Social media is the Internet age’s go-to means of networking and getting your name out there to the public. But while it provides people with lots of new ways to introduce themselves to the world, it also increases your chances of making a misstep.
That’s why if you’re going to use a social media profile or a bio to make people aware of who you are, you need to do it right. With that in mind, here are some ideas for getting across the message of how awesome you are.
Social media has the power to increase a professional’s visibility, provided there’s a good profile or bio in place.
Blow Your Horn In Your Bio, But Don’t Be A Blowhard
No one likes a show-off, but on the other hand, if you don’t give people some proof as to why you’re worth the time and should be followed/contacted/hired, then they simply won’t bother. Make sure that your bio lists your accomplishments, anything you’ve published or created, and where your work can be found. Follow the pattern of a resume in that you should list your current job as well as past experience. For a good idea on how to pull this off, look at executive Jim Decker’s profile. After all, if you’re trying to come across as someone who’s been around and knows what they’re talking about, then you better be ready to back that up.
You also should avoid coming across as one-dimensional. Look at the good example of executive Bob Bratt. His Pinterest page shows not only a work-related board but also one for his former school, his hometown, and his love of sports. One could argue that three out of four of those boards have nothing to do with his professional life, but those boards give people a better idea of the kind of person he is, something which comes into play when deciding whether to strike up a partnership or collaboration with. Make sure you include some interests and other fascinating tidbits, though these should be handled as peripheral, supplemental things, not as the main focus of your profile.
Know Your Audience
It’s hard to be all things to all people, so you have to reach a decision as to who you’re trying to impress the most. Take your profile picture, for instance. If you’re trying to project the image of the knowledgeable, experienced professional, then you probably don’t want to have a picture of you holding a cat while wearing a propeller beanie. On the other hand, if you’re angling towards building contacts in the world of creativity, then a button-down, non-smiling, super-serious image may be the wrong approach.
When it comes to a profile or bio, it’s best to walk a tightrope between competent professional and fun, interesting human being. It can be a challenge and there’s bound to be some missteps, but it can be done.
Be Approachable And Be Everywhere
Finally, make sure that your profile and bio include the means of contacting you. After all, if you’ve impressed someone to the point that they want to get in touch, it better be an easy undertaking! Make sure you include such basics as an email address, mobile phone number, link to your site or personal blog, or some other manner of easy contact. You’d be surprised how often people forget that sort of thing.
Also, scatter that profile around to a number of social media sites. Create accounts on Facebook, LinkedIn, Google Plus, Twitter, Pinterest, to name a few. The Internet’s a big place, and you really want to get your name out there.
Social media offers the ambitious professional or amateur an unlimited field of opportunity to turn themselves into a viable brand. Put together a good bio, a good profile, and you’ll be on your way. If you already have some social media profiles but you think they may need some tweaking, then check out “Give Your Social Media Profiles A Makeover”.