In the First World, for many years now, people have discovered and adopted the concept: YOU ARE YOUR PERSONAL BRAND. When you browse through LinkedIn and connect with peers from around the world, it becomes remarkable how many people from Europe, the US, Asia are proactively using LinkedIn to build their personal brand.
My aim as an entrepreneur is to show people in Latin America what can be done with LinkedIn. Certainly, some people are already using LinkedIn very well, but my goal is to get more people to discover the enormous potential that LinkedIn offers.
My first steps on LinkedIn
I started using Linkedin regularly a few months ago. I have been a member of LinkedIn since 2004. Initially, I used it to connect with business professionals I would encounter at work meetings. Apart from making a direct link, I would not interact much else.
Every now and then I would log in, and read a little bit, and post a comment like "Happy Birthday" or "Congratulations on the new job," but my interaction was very poor. In fact, I didn't even know about LinkedIn's SSI.
Almost a year ago, when I decided to launch a Start-Up, AMO Growth, which focused on an industry I did not know nor had any previous contacts, I started using LinkedIn to make new connections. Suddenly I discovered that I had an incredible database at my disposal and that people accepted my invitations and even better, with many of them I could interact.
Improving my LinkedIn Profile
It was a real learning experience to understand how to connect and how to interact. I realized very quickly that my Linkedin profile was very poor. It took me a while to improve my profile, I took the time to consult other profiles, I read some books, I asked for advice and little by little started adjusting my profile. Then I started to make comments, I signed up in groups, I gave recommendations. Following the advice of some gurus, I started to read the comments to understand the potential problems that clients might have. Until one day, I noticed that LinkedIn, as a social network, required an investment of my time. Notice that I use the word investment because the day I had my "eureka" moment, I realized that it was actually an investment and not a hobby.
Start Sharing Content
After that eureka moment, I wanted more... So that's when my biggest challenges began because the thought of having to start creating content made my blood run cold.
I realized how important it was, but I couldn't take that first step. Until one day I had a second "eureka" moment: the problem I had, surely many other people would have.
That's when we decided to delve into the problem and try to solve it somehow (as a good Start-Up we pivot). There were hours of trial and error, but gradually we corrected the process until we reached a product, which precisely aims to solve the problem of creating content.
On LinkedIn or the web, there are excellent workshops that teach how to improve your profile, to generate leads, to use LinkedIn properly, but there is a huge elephant in the room that nobody talks about: how to create content in a way that is systematic and that has an impact. That's why we decided that our focus would be precisely on that "last mile": helping people to create content in a very simple way and with a minimum investment of time. After all, I feel that we all want to show what we are experts in.
A personal brand is your reputation
Because ultimately, your personal brand is your reputation. It is to elegantly show who you are, what you are interested in, what you are an expert in. It's not about selling, it's much more sophisticated. It's about creating a link with those who might benefit from your expertise. Welcome to the world of Social Selling.
And the truth is that the only person who can take care of your reputation is you. I know I'm not saying anything new, but what I do know (because I’ve been there) is that starting to create relevant content for LinkedIn and measuring its impact is more difficult than climbing Everest.
We are in 2020 and I want to share with you a brilliant article that Tom Peters wrote in 1997 (YES IN 1997!). It is called The Brand Called You. Peters was already talking about the importance of building your brand in 1997 when social networks were not nearly the rage they are today.
That's why I insist that today, having a social network like LinkedIn is an opportunity we should not miss. From an organic point of view, LinkedIn is very generous, because unlike other social networks (Facebook or Instagram) you don't have to pay a fee to generate connections, you just have to make interactions and if you add content to that, it's like injecting nitrous oxide into an engine, your personal brand will rapidly take off.
If you got to this point in this article it's because you probably experienced the same difficulties that I did. My goal is to help you solve this problem. If it's not me, maybe it's someone else, but I encourage you to do so; I invite you to jump on the bandwagon and to look for me in the first seat where I will be waiting for you.