You know that horrible dream where you’re being chased by someone with a knife, and you try to scream but nothing comes out? Ever feel like posting on Twitter or LinkedIn is just like that?
Not the knife part, but the silent scream. Yet, in real life, you’re an amazing, intelligent, professional women, a business leader in your field or company. You know that you’re admired by your peers and colleagues at work. Yet, you, like me avoid connecting on social media out of fear. Fear of being judged, fear of looking uninformed, or fear of being humiliated in front of everyone.
Feeling invisible was worse than the fear
I had a moment that changed my view of social media. Read on . . . here’s what happened.
I recently sat in a social media seminar, scoring my personal social media presence on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and others. I was stunned, to put it mildly. A perfect score was 300 points, and I scored a pathetic 38. The facilitator pointed out that although I was well regarded in my space, I was the Invisible Woman. I had disappeared in the cyberworld. I realized that not connecting on Social Media made me seem obsolete, like my career had expired. This felt worse than scared… it was a lonely place.
A Moment of Truth – The Hard Way
In the past I found that success led to success, and others will notice—somewhat of a “build it and they will come” frame of mind. Or so I thought.
Note to self: How could this be? I sat there silently for moments, a lump in my throat. “Build it and they will come” was no longer true. Argh! My belief, that once had been true, had grown false over time.
You Can Do Better – Learn from My Mistakes
But—and this is a big but—professionals outside of my career space had no clue who I was. To them, I was an unknown. Moreover, head down and feet to the pavement, I was unaware that as an invisible woman, I was dramatically limiting my future opportunities.
With today’s rapidly shifting technologies our next career opportunities and the moves after that will be redefined by the power of social media.
Three lessons I learned quickly for changing my game:
· Awareness of the continually shifting environment is essential.
· Visibility of my brand is critical.
· Opportunity presents itself for making myself known every week and every month by building my online presence.
As you explore expanding your social media universe, start where you are and then adjust. Know that you can do this. Remember how AMAZING you truly are!!!
– Have a Vision. Choose one site—LinkedIn, Meetup, Twitter, Indeed, Facebook, or Instagram. Add additional social media platforms as you build connections and confidence.
– Build Your Brand:
- Post a Photo:Use the same recent, professional, smiling, and forward-facing photo for all social media site.
- Add a Headline: Create a headline. Use the same name, career area of expertise, and career description across these platforms.
Include Keywords:The right keywords help recruiters and colleagues find you. First, search for ten to twelve job descriptions, visit www.tagcrowd.com;copy and paste the job descriptions into the search box. TagCrowd creates a word cloud for visualizing word frequencies in any text. Next, copy and paste the résumés or online profiles of ten to twelve people doing the job you want. Use the word clouds to identify the top fifty words to include in your résumé, profile, and headline.
– Build Relationships, Not Just Followers. Balance your network. First, seek out senior industry leaders, colleagues, and recruiters who position you for the future. Align half of your posts, networks, groups, and connections to advance your career and position you as a thought leader. Build strong outside networks and relationships, to develop your promotional skills. As stated in the book How Women Rise, top leadership roles tend to focus more on your potential for the next level, rather your current position. Finally, align the other half of your online activities with your current industry, company, and team.
Here’s a quick check to see if you have the 50/50 balance correct. Look at the LinkedIn profiles listed to the right side of your profile. For many of us, this list contains our current or previous coworkers, alumni, or people with positions similar to the job we currently hold, not the role we want. This is a good barometer for achieving balance with your LinkedIn profile. An algorithm analyzes the current composition of your LinkedIn network to suggest the right-side profiles. You have reached the 50/50 balance when the right side contains names of people with your future titles.
– Invite People to Connect: Always include a personal message when inviting someone to connect. Keep your message short, sweet, and simple. Remember the five Ws . See TheMuse.com for sample networking messages. Delete requests to connect after ninety days of no response.
A social Media presence is a necessity, and staying in your comfort zone will lead to extinction. One final word “self”… the only person that ever manages your career is yourself. If you don’t take the initiative no one else will. Take the first step.
Here’s to selling Mastery.
Head of Education and Growth, Sistas In Sales
Executive Coach/Managing Partner, CGI
Cherilynn Castleman, Executive Coach/Sales Trainer, has been a sales executive for 20+ years. With a natural talent for teaching and a drive to sell, Cherilynn uses her skills to coach and train other executives and sales professionals.
“The next time your stomach flips with fear, don’t deny it by acting like you are just fine. Tell the truth.”- Iyanla Vanzant
Iyanla Vanzant is an American inspirational speaker, lawyer, New Thought spiritual teacher, author, life coach, and television personality.
Get In Touch
- Career Advancement
- Interpersonal Ease
- Living In Balance
- Masterful Selling
- Social Selling
- Value Story
A Coaching engagement can help you get results.
Make yourself a priority and make coaching a critical component of your overall success strategy. Begin your sales coaching journey today. See if we’re a good fit to work together
Learn more about Executive and Professional Coaching with Cherilynn Castleman