Social media has changed the way we communicate today. It’s in our best interest to be informed about all of the new possibilities to manage our online reputation. The lines between professional and personal are blurring online and many times, we refer to our online presence as our “Personal Brand.” Your Personal Brand can be both the personal and professional “YOU.”
Here are five benefits of using social media:
1. Build relationships.
Social media is not just about brands connecting with their customers. In fact, at its root, social media is about connecting people to people. If you’ve attended a Social Shift training session I’ve led, chances are you’ve heard that almost every single friend I have in San Francisco, I met through social media.
From a professional perspective, you can grow your professional network online tremendously by connecting with colleagues, mentors, role models and other professionals. If you nurture those relationships, you have a whole new network to tap when you’re looking for opportunities or professional guidance.
2. Share your expertise.
Social media gives you an opportunity to talk about what you know and what you want to be known for. Sharing your expertise will attract potential professional and personal connections. Learn how to present your professional experience, achievements and results and you will get more and more opportunities to connect with like-minded people.
If you share content on topics that you know much about, you can begin to build credibility. This doesn’t only go for your online presence. If you live your personal brand and your actions reflect your online presence, it validates that you can be trusted and those relationships you are building will be that much more authentic and valuable.
3. Increase your visibility.
If you spend time honing in on your expertise, consistently managing your social channels, then you have the potential to greatly increase your visibility and even become a thought-leader in your space. Good content gets shared, so if you are consistently posting quality content, the more people who share it, the more people see it.
It’s not just about pushing content, however. You also need to be engaging with other people’s content. Following people and interacting with them on social media will work to build relationships (we keep coming back to this one!) and will help to get your name out there for people to turn to.
4. Educate yourself.
There is a lot of noise on the Internet. Social media allows you to hone in on what you really care about and what you really want to read. You can create lists that curate content from your favorite people, thought leaders in the space, or media outlets. You can easily learn about current events and things taking place near you.
5. Connect anytime
I know to some of you this may sound like a disadvantage. But, the advantage of being able to communicate and connect with anyone instantly outweighs the potential negative.
Social media can help you connect before, during and after networking events, a conference or a meeting. People can get to know you prior to meeting you and be better equipped to talk in person. I know I’ve met people in person for the first time after following them online for a while and we felt like long lost friends!
Social media is a land of new opportunity. There are countless personal and professional benefits of using social media. With a little love and care, we can start to build and shape our personal brands into an epicenter of opportunity.