people
  • Do you make mental notes about what you read or learned… or heard
  • Learn about competitors, thought leaders, etc. who might be of value

III. Pick your voice:

  • Twitter, blogs, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Slideshare or something else

IV:  Some guiding principles:

  • Be consistent in messaging, stories, etc.
  • Know your elevator speech – keep it simple…use the same words consistently
  • Know what words you want to be associated with
  • Network with online journalists, analysts
  • Be your own spokesperson– Tell people to read your Tweets or blog because……
  • Update  consistently your LinkedIn, Facebook, etc. pages in thoughtful manner…
  • Share you presentations beyond Adobe’s sites §Don’t always agree – show your own expertise and knowledge
  • Be a free source of information…..
  • Differentiate yourself from others

V.  Some tactics:

  • Ask your friends, colleques to retweet you
  • Include your Twitter, Blog, etc. addresses in your signature
  • Remind people at conferences to follow you
  • Check your business cards – is your url on it?
  • Create a list of influencers and comment on their posts/writing AND link to them
  • Ask influencers for their opinion – reach out to them –
  • Engage with people who send direct messages
  • Tell stories §Pitch analysts and bloggers on their own terms – PR folks tend to pick up the phone or email–
  • Create your own event —- and be very visible in front of your audience

VI. How to get started:

  • Introduce how customers use products
  • Answer customer questions (ask the Call Center for examples)
  • Share info about the industry
  • Provide a directed experience around product
  • Point to “featured” content from Adobe evangelists, videos and photo
  • Create ‘cool’ shareable assets – jump start the viral stuff

VII.  Final note: You can’t go it alone…. You need your network to help you

Hope this helps…

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