At this point, i don’t think it is a secret at all that we are completely infatuated with Social Media. Having presented more than 10 workshops, done various talks, some consultations and sharing too-many-to-count impromptu tips, stories and news about social media, i still enjoy being surprised when social media keeps presenting opportunities and relationships that never before seemed possible. More about that in another post…
During our latest travels, someone we just met, said the title of this post to me .
You are just like i expected
Normally this would be an insult i would take very seriously. Being unpredictable, interesting, innovative, creative and spontaneous is some of the values i want to live by. So hearing someone say that they’re expectations of me were spot on might have well been the last words of our brief conversation… But it was not. I was rather impressed (as a video i watched from John O’Nolan some years ago flashed through my mind.)
In this video, John talks about the concept of Personal Branding in a way that has stuck with me for a couple of years now. Ever since, both Christine and i have been trying (sometimes more effective than other) to build a credible, authentic personal brand. I know this process is not complete and will probably never stop. But hearing someone say that how they’ve come to know us online was an accurate representation of who we were when we spent some time together, can hardly be an insult. It was in actual fact, rather encouraging and reassuring.
We value branding and marketing like most people in business, but authenticity in social media is more valuable than any campaign or any form of advertising. This is even more true when your business is small and personal – such as a photographer, musician, public speaker or entrepreneur. People will be very quick to realize that the expectation you are creating (branding) and what they experience when dealing with you (reality) is not the same. No one likes this realization. It is like being caught out by the fine print, or having a serious case of buyers remorse. It all has to do with creating and meeting (or exceeding) expectations.
So next time you update your status, share a video or post a tweet, remember that everything you put online is building your personal brand. Be sure that this brand of yours will be an accurate representation of who you are. This way, when people need to decide who to work with, they can feel like they already know you. They can relate and associate. They feel connected to what you do and what is important to you.
Suddenly business is personal and connections are authentic.
Meaning is created beyond just making money.
Business becomes fun.