While working at a digital marketing agency, my life revolves around getting our clients as much exposure as possible. There are many nights where I lay awake because my brain is too busy thinking of ideas I can pitch to a client. I once even missed my subway stop because I was day-dreaming up a new social media campaign. The notes on my iPhone are filled with words and phrases no one other than me can understand. Ideas come and go so fast that they easily become gibberish while on the trail of being communicated from my head, to my hand, to finally arriving safely in my digital notepad. To normal people, this may sound strange, but passionate lovers of digital and traditional marketing out there (Hopefully I am not alone!) Know the exact feeling I am describing.
I have learned so much about different powerful strategies we employ to promote a strong internet presence for B2C companies. After a while, I began to think about how I could give myself a better online presence. Branding is critical to business, so why not turn the tables and brand myself?
Portraying an image that relates to my professional path and goals online will help me in the long run. Everything I do, I try and find connections to help my personal and professional development. In a world where creative media jobs are few and far between only the strong survive. Let me clarify. By survive, I mean complete the ultimate millennial goal, get paid for doing what you love!
Parents, school teachers, or any older person you have ever come into contact with has probably told you, “Don’t post anything bad on social media, your future employers will see it, and you will never be hired. And on top of that, make everything private so they will never find it anyway”. That annoying tidbit of advice is still semi-accurate but needs an update. You should 150% never post about anything illegal, racial slurs, underage drinking, or anything that paints an undesirable picture of you.
However, where the update comes in is that sometimes, posting content that is different and pushes the boundaries of traditional social media rules can make you stand out. It all depends on what your goals are.
Think about Elliot Tebele; he is a media mogul at this point. He makes up to thirty-five thousand dollars Per sponsored Instagram post, owns his own media company, and has twenty million followers across different platforms. How did a regular internet savvy teen build himself into this powerhouse in just about five years? Memes.
He built a career out of editing pictures and captions into the internet infatuation that are memes. His online presence was exploding because everyone loved the content he was putting out. Memes making fun of the government, social norms, or pop culture references aren’t traditionally “appropriate” but if you are as genius as Tebele, that won’t stop you.
Cases like that are defiantly rare. Although interesting to read about, that does not make me want to go out and start a meme account in hopes of generating millions. People in my demographic (college-aged future media professionals) should use their platforms as a marketing tool for themselves.
One tool I use to control my online image is Instagram. I am a visual person, so Instagram instantly appeals to me as a top social media platform.
Instagram is all about instant visual gratification. If someone comes across your profile and sees that you have a nice feed of pictures, a large following, and likes they are going to impress. This could lead to many different opportunities such as sponsorships, internships, and brand ambassador positions. There are countless stories that are proven examples. If someone loves a brand and decides to post high-quality pictures of them “promoting” the brand’s product, all while tagging and interacting with the brand, they can easily build a following. Then, just like clockwork, they get sent free promotional merchandise from that brand in exchange for more posts.
On top of opening doors to different industries, there is no better feeling than applying for a job and including your social media handle or bringing it up in an interview for a media company. Many employers may jump to reap the benefits of having a staff member with a profitable social media following. This gives me an added layer of confidence and even additional talking points.
The best way to grow your Instagram following organically is simple. All you have to do is network. Are you going out to a popular restaurant in Philadelphia? Post about it. Add a location, take pictures, tag the restaurant’s accounts, tag famous Philadelphia food accounts, and use hashtags. Chances are you will get a lot of interaction. You can use this basic formula for anything; concerts, festivals, movies, going for a walk in the park, and anything else you can think of. Over time this will not only publicize all the cool things you do, but it will grow the people watching as well.
I could write a whole blog on how to get more Instagram likes and followers, but you get the idea. It all boils down to posting good content and interacting with others as much as possible.
My other favorite social platform is LinkedIn. My boss makes fun of me for my level of interest in the business networking site.
If you can harness the power of this site, the world is yours. It is a place to brag about yourself and publish any and all of your accomplishments. Recruiters are always watching, and it is not hard to get their attention. Build your profile as strong as possible by connecting with friends, family, co-workers, classmates and industry professionals and watch the magic happen.
Find yourself void of resume worthy material? There are thousands of articles and resources on LinkedIn. Build connections in your dream field, research companies all over the world, look at job postings the criteria that each job title requires, you can even directly message the person who holds your dream job. People are often friendly and more than willing to hand down some advice. If you want to start building a professional presence, this is ground zero. This is where you should spend the most time.
I hope this blog serves as an inspiration to young professionals to harness the power of their online presence and use it to accomplish your goals. This is an exciting time to be in digital industries and being creative and smart with your online aura will give you the edge you need to succeed.
All of us here at Results Driven Marketing, spend our days helping businesses to Turn Clicks Into Clients. One of the best ways to do this is through a successful brand strategy that maintains a strong internet presence. Contact us if you want to know how we can help your company flourish online, we would love to hear from you!