How to build your personal brand online — without looking like a jerk

Self-promotion can be a bit uncomfortable for some (including myself), while others seem to have no problem talking about their latest and greatest accomplishments.

The key to building out your brand online is value. Much like your co-workers don’t really care about the pictures of your toes in the sand while you’re sipping margaritas on a Caribbean island and they’re stuck in the office working, people online aren’t there to learn about you, specifically. Instead, they’re more focused on the value you deliver to them while they’re online.

Here are a few tips that will help you build your personal brand without being a braggart.

  1. Be relevant. There’s a lot of noise on social media. When your followers are taking a free moment to scan their feeds, give them something relevant and engaging. If you’re live tweeting from a tradeshow you’re attending that isn’t relevant to your followers, you’ll likely lose them. Share information and (sometimes) your opinion on topics that are interesting to your audience. Don’t know what’s relevant to them? Simply ask.
  1. Create new content. You’ve heard the saying “content is king” and maybe it is. It’s definitely important in elevating your brand online. Pick an area that you’re knowledgeable in and create content around that subject. By creating new and relevant content, you’ll position yourself as a thought leader on that topic. One easy way to start is to take advantage of LinkedIn’s publishing platform.
  1. Share your social links. Links to your social profiles are the new business card. To help build your online presence, include links to your LinkedIn profile and Twitter handle in your email signature, on the slides of presentations you deliver, and in content you’re creating online. The people who show up to follow you are likely interested in what you have to share.
  1. Use hashtags wisely. Are you one of those people who likes to #hashtag #like #everything? You need to #stop. Not only is that annoying to your followers, but it goes back to No. 1; its not relevant to them. If you are using hashtags for the sake of being cool and no one else is participating, then you’re having a conversation by yourself. Who wants to do that?

Have more tips to share? We’d love to hear them! Connect with us on Twitter @ShareFile.

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