What does Your Social Media Profile Say about You?

The purpose of a social media profile is to provide readers information about the person…..”you”. 

I often engage with business owners who have social media "accounts", but have only set it up to expose their business online, and have little to no interest in setting up or establishing a public personal profile.

Security, privacy or plain disinterest in the medium are the top three reasons I often hear for not wanting to utilize a personal profile.  Security for personal information, as well as privacy concerns are truly valid arguments.  However, understanding how to use social media correctly for business provides the business owner knowledge of how to gain a happy medium of exposing a personal persona, yet with all the security and privacies intact.

A social media profile can be set up and designed to publish only the information necessary to communicate an idea or perspective of whom the person is behind the business.  I’ve heard reports estimate that today, people are 86% more likely to do business with people they know, like and trust, then with a business they do not know.  The non-existence of a genuine, personal profile or a vague profile, loses its transparency and authenticity.  The results of this approach are truly a loss of opportunities, ineffective social media strategies, and ultimately, a possible loss of attracting new people to your business.

I’ve provided some ideas for writing an effective personal profile for social media.  Below I’ve summarized an article I found useful on the topic “How to Write the Best Social Media Profile …for you”  http://bit.ly/p4hqlU.
 

Headline 

Summarize yourself in five or six words – be creative and attractive!

  • Identify your key words (very important).
  • The focus of the profile should identify who you are and for what you want to be known?
  • The profile should clearly be designed to speak to whom you want to attract?  (a.k.a. your target audience)

Profile Picture

Many people overlook the importance of having a professional looking profile picture.  I believe the profile photo is one of the most important aspects of a profile.  After all, pictures paint 1000 words.  Again, social media is about people.  While I truly love and adore children and animals, the headshot needs to show your face.  If I meet you at a networking group and go home to try and connect with you online, and there are 5 people with your name, and there is no headshot of you, how can I be sure I am connecting with the right person?  Remove the doubt, get a good headshot.  Lighting should be in front of you and the background should appear professional and be without “noise”.

Content

Content is key to describing yourself and your business.  Below are some questions for you to consider answering as part of your profile’s content:

  • What are the goals and objectives of your social media strategy?
  • Who is your target market?
  • What is the product and/or service you offer?
  • How can you relate your persona to your services?
  • How can you balance your personal and business information to create a public profile?
  • What social media sites would you find your target audience?
  • How will you use social media to communicate?
  • What in your profile can be identified to attract your target audience?  What is in it for them?
  • Do you want to be known as a topic expert?  What is that topic?
  • Will you be projecting a business persona or are your opinions going to be purely personal?  (If you wish to establish yourself as the expert, it must be you speaking.)

Be sure to highlight

  • Achievements
  • Certifications
  • Awards
  • Accomplishments

Remember, in general people don’t like it when others brag

Try to be concise yet descriptive.  Make it more of a story.  Think of engaging the reader.  The ultimate function of a profile is to encourage the reader to go into action –to find out more about you and your business.  Even if the results are not a business transaction,  if a good impression is made on your readers, and you achieve the trust, know and like factor, it could result in the ultimate compliment –a referral.  Try to think of your profile as the basis of building relationships.

Tone

Make the tone of your profile fit with you and your personal style.  I always try to help people understand that social media is exactly the same as real life networking.  If you were to attend a networking event, your interests would be to meet and engage with people on a professional level.  Social Media is simply digitalizing the networking process. 

Some other helpful hints

  • Review other industry related profiles – for inspiration and ideas, please do not to copy.
  • Remember to make it personal –what I like to term as “professionally personal".  Social media is all about people.  Keep the content of your professional profile as a mix of personal and professional information that you are comfortable to publicly publish.
  • Before publishing, make sure you and someone you trust, proof read for spelling and grammar.  Don’t forget that the profile could be a first impression of you and your business.

I hope you found this information useful to your business today.  My business is all about serving you! –Many Blessings!
 

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