With so many communication streams, it can feel like it’s increasingly difficult to get anyone’s attention, and the traditional methods of calling and sending emails simply aren’t as effective as they once were. And, because we have so much more access to information through our social networks and the web, it can feel like your job is more difficult than it’s ever been. But the truth is, if you put all those resources to work for you, it can be easier to build a pipeline of future opportunities you can trust.
Today, the key is to act like a marketer.
The most successful professionals invest in their personal and company brands and actively engage with through branded content and influential communication, keeping their goals top of mind when it’s time to switch jobs. As a result, they’re able to capitalize on new opportunities and deepen existing relationships – and steadily grow their businesses.
What is a brand and why is it important to have one?
Your brand is the sum of all the experiences others have with you. It’s built from many things: your track record, your relationships, and your approach. It includes your industry, company, and role knowledge. The stronger your brand is, the easier it is for clients and candidates to say “YES!”
Create a personal brand
It all starts with your LinkedIn profile. Viewing member profiles is the #1 activity on LinkedIn, so it’s likely that your profile may be the first place others go to research information on you and your background. Your profile offers them a snapshot of who you are and insight into how you can be of service. So it’s important to showcase your professional knowledge, capabilities, and achievements.
Here are some tips to separate yourself from the pack:
Enhance your profile
- Engaging, friendly professional photo: Profiles with a photo are 21x more likely to be viewed.*
- Descriptive headline: Your headline appears in search results, so make sure it’s clear. You can go beyond your title or role. What would stand out to a potential client?
- Essential links: Include links to your firm’s website, LinkedIn Company Page, and anywhere else a client can go to learn more.
- Killer summary: Overinvest in your summary. Use the first person. Give clients insight into your experience, success, and why they would want to work with you.
Include contact information
Add a handle, such as one for Skype or Google Hangouts. These are an easy way to communicate and send quick notes, rather than sending emails they may never see. And, if you add your professional Twitter handle to your profile, you can share LinkedIn updates on Twitter as well.
Add rich media
Showcase your achievements and your company’s capabilities. Upload links to videos about your culture, articles about your accomplishments, presentations you’ve put together, blog posts, and more. Consider recording a short video introducing yourself: who you are, who your audience is, and what industry trends might be affecting the public.
Ask for recommendations from your peers, managers, and coworkers. This helps build your credibility and gives visitors a sense of what it’s like to work with you. Think about it: If a VP-level client gives you a recommendation, other VPs will see that you’re a recommended source and it could very well increase your chance of winning.