Last month I published this article on LinkedIn on how to tell your personal brand story. The impetus for the article was based on my own experience on how best to share my experience while painting the picture of who I am and where I have been, so to speak. Here is a snippet of the article:
What tips would you add to creating your personal brand story?
June is one of my favorite times of year as it marks the new beginning for many college graduates. Many are trying to differentiate themselves from the competition in getting their first job. Whether you are a seasoned professional or a newbie, focusing on your personal brand story is important, especially when you are looking to breakout from the crowd.
Your LinkedIn profile should paint a picture beyond your resume of who you are and what you bring to the table. When I look at your LinkedIn profile, what do you want me to know? Are you a B2B rockstar? A Content Marketing Mastermind? And a data-driven professional?
Whether you are a 20-year professional or just starting out, you should consider how to promote yourself through LinkedIn. With more than 350 million users, it is becoming harder on LinkedIn to stand out from the crowd. With storytelling in mind, here are my seven steps to telling your personal brand story on LinkedIn.
Step One: Create Dynamic Headlines
Much like storytelling, your personal brand story needs to make sense and persuade folks to read your profile. You can certainly use your current title; however, think about how someone potentially will search for you. Use keywords in your headline. For example, I highlight my broad range of marketing and communications skills, so my title is “Marketing Leader. Social Media Strategist. Communications & Public Relations. Speaker & Writer. Problem Solver.” Jot down your ideas in terms of these areas to highlight what you want to your brand to stand for.
Step Two: Craft a Well-Rounded Summary
What areas of expertise do you want to highlight? Be strategic. You can use your summary section from your resume, but be short and sweet. This section should be your online elevator pitch. The summary area is also a great place to post all your SlideShare presentations or other multimedia content that provides the social proof that you are a great asset.
Recently, LinkedIn made it easier to create the best keywords for your profile by allowing you to access your data archive. Viveka von Rosen, host to one of the largest Twitter chats about LinkedIn #LinkedInChat, wrote a blog post about how to use the export tool to improve an organization’s marketing, but I believe you can also use it to improve the marketing of you.
Step Three: Show Diversity in Your Experience
If you are the main character in your personal brand story, how will you support your central theme? For example, if I want to be known as a digital-marketing expert, how will I convey this information?
What do you want people to know? It’s more than listing your accomplishments and responsibilities. Think about how you would describe your coherent roles and how the roles relate to your overall goal or next career move. All your roles should have a purpose. LinkedIn job positions should show progression and that through the years you have deepened your knowledge in a specific area.
Step Four: Sharpen Your Skills
Did you know that LinkedIn allows users to add up to 50 skills to their profiles? Jennifer McClure, president of Unbridled Talent LLC, mentioned in her Mashable interview that listing relevant skills helps candidates differentiate themselves from their competition: “Often LinkedIn profiles aren’t fully completed either because people are intimidated by the idea of writing a professional summary or aren’t skilled at effectively summarizing their experience. LinkedIn profiles should be viewed as a personal marketing brochure, and as such, they need to be concise, informative, and compelling.” Bottom line: Focus on your expertise, strengths, and skills to be more discoverable.
Continue reading the full article on LinkedIn.