The most powerful thing about social media is that you are able to portray yourself in exactly the light that you would like to.
For pessimists – you are thinking of the Catfish out there. People pretending to be someone that they are NOT at all.
For optimists – you are thinking of the celebrities and companies showing transparency so that we can get a hint at MORE than what mainstream media tells us.
And for those of us early in our careers – this is our chance to present ourselves in a professional manner and build a personal brand. What many experts say is that you need to find a voice. When I started my nonprofit career almost 4 years ago, I think I stated that my voice will be “expert on social media for nonprofits.”
My understanding from reading article after article was that your voice needs to remain consistent throughout all platforms so that people aren’t mixed up when they see your presence. And this is true…
However, just like anything, it should be taken with a grain of salt. Four years ago, I had what I thought was my “brand” or my “voice”. Things change, though, and it is tough to KEEP that voice throughout everything.
How do you keep it?
1. Have a good mix
My difficulty was keeping my voice was the “always having to be an expert” in the back of my head. When I decided that I would disperse personality and NON-social media messaging, I gained some response.
2. Be Yourself
Your goal may be to show your expertise or to only speak on subject matter, but those blogs and brands are a dime a dozen on the interwebs now. You must BE YOURSELF in order to get true engagement.
3. Have Your Voice as the Foundation, not the entirety of your presence.
Your “brand” or “voice” should always be in the back of your mind, but it shouldn’t LEAD the charge with your messaging. Your messaging should pertain to current events and trends with an echo of your voice to it.
Has anyone else experienced these growing pains when keeping up with their online presence? I’d love to hear from others because I may WANT to be an expert, but I’m not just yet.