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People around the globe are constantly on social media. This is not some new trend – it has been ongoing for well over 10 years now. Your little sister as well as your grandmother are likely on some social media of their choosing. This is probably no shock to you whatsoever as this is the new norm. However, in the grand scheme of things, this pattern of human behavior is far outside the long-standing norm when contrasted against that of the generations that came before us. For example, your great-great-grandfather did not look to the endless number of digital pages for help in creating a business and turning a profit. The primary reason for this is simply that the internet simply did not exist. But the secondary reason was just as pertinent – it was not needed.
Why exactly was this the case? For one, successful business ideas were passed on from father to son – the members of the younger generation only had to go to their elders for advice. On top of this, families were generally long standing enough to where they already had relationships in place before the younger people could even grow up. In summation, this means that once the younger people grew up, they had a network in place to make their professional life run smoothly. Chances are that your present life looks nothing like this, and you must find a way to combine the modern trends of social media with the traditional human condition. Amy Jo Martin, the Founder and CEO of Digital Royalty highlighted how to do so, “Social media is the ultimate equalizer. It gives a voice and a platform to anyone willing to engage.”
Without a personal and professional network, attempting to move up in the corporate world may only frustrate you. For many, utilizing social media to build their personal brand, which allows for this network, has been helpful. To help you follow in these footsteps, we have gathered the thoughts and opinions of people who have already accomplished this.
Update, Update, Update
How many social media pages have you visited where the information visible to you was in no way up to date? There are generally tell-tale signs of this. The most recent pictures are approaching half-a-decade old, the occupation listed is now a thing of the past, and the status updates are few and far between. Social media accounts that fall into this category are far less appealing to the outsider viewer. Which is why you must stay on top of this.
“Anyone who is inconsistent about updating their personal social media pages will quickly see how it affects their engagement levels,” said Michael Bell, CEO of Manukora. “Social media lacks that face to face element so if outsiders feel like they aren’t seeing a real person, they’re going to take their attention elsewhere.”
Thankfully, there is a simple solution to this – make updating a regular part of the time you spend on social media. Be it new images, changes in occupation, or even just new events that have taken place in your life, make these things known on your social media accounts. Your followers will take notice as will those who stumble across your account.
“Realistically, no one on the internet is telling the crystal clear, truthful, version of their lives”, said Adam Bém, Co-Founder and COO of Victoria VR. “Everyone spices it up a little bit. But, what you should take notice of is that they don’t stop updating their accounts. That’s how they keep the audience interested.”
Consistency is Key
The idea of continuing to engage is the crux of social media. Without doing so, it will be as if you are not present on any platform in the first place. But, this means much more than simply keeping your account updated. Not only do online users actively seek out updated accounts, they look for highly-specific as well as active accounts. The latter is what we want to focus on for the time being. Think of it like this – social media is the new cable. Consumers of both are very content to continue scrolling until they find something that scratches the itch so to speak. But, if you and your content are not present somewhere in that stream of content, it will be virtually impossible for you to gain any sort of ground. So take the time
“Let’s say you want to make a career out of social media or just for social media to make a difference in your professional life,” said Patrick Robinson, CEO and Founder of Paskho. “This can’t be a reality if you are not an active and regular participant in it. If you think anything else is going to cut it, that’s nothing more than wishful thinking.”
There is more than one way of going about this. That is the beauty of social media, actually – it can be whatever you make about it. Maybe creating videos regularly is not your thing but highly-detailed written posts are. It could be that you’re better at one-on-one interactions. Whatever the case, do that thing as often as you can without forcing it.
“The most well-received internet personalities are those who connect with their platform frequently,” said Rachel Reid, CEO of Subtl Beauty. “Your followers should not feel like it’s a treat for your name to appear on their timeline.”
Start Keeping a Schedule
“Only the highest tier of the highest tier of content creators and internet personas can get away with maintaining a random schedule of posting new content,” said Adelle Archer, CEO and Co-Founder of Eterneva. “If you’re on a schedule for new content releases or time for communication, your personal brand isn’t going to be going anywhere.”
On the surface, this sounds much harder than it actually is. The great news for you in this is that most major social media platforms have built in features to allow your schedule to flow seamlessly. You don’t have to be ready at a moment’s notice or plan around certain events if you incorporate this into your plan for building your personal social media brand.
“You would be hard pressed to find a social media site that doesn’t give you the ability to schedule out your postings,” said Bryan Alston, Chief Marketing Officer at Greater Than. “And you would be wise to take advantage of this so your accounts can appear active far more than you really are.”
Social Media is About More Than Just You
One of the most prevalent issues on social media is that, while it is intended for people to connect with each other, most people often get so caught up in their personal lives or pages that they struggle to see past any of this. In the long run, this can pose a real threat to the longevity of any social media page.
“If I’m being real with you, a lot of the people on social media are so introspective about their accounts that there’s nothing social about what they’re doing,” said Christy Pyrz, Chief Marketing Officer at Paradigm Peptides. “This is why random internet users take notice of accounts to interact with their followers. Assuming you’re in search of such a following, it might be time for you to do the same.”
This might seem counterintuitive. If you want to build a brand and popularity of your own, why would focusing on others be of any concern to you? Because if you don’t, you will not be able to build any form of a personal brand. Followers and people who actually engage with your content are the literal lifeblood of any social media page. Realizing your place in all this is what will push you above and beyond where you thought your social media could go.
“A viral nature, charm, internet buzzwords, and even advertising can only take you so far ,” said Jodi Neuhauser, CEO of Ovaterra. “Your social media brand depends on your communication with other accounts. Losing sight of this will only turn around and bite you.”
Learn From the Best
If someone was to ask you why professional competitors review footage of their wins and loses, could you flush out all the reasons why? Likely not, only because there are so many. But understanding a piece of this will help you grow your social media brand.
“Take a scroll through any platform of your choosing to try and find some of the biggest influencers on the platform,” said Susan K. Shaffer, President of Pneuma Nitric Oxide. “Outside of simply being celebrities or popular already, what is it that they do so well that keeps people coming back?”
Finding the answer to this question will take a bit of legwork and analysis. But, Rome was not built overnight and neither were the majority of personal social media brands out there. The best influencers have demonstrated tact and thoughtfulness which has elevated their brand to new heights. There is nothing stopping you from taking a page out of their book.
“No matter where you turn on the internet, somebody is probably already making content similar to what you’re setting out to do,” said Raina Kumra, Founder and CEO of Spicewell. “Don’t step on their toes as that will just cause drama. But, look at the details of what they do to make their accounts work and see if you can find your own way of doing that. Sometimes, a tried and true method is the best road forward.”
Social media is one of the more open-ended things anyone can partake in. It truly has the power to be whatever the users want it to be. This kind of power can bring massive change to your life if you choose to use it. But as seen above, it’s going to require a lot of you. That being said, don’t shrink back at the thought of this. Instead, consider the words of broadcast journalist Germany Kent who summarized the many capabilities of social media, “If you are on social media, and you are not learning, not laughing, not being inspired or not networking, then you are using it wrong.”
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