10 Tips to Manage Your Personal Brand Online


Manage Your Personal Brand Online

Your guide to creating a memorable and authentic online brand

Having a strong, recognizable brand is essential for any company that intends to stay in business in the long run, but not only. In the era of the social web, the importance of personal branding has skyrocketed. Both young and seasoned professionals build their personal brand to impress potential clients and employers, foster their network, and achieve even greater career success.

A good personal brand should highlight the traits essential for your profession and show your genuine personality at the same time. Once you start applying for jobs, the employers will look up for you online, and the way your online profiles look can make or break your interview chances. If you haven’t considered managing your online brand before, it’s high time that you started. And our local resume writers will guide you along the way, answering the questions as follows:

✓ Why having a personal brand is essential in 2020

✓ Little-known tips on building and managing your brand online, and

✓ Ideas on how to reflect your brand on a resume.

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Why it’s important to have a personal brand?

Think that the need for personal branding is reserved for CEOs and public personas? Think twice. Today, anyone looking for professional recognition and a successful career needs to monitor and manage their online brand, and here’s why:

Employers, partners and clients will look up for you online. 70% of employers look up for candidates online and screen their social media presence. Imagine the hiring person from your dream company looking at your Facebook or Instagram. What will they find there – a versatility of your career and professional interests or dozens of reposted jokes and questionable graduation photos?

It helps you grow your network. A strong professional network is the pledge of career success. If you have a strong online presence that clearly communicates who you are professionally, where you are in your career at the moment and what your interests and passions are, people in your field will be more willing to connect with you. And lots of connections, in its turn, will lead to more professional opportunities.

It fosters credibility and trust. An extensive social media presence proves your professionalism and expertise in a certain area. This is how social proof works. If the recruiter sees you many connections, informative posts and positive testimonials on LinkedIn, they will most likely favor you over the candidates who didn’t work on their web presence.

Now that you are aware of the importance of having an online brand for your career, it’s time to work on your online profiles. Continue reading for simple, actionable steps. Also, take a look at how to be a great employee and which competencies to develop in the first place.

How to manage your brand online? 10 tips

1. Google yourself first

Before you roll up your sleeves to start developing your brand and improving your social media accounts, find out what’s already out there. Google your name and see what pops up. Chances are, you’ll come across plenty of social accounts or links you haven’t used for years and completely forgotten about. Maybe, you’ll come across reputation-damaging youth pictures or even find out that the search results are dominated by your namesake.

Start with removing the information that can throw shade on your professional reputation. Delete the pictures, profiles and any other information that doesn’t add up positively to your brand. If you don’t have access to your old profiles, there’s an option to request the content removal using Google’s public removal tool.

2. Define your brand and professional values

Before you start the branding process, get to know what you’re all about, both professionally and personally, and what kind of impression you’re trying to make. If you haven’t given it a careful consideration earlier, it’s high time that you started. Write down the core values that matter for you both personally and professionally – they can be sustainable business growth, family values, helping your community with educational projects, and more.

Also, define your approach to work and work ethics. Do others see you as a trusted advisor? Are you a person who fosters and energizes the teamwork for resolving complex problems? Or, are you a leader and innovator who definitely knows how to show initiative at work? The traits you define here will serve as a foundation for communicating your brand online.

3. Build your career vision

Do you know where you’re headed in your career in the next 3, 5 and 10 years? Having a clear career vision is important for your brand. It’s great if you have past academic and professional accomplishments you’re really proud of. However, in addition to sharing that you’ve made it to Dean’s List or increased staff retention by 22%, share your career goals and wishes with the audience.

Why is it important? Sharing your goals and desired path of career development gives the prospective employers and partners a broader perspective about you. Additionally, when people know your background and goals, they’ll be able to make professional offers in line with your career goals.

4. Update privacy settings

Carefully learn the privacy settings of each social platform that you use. By default, they usually make everything you post available for public and, in most cases, for search engines. So, check the privacy settings on your Facebook, Instagram and other accounts and update if necessary. You might want to make some of the profiles completely private and close them for visitors. But keep in mind that closing professional profiles isn’t the best tactic as their purpose is to establish your online presence.

Also note that everything you post online – even if you make these postings available for friends only – cannot be 100% confidential. So, be mindful of the information and pictures you share and restrict yourself from posting anything controversial.

5. Stay coherent across all platforms

All your profiles and pages should deliver the same message and use a similar writing style. Your brand should be recognizable anywhere people see it, and being consistent helps achieve it. All pages and profiles should give the same information about your background, values, career interests and look similarly. Whatever link the person clicks on a search engine, they should see the same professional image as you.

Inconsistent use of social media might mislead your audience. If you write in a reserved and professional manner of Facebook and then chat in a casual, relaxed way on Twitter, people will wonder how to perceive you and which of your online personas is authentic. Whether you write articles, share pictures or repost the news, use the same language everywhere.

6. Make professional connections

Your social media profiles shouldn’t be completely about you. It’s important that you interact and connect with other professionals as well as influential people in your industry. So, subscribe to people you find interesting, comment on their updates and share the most interesting news from them. You might also want to recognize someone’s work you’ve left particularly impressed by.

By doing so, you will not only strengthen the relationships with other professionals in your community and lay the foundation for the future projects and potential job offers. Moreover, your subscribers will see you as a person who recognizes and promotes the work of others and isn’t self-centered. And this will definitely add up to a positive impression about you.

For remote employees, having a strong online presence is even more important. If you dream of working from a home office, take a look at the top careers you might want to pursue:

7. Post the updates regularly

Whether you interact with an audience through social media, personal website or blog, remember that you should update your page and share the information regularly. It doesn’t mean that you should post something on a Facebook every day – if you’ve decided to post twice a week, that’s okay, but be sure to stick to this schedule.

What kind of information you’ll share depends on your brand and an image you’re looking to build. But, in either case, remember that it’s always better to share insights and your personal stories rather than simply posting pictures or news from online sources. Even if you repost something, accompany it with an informative insight from your experience – this will additionally prove your expertise. And sharing personal stories from time to time will help build trust and make you sound more authentic.

8. Consider creating a professional website

Having a professional website or blog is optional, but highly recommended for anyone who wants to take ownership about building an accomplished steady career. It is also an exceptional way to boost your visibility and recognition online. The options for using a website are almost limitless. You may run a professional blog and share the case studies, insights and your opinion on the recent industry events. You can announce the upcoming events if you’re a lecturer, or you may want to simply create a resume website with the portfolio of your works.

In either case, your website should communicate the same personality traits and values as your other online platforms do. If you decide to start a blog, be sure to update it regularly. For more tips on setting up and managing your personal website, read our guide:

9. Maintain your brand voice throughout all communications

Your personal brand shines through not only your blog posts and social media entries. It should also be maintained throughout all means of communications, be it Facebook comments, responses to emails, and more. in other words, if the values of your personal brand include positive attitude, willingness to grow your community and upbeat spirit, make sure that other communications reflect these values as well.

Also, you need to be consistent in your approach to external communications. Do you respond to all comments on social media or only react if asked a direct question? Do you consider all inquiries via email or ignore those coming from people you don’t know? Finally, do you respond to communications as soon as possible or take one hour in the evening to look through everything and answer if necessary? These tiny details will add up to your public image as well.

10. Don’t take it too serious

Based on the tips above, you may decide that building and maintaining your online brand is a lot of work. You have to stay away from posting anything which can be perceived as inappropriate, maintain a consistent image across all platforms and keep in touch with your subscribers.

While growing an online brand definitely takes time, thought and effort, don’t take it too seriously. All in all, you shouldn’t overthink every word and picture you share. The key tip here is to stay authentic while keeping everything you say professional. Find your core values and career interests and stick to them. In this case, your unique brand will shine through naturally.

How to reflect a personal brand in a resume?

Ideally, your resume and a cover letter should give the same impression as your profiles do. These documents are more formal, yet there are the ways to highlight your brand in them:

Design your resume using your brand colors. Colors is a powerful tool when it comes to online branding. So, be sure to use the same color in a resume that you have used in your personal website, email signature or social media. Moreover, each color has its effect and will subtly help you make the right impression.

Highlight accomplishments in line with your brand. If your brand’s top value is maximizing the team performance through coaching and customized training programs, be sure to focus on the accomplishments relevant to this trait. The best place to show off your brand-related accomplishments is a career summary.

Use testimonials. Little-known yet effective tactic for improving your resume is including 2-3 testimonials from your former employers and clients. Again, you need to choose the testimonials where others prove the personality traits essential for your brand.

Include links to your social profiles. An employer will look you up anyway, so save their time and effort and list the links to your professional social media and personal website in the resume’s header next to your contact address.

Apply with an error-free and well-written resume. No personal brand will help you land an interview if your resume contains typos, grammar and syntax issues. Consider hiring an online resume editor to make sure your resume looks flawless before you send it out.

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