Your Professional & Personal Networks: Advice from a twenty-something

Companies and professionals are in constant demand of our attentions and input, leaving us (the consumer) with little time to appreciate mediocre content. We know from my last post that businesses need to cultivate their internet presence and the same goes for individuals.  Heck, I hear my digital marketing professor preachin’ about the need for students to increase our digital visibility in order to gain the attention of prospective employers.  So how do we build our personal and professional networks? Great question, and thank goodness I am here to alleviate your worries, and help guide you in the direction of smart social media.

First, I am going to shed some light on how each member of a business can shine without overshadowing the company.  The best way for business individuals to enhance and hone in their network is to create a LinkedIn profile.  Check out my page here.  LinkedIn has 200 million users worldwide which is great for business people, and the average household income of one of these users is $110,000, which is great for businesses themselves (LinkedIn for Marketers: a deep dive with the “LinkedIn Queen” Eve Mayer).  That is a large reach and you might be nervous because your current profile is a bit of a diamond in the rough.

Okay, so you’ve copied and pasted your basic resume facts and your best friend and brother-in-law have endorsed your skills in Microsoft Word… You’re done, right?  Sorry, but that just isn’t good enough.  Not for you or your employer.  But why should employers even be interested in their employees amping up their personal profiles?  If you are one of those people that believes that LinkedIn is your own personal outbound marketing platform, you aren’t entirely wrong, but you are also failing to seize a great opportunity.  If your LinkedIn profile gives you the opportunity to make personal connections that lead to achievement of career objectives, why can’t it do the same for businesses?  Well it can, says Eve Mayer “LinkedIn Queen”.

Building your social presence in these two simple ways can create a lasting impact for you and your employer, so really, it’s a win-win.

  1. Curate and create content.  You need to do it, even if you don’t want to- both professionally and personally.  I know it’s hard and sometimes it can be difficult to find inspiration, we all have busy lives and no one expects you to be a super human (unless you are Blake Lively or Beyonce).  That is where the combination of created and curated content comes in.  Created content comes directly from you or the business and demonstrates thought leadership and offers unique viewpoints.  Curated content is a great supplement for your own created content, according to the article Generating and Sharing Content Effectively from Hootsuite University.  Curation helps you create relationships in the industry and make connections that have the potential to mutually benefit.  Because this content is not coming directly from you it takes a considerably less amount and resources.  This is also great for allocating your time, and by now, your slacker ways have you looking for ways to make your life just a little bit easier.  I’m going to let you, my faithful blog readers, in on a little secret: this content, both curated and created on your personal and business’ social platform, gives a historical context of your involvement in an industry.  Hello future online thought and business authorities 
  2. Grow your online community.  Back in the day, you might of found your niche based on where like-minded kids hang out on the playground.  Some like dodgeball, others the swings, and the more adventurous kids even chase around the boys, scaring them with threats of cooties.  Nowadays, we have the internet and therefore like-minded business people have virtual playgrounds.  Figure out what it is you, or your business is trying to achieve and look for these communities and become an active member.  Do a lot of observing first, this will help you to determine if this activity will have a mutual benefit.  Next, engage in a conversation without trying to benefit yourself.  Hootsuite in Growing your Online Community, says participating in an online and offline community before you start your own aids in the perception of your business.  This way, your community doesn’t seem self serving and can spring up more naturally.  Just like friends are in elementary school, the power is not always in numbers and choosing the right group is crucial.  The best communities are made up of the most loyal and trusted friends.  Plus, those are the people that are going to love and share in your mutual weirdness (yes that can be an actual benefit to businesses). 

Now that you’ve established your community and I’ve got you rethinking social media as a professional and personal platform for leveraging content (good content) for the purpose of amplifying your business… What’s next?  Here comes the shameless plug for Hootsuite.  For those of you who don’t know, Hootsuite is a dashboard that allows you to see and employ all of your social platforms in one place.  Their mission is to provide a streamlined process for content and optimization, when it comes to everything social media.  They help businesses listen and engage their audiences, and provide collaboration tools for teams, all while providing the upmost security.  In their article 10 Ways to Improve Audience Engagement on Twitter: A Hootsuite Guide for Small to Medium, the processes for optimization are outlined.  Hootsuite does everything possible to make social media easy for businesses.  From built in analytics tools that provide real data about ROI, to collaboration platforms for team members, Hootsuite has got you covered.  They allow you to do a better job, with less work.  This not only helps you grow as a business, but also, you get to show your followers a little extra love.

Again, it’s a win-win.

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One thought on “Your Professional & Personal Networks: Advice from a twenty-something

  1. Pingback: Dating for Dummies (And Landing Pages Too) | Hannah Ricker

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