Next in our series of blog posts from Group Gordon’s summer interns, Kasey Katz applies the lessons she’s learned in corporate PR to building a personal brand. 7.6.15
How much time does it take you to get ready for work? What about for a meeting? An interview? A date?
When it comes to making a good impression in person, people tend to take care of their physical appearance and behavior. But, what people often disregard is the amount of care that needs to be taken with their online appearance.
Here at Group Gordon, we spend our days focusing on how our clients are perceived in the public eye – both on and offline. In learning the ropes of public relations, I realized that our approach to shaping, forming, and sustaining our clients’ images could be applied to people’s personal profiles, as well. Just as we have strategic communications plans for our clients, here’s one for your personal online image.
How much time do you take creating a Facebook profile, posting an Instagram, or sending a tweet? Your digital impression is just as important as the impression you make in the room with your potential employer, prospective client, or blind date. Many social media channels are public and can reach people all over the world, including those you don’t know. Not only that, but these posts, tweets, and photos remain accessible forever.
It is crucial to be strategic in your digital conduct to ensure you portray yourself in a positive light. Your online presence should be fresh and accurate in order to give clients, colleagues, friends, and new acquaintances insight into who you are. Taking the time to assess and manage your personal brand gives you power and control; make sure you’re only making the smartest choices when building your digital profile.
Before you post anything on the Internet, keep the following tips—inspired by how we help our clients craft their images—in mind to ensure that the digital you doesn’t give people the wrong impression of the real you:
You never know who is going to see what you post. Think about it: one of your viewers could be your new or prospective boss or even your mother-in-law! Before you click “post,” think about what those pictures say about you. Is it really something you’d want any member of the public to see?
It’s always smart to stick with appropriate language on social media. For example, to keep things professional and classy, keep the cussing to a minimum. That doesn’t mean that posting has to be especially formal. Feel free to spice up some post with some fun Emojis. And of course, make sure you understand the online lingo you’re using before you post. Think of it like this: if you wouldn’t want to be quoted in the New York Times saying it, don’t post it.”
3. Personal Details
We encourage clients to keep their LinkedIn, online bio, and company website as up-to-date as possible. Individuals should do the same. Make sure your interests, likes, hobbies, education, and things you follow are up-to-date with your life today. The “about” or “info” sections of social media pages often give the most detailed view of who a person is. Make sure the information is correct, current, and reflects the persona you want to project to the world – both cyber and real!
Check the privacy settings on your social media pages – especially as social media platforms update and change their privacy guidelines. Make sure only the people you want to see your personal life have access to it!
Following these tips will help you create a cyber-self that enhances, instead of hurts, your personal brand. So while your posts may not show up in The New York Times or Page Six, your toughest critics – your friends, colleagues, clients, and relatives – will see them on their newsfeeds! So next time you post, take a second to make sure you’re leaving the right impression, digitally and in real life.