Earlier this week I met with Chicago area executive and of course I brought up the subject of social media. After talking about her experience generally, she shared, specifically, and somewhat matter of factly, that “once a week or so” she will post something on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. My poker face surely expressed what I was thinking, and she went defensive and responded, “what? Is that wrong?” I blurted out “if you can’t interact regularly, it’s probably a waste of time.”
It was clear, pretty soon into our conversation, that her commitment to the medium was lackluster. I explained, my vision, that in order to be successful online, you need to be active, be a part of the conversation daily, and interact as often as you can with others. She shrugged her shoulders, raised her hands in the air, and literally said “I give up.”
I’ve been thinking about our conversation since then and decided to sit down at my laptop and offer some thoughts.
- Before you go online, know your voice. What are you going to share, opine, counter, debate, and like. In other words, if we were meeting on a blind date and I asked you to describe yourself… So who are you online? Is your interest personal, professional or a combination of both?
- Once you get past step #1, be prepared to commit to sharing intriguing content, captivating photos and videos, and consistent posts to ensure you stands out. Period.
Why does voice matter? Creating a voice for you – that is, your brand, is essential for many reasons. It creates a natural conversation with your audience and humanizes you.
In short, your followers want to find a connection with you.
How do I find my voice? Finding your voice shouldn’t be a daunting task. The key to finding your voice is determining the adjectives that best describe you — are you friendly, playful, warm or inspiring? What story do you want to tell about yourself? What is your expertise or foundation of knowledge?
This isn’t a sprint… take some quiet time to get comfortable with who you want to be online. Start with who you are professionally (CEO, director, manager, etc.). Then add in who you are personally. (dad, mom, uncle, party boy, etc.) Find a balance between the two and you’ll be ready for the next step.
Great advice, Andrew! I agree wholeheartedly and probably have a similar conversation at least once a week. It’s harsh but true: Get on board or get out of the way!