Recently I wrote about Personal Branding in a resume and today I’d like to tackle the broader topic of Brand Management.
Here are 5 pointers on this topic I would like to share with you.
1: Establish and maintain a high visibility online, in the press, and within the industry.
This advice is not only applicable for a person in creative positions it is applicable for all job seekers. Everyone should have a solid Linked-In profile since this is generally the first URL that shows up when people Google your name. Your Summary can be designed as a mini bio, sales brochure, or as a combination of both. Whether you’re employed ort unemployed will determine, in most cases, the image you want people to take away about you.
Blogging is another good way to get noticed. You can begin your own blog or submit content to established blogs or both. You can also start meaningful LinkedIn group discussions and contribute meaningful responses to other discussion to establish how well you know your business and how much of a SME you are compared to the other responders. It’s easy to pick out the people who are offering good advice from those going through the motions just to get name recognition.
Also, as I have found out, if you contribute useful content and have a writing style that people enjoy people will contact you requesting permission to reprint your material, asking you to write for them and seeking permission to quote you in newspaper articles, websites and other media outlets. I also suggest you check out www.helpareporter.com for ways to get better known in the media world.
2: Be seen and not just read
There is more than meets the eye to the adage “being in the right place at the right time.” As a job seeker it is important for you to be out front and project a public image of being seen in the right circles, speaking to the right people. Too many people today consider networking as a strictly online or telephone based process. This is so far from the truth; networking has always been and will continue to be a pounding the flesh art.
So incorporate time to be in a position to meet and greet important people as often as possible. Networking events are not the answer. You may need to make an investment and be at the right trade shows, lectures, workshops or CPE classes and the like. There is a cost but there is also a ROI well worth the investment. The key though is not to just shake a hand and say hello/my name is John Doe and I am a widget maker extraordinaire/goodbye. Engage people in a conversation, let them know how you can help them and get their contact information; and important is to follow up on it within one week.
3: You’re not a business person unless you have a business card
Following up on the advice above, when you ask someone for their business card you should reciprocate by giving them your card as well. Some of you may have your company business card, and this will suffice. Or you may want to go one step further, especially if you do not have a company business card, and print up an eye catching business card to use strictly for networking purposes. There are so many companies around like Vistasprint that getting attractive business cards designed and printed at a reasonable cost is as easy as it gets.
4: Give us each day your daily message
This is not as easy as it sounds or as hard as people make it out to be. Twitter can elevate your personal brand and get you wide spread name recognition very quickly with no financial cost. However it takes time and effort to find the right people to follow and request that they reciprocate and follow and re-tweet you. Once this is accomplished the hard part is coming up with something fresh, relevant and eye catching to tweet every day and being disciplined enough keep up the pace on an ongoing basis.
5. Take people’s pulse
You have an opinion on everything. You know what you think about a current business topic, current events, and a company you worked for or want to work at, and about a peer, a recruiter, vendor or product. The list is endless. But the real key to being known and respected is to make sure your opinion is shared by like minded people, and especially by the people you want to meet and impress. So what I suggest is to do what I do. Make a list of the fifty people you trust, respect and admire the most for their wisdom, candor and SME and talk to them regularly to see if they agree, disagree or can add value to what you hold as the truth. You can also do this by creating online, email and blog polls and, sending them to a representative audience interpreting the feedback you receive.
As always I am happy to critique U.S. resumes, LinkedIn pages and job search action plans at no cost. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org