Building a Personal Brand on Social Media: 13 Expert Tips

Creating and maintaining a personal brand is an important part of any successful career, regardless of the industry. You can rewrite a new personal narrative to help you stand out from the crowd, especially in the digital marketing space.

If you think about it, your online behavior is a reflection of your brand, whether you’re aware of it or not. Just google your name and see where that leads you. One way to create a strong personal brand in digital marketing is to focus on learning digital marketing courses

Everything you’ll see based on the search result is what employers, buyers or potential partners will also see. And they’ll create their own interpretation out of it. In fact, according to Soocial, a global branding agency, 74% of US citizens are likely to buy from you if you have a trustworthy brand image. So if they read something they shouldn’t, it can hurt their career in the long run.

Learning how to building a personal brand on social media allows you to curate and take control of your online reputation. It’ll show people you’re an expert in this field and interested in these topics. In such cases, some people who see that information will likely collaborate with you on projects that can benefit you financially.

I reached out to 13 professionals from various industries to make your life easier in creating your personal branding strategies. Let’s look at what they have to say about their branding journey

text saying what is your personal brand

Expert Tips for Building a Personal Brand on Social Media

Social media is the driving force behind every successful personal brand. Whether you’re an artist, entrepreneur, or freelancer, establishing a reputable online presence is a promising venture. It’s a chance for you to leave your mark on people’s lives.

You can create strong relationships with your community when you put your personality front and center on your social media channels. But with countless creators trying to do the same things as you are, growth becomes a struggle. You don’t gain influence by sheer luck. You earn it by taking control of your personal reputation. Here are steps to building a brand on social media:

Audit your brand

Whatever you’re posting on the internet, whether it’s thought through or not, analyzing them lets you work with what you currently have. This is how you gain clarity on what you are known for right now and what you aspire to be known for in the future.

"A small overall online audit of their [clients] social presence, their big accomplishments within an organization, and prior to that. But always forward-looking about where they want to take their brand and how that ties into their overall career aspirations. Finally, how we carve into that in a thoughtful way."

Collect and organize your credentials, certifications, education, experiences, and accomplishments when doing a brand audit. It’ll give you a clear idea of the learned skills you can offer. Then list your interests, hobbies, and things you enjoy doing outside of your industry. This will allow you to be relatable in any environment.

Once you’ve collected all that information, you can define your brand story. It must include your purpose, values, and key messages so you can write descriptive words that capture who you really are. But be specific or witty enough to make you memorable. For example, “SEO expert helping companies scale.” Place these adjectives across your social media platforms for a uniform snapshot of your brand.

Make your profile attractive

An attractive social media profile is how you capture the attention of your target audience. It encourages them to contact you because they see you as a thought leader in your industry. So be sure to use quality, professional-looking photos that represent your brand.

While some people go for casual pictures or selfies to show their laid-back style, think about getting a professional photographer to take your picture for a more polished appearance, especially on LinkedIn.

Your descriptive adjective mentioned earlier is another valuable feature in your profile as well. You can place it in your LinkedIn headline and in your Instagram and TikTok bio. Although these are just minute details, it matters to those who see potential in you. They may question your credibility, expertise, or commitment to your field. As a result, they might pass you over in favor of someone with a more polished and professional presence.

"A lot of people don't think about how much it [personal brand] affects you... [But] now, employers do look at your entire online presence in making a hiring decision."

In fact, 84% of hiring managers use social media networks to recruit candidates. So a well-maintained brand profile provides additional verification of your qualifications and experience listed on your resume. It allows employers to see beyond the bullet points and delve deeper into your personality, interests, and the work you have done.

Hiring managers might look for evidence of your achievements, certifications, awards, and industry involvement through your social media activities and connections. But this doesn’t mean your online presence must always be professionally curated. You can always create a private social media account that consists of your closest friends and family.

Have a consistent brand message and voice

A brand message is the core message you want to say to your audience. It answers, “What do you want people to know or understand about your brand?” For instance a life coach would say, “Helping individuals unlock their full potential through mindful living.”

"Make sure that you've got clarity around your messaging. And I like to point people to the StoryBrand framework. It's a communication framework that has a really simple format for how people can nail down what their message is into about seven points."

The StoryBrand strategy is based on the idea that customers are the heroes of their own stories. Then position your brand as a guide to help customers overcome their challenges and achieve their desired outcomes.

Your brand voice is the way you communicate that message to your target audience. It’s all about your delivery, tone, language style, and personality of your brand’s communication. So the key question you have to answer is, “How do you want people to feel about your brand?”

For example, if your brand message is about mindful living, your brand voice can be calm, approachable, and supportive. You might use a casual tone, share personal stories, and provide practical tips to engage your audience in a relatable manner.

Consistency in those two elements is how you establish a clear and recognizable brand identity. It lets people associate specific characteristics, values, and qualities with your brand. This makes it easier for them to understand who you are and what you stand for. When your brand message and voice are consistent across different platforms and interactions, it creates a sense of reliability.

Be aware of brand burnout

Brand burnout is when your brand loses its magic, and your message becomes stale. As a result of straying away from your authenticity and why it matters, your audience unfollows you. They can tell that you’re now faking it, so be true to your brand’s purpose because that’s your north star.

Constantly creating something with your audience in mind is an admirable thing. But always hopping on the next trend is also tiring. This is not how you get out of touch with your true brand identity.

"Boldly stand behind your original ideas, whether that's about the future or reflections and wisdom about the past. Whatever you're feeling called to share in a way that you think is going to actually make a difference."

Asia Dore Brand Strategist and Founder of Asia Dore, LLC , LLC & Author of No BS Guide to Branding

Continuously seek ways to innovate and evolve your brand messaging. You can still keep the concept of it. But you should also introduce new products, services, or content that align with your brand but with a fresher perspective. That’s why keeping up with industry trends and changing consumer preferences is important.

Monitor audience feedback and let data speak for itself. Use analytics tools to gather insights on your social media channels, website traffic, email campaigns, and other marketing efforts.

Look for patterns and trends in your audience to understand their preferences and behavior. Then, adapt and refine your messaging and visual identity based on them. Experiment with new content formats, messaging styles, color schemes, and typography to breathe new life into your brand.

Leverage your expertise

Everybody has some sort of talent or interest. So taking advantage of that is how you set yourself apart from competitors. It positions you as someone who people can rely on regardless if you’re sharing educational or entertaining content.

"It [content strategy] has always been describing random kinds of hacks and tips and tricks that I just discovered through my day job [marketing]. So when I find a good tip or idea, I just summarize that. And that's the first building block of this content empire."

Posting nuggets of information positions you as someone who has valuable knowledge and insights to offer. People appreciate actionable advice that can help them solve their problems.

Especially now that the human attention span is shorter, bite-size content is something you can consider. Unless your forte is recording podcasts or writing long-form blogs, you can always repurpose them to maximize their impact.

For example, you can turn a blog post into a carousel and infographic. Then you can create a video summary of your key tips or share snippets of advice on social media. Repurposing allows you to reach different segments of your audience and increase the longevity of your content.

Leveraging your expertise is about helping others by sharing your learnings with the world for free. This effective content marketing strategy boosts your brand awareness and creates potential customers.

Start with consistent engagement

Engagement builds relationships. Responding to other users’ comments creates a sense of community. It’s how you show people who haven’t seen your content that you know what you’re talking about. Plus, replying to comments is also a great way to build a content bank.

"Consistently show up every day. Even if that means you just start out by commenting on five posts a day for a few months to build your way up to making your own posts, that's a great way to get started."

You’ll start to see a pattern to things you engage with, which might be the topics you care enough to discuss. So collect them in a document or spreadsheet. Write full posts on them and then create a content calendar.

Engagement is how you build a strong online presence and brand visibility. Don’t just wait for others to engage with you; take the initiative to start conversations.

When someone views your LinkedIn profile, message them and say, “Hey, I see you viewed my profile. Curious to know what brought you here?” But if they followed your account, you can also ask, “Hi, thank you for following me on Twitter. My goal is to help professionals like yourself achieve success. So if there’s anything you want me to write about, do send me a message.”

Expressing gratitude and asking for topic suggestions help build quality relationships and generate post ideas while overcoming creator’s block.

Keep a frequent posting rhythm

Posting regularly is how you stay relevant and on top of your target audience’s mind. It allows you to show up on their feeds or timelines consistently, which increases your exposure. So when they need expertise or solutions related to your niche, they think of you first.

"If you have a couple of hours planned once or twice a week when you can really knock out a bunch of content, I think that's the best-case scenario to stay consistent."

Dedicated time slots for content creation are a surefire way to keep a steady flow of posts. But inspiration can strike anytime, so write those ideas down in your notes and use them later. Again, use your content backlog for when you run out of inspiration.

Unless you want to post them right then and there, by all means, go for it. There are no strict rules for the most optimal time to post. But there are some guidelines to follow.

According to Sprout Social, the best time to post on social media is midweek, around 9 am to 12 nn. But study your analytics. If you don’t have any data to back you up yet, do your market research and start with informed guesses.

Keep posting and wait three to four weeks to collect insights from your analytics tools. Then, note down the times when people interacted with your best-performing content.

Experiment further once you know the most optimal time to post. As your follower grows, the best times to upload content also change.

Take an omnichannel approach

The omnichannel approach means being present and consistent across multiple platforms to reach your target audience. It’s important for broader brand visibility and ensures a cohesive customer experience across various touchpoints.

Consider platforms such as social media, websites, email marketing, and any other channels that align with your audience’s preferences and behaviors.

Using multiple channels improves brand perception. But juggling everything can be challenging, especially when you’re new to personal branding.

"If your brand is new and don't know where your people are hanging out, start on all platforms to find out where you're getting the most engagement. Not the likes, but the people who are actually hiring you... There has to be an ROI for all the social media work."

Use a social media management tool that allows you to post across platforms at once. But consider the unique features and requirements of each platform and adapt your content type to suit the medium and audience. This could involve repurposing content, creating channel-specific content, or adapting the format to fit the platform.

For example, plain text, blogs, and infographics perform well on LinkedIn, whether sharing tips or talking about something you realized. On the other hand, Instagram is more for visual-heavy feeds like static images, carousels, and short and disappearing videos. But more lifestyle, behind-the-scenes, and tutorials.

Some successful brands take screenshots of their Twitter threads and repost them on LinkedIn and Instagram. In contrast, others repurpose their TikTok videos on YouTube shorts and Instagram reels.

Give importance to in-person interaction

You want to get with the times, because most marketing is online now. But people still underestimate in-person interaction. While digital platforms provide convenience and reach, meeting someone in real life feels more genuine.

Face-to-face interactions let you feel their energy and vice versa. You can engage in spontaneous conversations that can be more meaningful and memorable. It allows people to experience your brand firsthand, creating a tangible and sensory connection.

"I'm not the most techie person. I've built a personal brand that has grown me two seven-figure businesses. But the way I did it that worked for me was meeting people face-to-face. So in a digital landscape for marketing and self-promotion, there can be a lot of noise."

Attend or host your own events like workshops, seminars, or product launches, to create opportunities for direct interaction with your audience. These events can showcase your expertise, generate buzz, and foster community engagement. You can always use digital platforms to amplify your efforts.

Capitalize on brand alliances

Brand alliances refer to partnerships or collaborations with other brands who share similar values, target audiences, or complementary offerings. By aligning yourself with someone reputable, you can tap into their existing customer base and gain exposure to new audiences.

"There's a thing you can do from a strategic branding standpoint that you surround yourself with these other brands that have a bigger impact than you, and you get the after-effect of it. Some of the strengths of that brand now rub off on [you]."

This is how you build authority by association. When you are seen collaborating, working, or being endorsed by reputable individuals, it can positively impact how people see you.

Reach out to thought leaders, experts, or influencers with similar brand values and target audiences. Then pitch an idea that highlights the mutual benefits of collaboration. Offer value in terms of content contributions, joint projects, endorsements, or testimonials.

Be a guest on podcasts, webinars, or speaking events. It’s a powerful way to share your expertise and life journey with a wider audience. Don’t let the fear of public speaking hold you back. Embracing these opportunities can lead to tremendous growth and bring more valuable prospects.

Find other ways to monetize your brand 

Your brand can be a way for you to achieve financial stability. You create a revenue stream to support your business and personal endeavors by monetizing it. It allows you to reinvest in your brand by allocating resources to marketing, product development, and expanding your reach.

Offering free trials or creating valuable content establishes trust and credibility with your audience. As your brand gains recognition and a loyal following, other businesses may approach you for partnerships, sponsored content, or brand collaborations.

These collaborations not only provide additional revenue streams but also expose your brand to new audiences and expand your reach. But you must be strategic with your partnerships, like affiliate marketing.

"If you want to work with a brand, make a piece of content. Send it to the entire social media department and say 'I love your brand, love what you're doing. Just wanted to make you this piece of content. If you want to collab, I'm available.' Then master the key of the follow-up, and you'll be surprised how easy it is to get deals."

Following up with your prospects helps build and maintain relationships. But time is of the essence. Responding promptly to emails, messages, or requests shows respect and keeps the conversation moving forward.

Personalize your message by referencing specific details from previous interactions to show that you remember and value the collaboration. But most importantly, express gratitude and write a clear call to action to ensure everyone is on the same page. It also gives forward momentum on the next steps to progress the relationship.

Get a professional representation when necessary

Getting representation through a PR agency is a great way to manage and amplify your brand’s image and secure media opportunities.

PR professionals have the expertise and networks to effectively shape public perception. They can help you craft compelling press releases and secure media coverage that enhances your reputation. But you need to clarify the areas where you need assistance.

Schedule interviews or consultations with potential PR representatives. Use this opportunity to discuss your brand, ask about their experience, and gauge their understanding of your goals. Consider their communication style, professionalism, and the chemistry between you.

"Make sure they have the skillset you're looking for. [They'll] craft your messaging, reach out effectively to an extensive list of media and reporters that you're the expert source, and they'll frame your story."

While having a representative involves a financial investment, they can save time to focus on other areas of your business.

a brand personality in front of a camera

9 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Building a Personal Brand on Social Media

Having a personal brand is exciting, filled with opportunities to show the world what you’re made of. But it’s also important to be aware of the potential pitfalls that can hinder your progress. Making mistakes is unavoidable, but when you know what not to do when building a personal brand, you expedite the learning process. It’ll allow you to navigate your personal branding journey with greater confidence and success.

  • Taking shortcuts: One of the ways people cut corners to make them seem successful is buying followers. But these accounts are usually bots or inactive accounts that won’t engage with your content. The bottom line is you can’t fake a community when you go this route. Although it’ll show that you have a huge following, your engagement rate will prove otherwise.
  • Lying about your story: Fabricating or exaggerating your story or accomplishments may initially attract attention and admiration. But it tarnishes your reputation. People are drawn to genuine stories, so being honest and transparent about your journey is important.
  • Not knowing your ‘Why’: Failing to define your purpose and the underlying motivation behind your brand can result in a lack of clarity and direction. It’ll make creating a content plan challenging and even more difficult for your audience to connect with and support you.
  • Failure to recognize your strengths: Ignoring or neglecting to identify and leverage your unique capabilities will slow your brand’s growth. You’ll end up with missed opportunities for collaboration, and you’ll find it difficult to stand out in a crowded social media landscape. 
  • Thinking everything is a competition: Approaching personal branding with a competitive mindset and constantly comparing yourself to others limits your potential. You’ll lose sight of what’s important; your story and values, and you’ll end up neglecting your audience.
  • Creating content without substance: People like content that holds value. Something that teaches them about a topic or makes them realize something. But when you prioritize content volume over content quality, you’ll also attract a low-quality audience. So there may be a struggle to get your followers to convert to paying customers. Take Ariana Renee Trejos’s (Arii) story as an example. Her Instagram is well-curated on her lifestyle aesthetics, with over 2 million followers. But she couldn’t sell more than 36 t-shirts when she decided to launch her clothing line.
  • Serving everybody: If you’re trying to appeal to everyone, you’re not targeting anyone. Instead, it’s crucial to identify your target audience, understand their needs, and tailor your content and messaging to resonate with them. 
  • Inconsistent efforts: Inconsistency in posting frequency, engagement, or messaging shows that you don’t value your audience. If you remain inactive for a while, they will lose interest and might even unfollow you. Consistency is key to maintaining audience engagement.

Recommended Courses for Building a Personal Brand on Social Media

Personal Branding Blueprint

This course covers everything you need to know, from the top 24 knowledge and authority hacks that will make you a guru to building your online and offline personal brand portfolio using social media, videos, and even special QR code business cards.

One thing that I like about this course is that the end of each section has an activity for you to accomplish. This will help you solidify and retain things you learned better. Plus, there’s a daily success formula that helps you establish routines over 12 to 24 months to become a renowned expert in your niche.

As a bonus, you also get to dive into two inspiring case studies of success stories, snag three PDF templates, and even get a networking script for high-value positioning with CEOs and entrepreneurs.

Develop And Control Your Personal Brand

This course breaks down the entire personal branding process so that you can achieve your goals in no time. It gives you practical techniques to develop, present, and control your brand. It covers everything from leveraging your strengths and skills to using tools like social media and Google Analytics to build your brand presence. Compared to other courses mentioned, this one thoroughly explains every detail.

Although it’s only 44 minutes long, it teaches you how to launch a personal brand from the ground up. It even has a SWOT analysis for defining yourself. I like this course because it teaches you how to navigate any potential crisis and sharpen your brand image.

Failing to handle a crisis can lead to damage to your personal brand’s reputation. Negative information or actions may spread quickly, and if you don’t address them promptly and appropriately, it can tarnish your image and credibility.

Visual content-wise, it’s engaging with captions and fun animated cartoon characters to explain the case studies that make the concepts stick.

Personal Branding: Get It Right With Powerful Brand Design

This course will show you the secrets to grabbing your ideal client’s attention with powerful personal branding. Think brand aesthetics: colors, fonts, logos, and social media pages that make your brand stand out. But it’s not all about the facade of your social media profile that adds credibility to your brand. It has to have substance.

You’ll also discover how to write a killer brand copy that connects with your ideal clients on a deeper level. So at the end of the course, there are questions to help you gain clarity on your personal brand. And you can take notes directly in the course platform, so there is no need to juggle multiple windows on your screen.

Fundamentals Of Personal Branding For Experts And Professionals

In this course, you’ll start by understanding the purpose of personal branding and how to build a powerful brand from scratch. The course walks you through refining your expertise and positioning yourself as a credible source. And you’ll learn how to specialize and target a specific audience to make a real impact.

One of my favorite parts was learning how to develop my first low-entry educational product, like a book or an online course. It’s a game-changer because it establishes you as an authority in your field and attracts amazing business opportunities. It also covers creating a brand visual presentation that reflects your personality, expertise, and values.

I should mention that this course isn’t about getting more followers or becoming an influencer. It’s designed for serious experts like you who want to establish themselves professionally, generate revenue from their expertise, and build an authentic brand.

This course provides practical strategies, step-by-step guidance, and even downloadable key takeaways and assignments for better learning. It’s a comprehensive package that equips you with everything you need to kick-start your brand on a budget.

Frequently Asked Questions About Building a Personal Brand on Social Media

  • Which social media platforms should I focus on for building my personal brand?

Choosing a platform for your brand differs based on your target audience and what you’re offering. So you have to do your research to identify where your audience spends the most time and tailor your presence accordingly.

If your brand involves timely information, quick tips, or engaging in discussions, Twitter can be a valuable platform. But if you’re more on providing valuable insights, answering industry-specific questions, and positioning yourself as an authority, try Quora.

There are also platforms like TikTok for posting videos, and is particularly popular among younger audiences. However, if your goal is to create an exclusive group for your community, Facebook and LinkedIn are the solution for that.

  • How do I handle negative feedback or online criticism as part of my personal brand?

Negative feedback and online criticism are inevitable, especially when you have a strong stance on something. But it also presents growth opportunities. Respond to criticism with grace, addressing concerns and providing solutions when possible.

Avoid engaging in online arguments and instead focus on maintaining a positive and professional tone. Learn from constructive feedback and use it to improve your personal brand and offerings.

  • What metrics should I track to measure the success of my personal branding efforts?

The metrics to track depends on your goals and the platforms you use. Some key metrics include engagement rates (likes, comments, shares), follower growth, reach, website traffic, and conversion rates. Keep an eye on these metrics over time to assess the impact of your personal branding efforts and make data-driven decisions.

  • How often should I post on social media to maintain an active presence?

Consistency is the name of the game, but posting frequency varies across platforms. I recommend posting daily without spamming your audience. Find a posting schedule that works for you and allows you to always deliver high-quality content. Experiment with different posting frequencies and observe engagement patterns to find the sweet spot for your personal brand.

  • Should I use paid advertising to promote my personal brand on social media?

Paid advertising is an effective way to amplify your brand and reach a wider audience. However, you must align your advertising strategy with your goals and budget. Consider targeting specific demographics or interests relevant to your personal brand.

Start with a small budget, test different ads, and analyze the results to optimize your campaigns. However, organic engagement and building genuine connections should remain at the core of your personal branding efforts.

Key Takeaways

Your personal branding on social media is where your unique identity becomes an asset, and your journey becomes an inspiration. So take control of your online narrative because if not, the internet will do it for you.

Starting a brand from scratch or doing a complete rebranding is scary, but oftentimes it’s worth it. I’ll let you in on a secret.

Most people with successful personal brands felt the same way. But the only difference is they stopped comparing themselves to those who have been building their brands years before them. So focus on your legacy instead of the vanity metrics you see online.

It’s time to put your ideas into motion. Implement the tips and strategies you learned here, and put your knowledge into practice. The only way to stop your mind from doubting your potential is action. However, if you still need to dive deeper into personal branding strategies, Skill Success is the platform to learn them.

Skill Success offers an All Access Pass to over 3,500 courses not only in building a personal brand. They also have a library of on-demand video lectures on entrepreneurship, tech, and personal development. With gamification features, you can keep track of your learning goals through reward badges.

Building a personal brand is an ongoing journey. It requires dedication, consistency, and the ability to adapt. As you embark on this transformative path, never forget to celebrate your unique self and the incredible value you bring to the world.

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