When is the right time to work on your personal branding? NOW!
You wouldn’t believe how many people reach out to me when they are between positions or unhappy in their current position and ask:
How do I get my LinkedIn looking good?
But their timing is off. It takes years to finetune your brand and create a voice for yourself. The time to work on your personal brand is when you are happy in your current position and have no intention of going anywhere.
What?! Why would you work on your personal brand if you are happy? Let me tell you why.
- Your voice/tone of your LinkedIn will reflect it.
- It takes time to build up a reputation. It doesn’t happen overnight. Expect at least 6-12 months for this to occur.
Now let me tell you the steps I took:
- Unless you are a branding expert, I recommend you find a LinkedIn makeover service. There are many of them on google. Do you your homework and expect to spend between $200-$2000
- Get a professional headshot. No, this is not the same thing as a selfie. I found my photographer on Thumbtack and it took less than 30 minutes and cost me about $150
- Have a professional header designed. Google it, there are companies that can turn this around for you for about $30-$50
- Start posting and interacting on LinkedIn/Twitter. There are many tools that let you schedule content that you find interesting for your network and schedule it for the future. I personally find this content in the evenings when my kids have gone to sleep and schedule it for later. My goals for LinkedIn and Twitter are as follows: 1 LinkedIn post per day, 10 Twitter posts per day.
- Get your voice heard. Share your expertise with your followers. This could be blogs or just general posts where you can share some of the learnings you have had through your career.
- Reach out to people you want to network with in your industry and see if there is anything you can do to help them out. The best relationships happen when you can provide some skill you have to help someone else. (And it just feels good)
Yes, this seems like a lot of time and money. It’s an investment in your career. Therefore you can’t wait until you are ready to change jobs or have been laid off. Start now, build up a strong network that you are providing value to. When the time comes, they will likely return the favor.