Find Your Inner Gaga

Last Monday, I was sitting in the living room with my roommate waiting to watch one of our crazy addictions, The Bachelor. With my computer in my lap, I pulled up my Twitter account and decided to tweet something about the show (obsessive – I know). I was mid-tweet when my roommate uttered the words forbidden by social media fanatics: “I just never know what to tweet about.” As if the first comment wasn’t bad enough, it was her second comment that really made my head spin: “I’m just not interesting enough.” Not interesting enough? Why do people think only celebrities hold social media status when we’re all entitled to our own online presence? What makes people interesting on the Web?

Interesting enough?

Okay, so nobody says we have to give a Lady Gaga VMA performance to be considered interesting, but as PR practitioners it is essential we build our own personal brand. Today’s digital world makes networking easier, faster and more personal. With the click of a mouse, you can communicate with other PR practitioners, access endless possibilities and start building your career. So how do you get yourself noticed in cyberspace?

The first step to personal branding is discovering your identity. As social media users, it is our job to express our individuality and promote it to an audience. The most successful branders are those who take time to answer the question: “How do I want to be perceived?” People should get a sense of your personality and character when they view your profile. They should also be able to see what you’re passionate about, achievements you’ve made and qualities you have to offer the industry. Post things you find interesting. Share pictures of the places you’ve been. Upload videos that show you getting involved. Allow your profile to be your own digital billboard on which you can showcase your personality and professionalism.

After you have developed your identity, decide how to create your brand. Social media innovators are constantly creating new platforms and applications to facilitate networking. The days of using Facebook to connect with friends and upload silly pictures are over. Start taking advantage of these media tools to promote your brand. Think of your profile or web site as a digital resume. Everything from your picture, bio and posts should be a complete representation of you.

The most important step to building your online presence is interaction. In everyday life, you don’t sit around talking to yourself – you communicate. Start asking questions, giving advice and sharing your ideas. People want to know what you have to say. Use your profile as a way to create dialogue between you and your audience.

The more updated and integrated your profile is, the more interesting you will be to your audience. So tap into your inner “Gaga” and start your personal brand. After all, the key to keeping an online presence is being yourself, no matter how “uninteresting” you might think you are.

by Kassandra Hannay

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7 Comments

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7 responses to “Find Your Inner Gaga

  1. Donna hannay

    This article is very interesting. It allows people, like me that have no idea how to use twitter, etc. to have a better understanding of the purpose and curious enough to try it.

    Thanks

  2. That’s a BRILLIANT post. Just found you by accident as I wrote an article myself about ‘what can brands learn from LAdy Gaga’! Keep up the great writing – I’ll be sure to follow your posts. x
    http://jeremywaite.wordpress.com/2010/02/14/why-is-lady-gaga-not-your-average-pop-star/

  3. Bentley

    Wow! You have opened my eyes to the world of twitter. I think I’m going to get one.

  4. Elizabeth Howell

    I am very in tune with your idea of using social media outlets, such as Facebook, to create one’s own personal brand. I was evaluating my Facebook profile recently, when I discovered that my own brand was highly representative of my former high school life rather than the job seeking college student I am today. I quickly blushed at the thought of someone I only kept in touch with through Facebook or a potential employer assessing my entire persona based on the interests and favorite artists I listed four years ago.

    This goes to show that it is important to constantly be updating the images of our selves we project through the web. In some instances information we post on social media sites is all that those who are trying to get to know us or keep up with us have to go by, and I am confident that I no longer want to be known as the Elizabeth who enjoys hanging out with friends and going to the movies.

  5. Megan Cotton

    Very interesting post, for a long time I was in denial about the idea of using Facebook to market yourself to employers. To me it was just a way to stay connected to friends and of course to “stalk” people I haven’t talked to in years. I knew companies would search through Facebook to find out more about you but I decided I would just make sure my profile and pictures locked, so that they were only visible to my friends.
    After an internship this summer though, I found myself “friends” with my co-workers and bosses and my account was used to create our organization’s Facebook page. So now my once very private profile can be easily found and seen by those that I had wanted to keep out.
    Because of this I’ve been considering having two Facebooks. One would be for potential employers and co-workers. I would use it to post job and educational experiences. Information about myself and a few pictures. The second would be under a different name. I would use it just for my friends and all those silly Facebook applications I just can’t help but add.

  6. Mollie Dunn

    I am amazed at how many ways social networking Web sites are used today. The day I first got a Facebook in high school seems so distant. I agree that “the days of using Facebook to connect with friends and upload silly pictures are over.” Though I still use Facebook for fun and to communicate with friends, I feel like today using Facebook is like posting a resume. I am about to graduate from college and begin working in the “real world.” I am much more cautious about what I post and let be posted on my wall. Also, I have made sure to make my Facebook private. You never know who is looking! I have yet to join the Twitter train, but I am not opposed to starting an account because I think it’s important in today’s world to get your name out there. This has inspired me to start an account!

  7. Before I had to tweet for class I thought that I would never have a twitter account, but now that I have one more and more people have started to follow me and I have actually enjoyed tweeting. At first I really had no idea what I was going to tweet about but once I got the hang of it I started tweeting more and more. I think twitter is a fun way to communicate with friends and be updated on the latest celebrity whereabouts.

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