If you've been reading 'Are You Ready to Be A Brand?' and have decided that you're ready to define your online persona, I've put together a few tips to help you. There are no hard and fast rules, the most important thing is to be yourself and the rest will follow - even though image is important, authenticity is key, so consider your USP carefully before you throw out your wardrobe and start again!
1) Who are you? Start here, spend hours thinking about it. Do a mood board, try a diagram, do not move on until you’ve decided who you are and what you’re trying to achieve.
2) Research. What’s your USP? Do you have a niche? What are you going to be telling the world about? Is someone else already doing what you’re planning to do? How are you different? Who are you selling to? Create little personas to help you define your audience.
3) Branding – you might not need a logo to start with or a clever colour scheme but do have a think about your profile picture – this is the first thing anyone will see so make sure it’s good. Think about your audience – is this serious, business content or fashionista central? Use your social media pages to confirm what you stand for.
4) Who cares? It is time to create interesting content and go and find your audience. This could be engaging images for instagram, tweets or videos. You may decide to stick to social media but it is worth considering a blog where you can build links back and hold all your content in one place. Blogs are more time-consuming so think about this before diving in.
5) Consistency – this is the hard bit because once you start to build your audience, it is easiest if there is a regular, consistent approach. Try not to over-commit in the first instance and look at quality over quantity. Try to stick to a ratio to make sure you sticking to your USP –eg – 1 personal tweet, 2 business tweets, 2 RTs
6) Planning – a calendar of posts or marketing activity can help. Try to do regular posts on the same day each week to grow your audience. Try scheduling in advance to make it easier.
7) Social Media – think about all the channels. They may not all be right for you but at least get your handle just in case. Consider Twitter, Facebook Pages, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, Google+ and Linked In. Import your address book from your emails and add everyone you know. You can also use scheduling tools like Hootsuite and Sprout to help you to manage your content.
8) Marketing – make sure you share your brand with other people. Think about a press release if it is exciting enough, get business cards, add it to your email signature, get a mailing list by someone like MailChimp. Think big! You never know, you could be the next big thing.