Thursday, July 23, 2009


Branding yourself does not mean you have to put up billboards of yourself around town. The virtual world is your magic lamp; do the following and see how you stand taller among your peers.

Set up a public profile

The starting point. Go to a professional networking site, LinkedIn strongly recommended, and create an account. There are others too out there, but LinkedIn is by far the most effective and a market leader. It is to networking what Google is to search.

Being on LinkedIn is like being at a business conference, and a meeting, and a job interview - all at the same time. 24x7. Someone, somewhere is looking at you through your profile – the part where you post relevant information about yourself after creating an account. It has almost become standard practice to check one’s profile (if they have one) on LinkedIn whenever a professional acquaintance is created. As a professional, someone is looking at you, whether you want them to or not. While they are at it, you might as well put your best face forward. Through your profile. So make sure your profile is well dressed for the occasion.

When you create your profile, keep the following in mind:

Vanity URL: LinkedIn allows you to have a URL with your name as a part of it like Get it and point people to this link.
Your professional ‘headline’: Its like a tagline below a brand. Make yours with no less an impact than Nike’s ‘Just do it.’ In a few words say what you do. Be creative; go beyond ‘Senior Manager – Logistics with a chocolate company.’ Try something like ‘I ensure your date gets her chocolates.’ Every time your name pops up, your professional headline tags along. Make it wink at people; tempt them to come to you.

Summarize your professional experience and goals: This is the part likely to be read most by those looking at your profile. In a few lines write about what you are all about – your professional experience, your goals and a mention of what you are doing at LinkedIn. Don’t hesitate to cover what you are looking for or are interested in. Treat it like it is your 30 seconds in the spotlight.

What specialties do you have in your industries of expertise? If you have some special experiences or skills, this is the place to mention it. Just saying ‘Newspaper Designer’ may not be enough – be specific about the systems you are most adept at and the creative elements you can be trusted to handle.

And the same goes for any profession you are in – engineering, healthcare, software, sales, etc.

Work Experience: Not only does this convey where you have worked in the past and in what capacity, but also provides an opportunity to connect with current and past colleagues who have the same companies mentioned on their profiles. It also makes reference checks easier.

Education: Like your career information, telling the world about your educational background can also be important to those wishing to associate with you professionally. And it also helps you connect with those you went to school with.

Websites: If you have any personal and work websites or blogs, you can provide ready links to those from your profile. These can also be links to your portfolio, RSS feeds, photo galleries, videos on YouTube or any other web resource.

No comments:

Post a Comment