In today’s social media driven world, your profile is your business card. It’s your digital imprint. Just as you would hustle to get your brand’s name known in any other channel, you must do the same for your social media profile. Regardless of the business you are in, optimizing your profile and gaining valuable followers, likes and engagement translates to real opportunities.
Why Your Social Profiles Are Your Identity
If you go back to the roots of social media, it was all about communication and connecting with those you knew and didn’t know. Well, that has certainly evolved. It’s now one of the most important marketing channels for any brand. Your profile has to reflect this. Whether it’s your personal profile or your brand’s, it must be genuine.
Think of the most loved profiles in the social world. Brands like Coca-Cola and McDonald’s are iconic. They know who they are and they leverage that on social media, choosing to understand their social profiles as an extension of this, not something separate from it. On a personal brand level, Selena Gomez had the most popular Instagram account for 2017. Why does her profile resonate with so many? What makes her account stand out is that it’s not a well-curated commercial for her. Instead, she comes off as genuine and normal, the kind of girl that makes mistakes and comes out stronger from them. That’s her identity.
To position your profile to be your identity, you need neither be a billion-dollar brand or a famous pop star. Instead, stay true to your roots. If your brand doesn’t really have strong roots, then social media can help you cultivate them.
Right now, you need to identify your brand ‘personality’ – what you stand for, purpose, character nuances as an organization or personal brand (cutting-edge and innovative, stylish and elegant, down-to-earth and upfront) – and you need to be consistent with this across all profiles and marketing tactics.
Enhancing Your Profile as Your Digital Identity
Now that you understand how your profiles and identity must be integrated, here are some ways you can enhance your profiles to align with this strategy.
Take a fresh look at your bio. Is it a compelling story? It should be your value proposition, communicating what is truly unique about your brand. While being clever and interesting is awesome, you should also think about some keywords that relate to how others might find you. Getting found in searches is a great way to get more connections.
Check your branding and images. This includes logos, colors and any other visual elements. Each platform has its own nuances but most allow for header and profile pictures. Take advantage of these and use branding where appropriate. Definitely don’t leave them blank! Not sure how to create professional looking profile images. Try Canva. It has templates that are sized correctly, and you don’t need any design skills to use this easy app.
Share content that isn’t just about you and your brand. In fact, at least 25 percent of your posts should be third party articles. For this to make sense for your brand, this content should align with your identity and support what matters to you and your brand. It should be educational and interesting. Start with sites you like and frequent. Add new sources by looking at what is trending in your industry. An easy way to find great content is to set up Google alerts for certain keywords or topics.
Sponsor a post. Put a few dollars toward boosting a post and targeting those who would be most interested. It’s super easy and cheap to sponsor posts, and you could gain many more followers and more from a tiny investment. Remember to go back to your core identity when deciding what type of post to sponsor.
Social media will continue to evolve, as all things in life do. If you want social media to work for you then you have to take the time to market it like it’s a critical part of your brand and the heart of your digital identify.