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12 Jan

Your Personal Brand Needs Polish and a Headshot

Digital and social media are driving today's online conversations and your social media profiles and websites are the first place anyone interested in doing business with you is going to look. Your social media profiles and website answer questions about who you are, what you offer and the style in which you do it. Your digital footprint and personal brand need to be polished and professional.

"The social media skills gap at work widens. With the explosion of workplace social networks like Slack (which recently saw more than 1 million users logged in at the same time) and the imminent launch of Facebook at Work, using social media in the office has gone from taboo to requirement. Businesses are incorporating social tools to streamline internal communications, to help sales staff reach customers, and, of course, for marketing and advertising. The problem is that front-line employees aren’t up to the challenge. Among 2,100 companies surveyed by Harvard Business Review, just 12 percent of those using social media feel they use it effectively. Even millennials brought up on social media are falling short: “Because somebody grows up being a social media native, it doesn’t make them an expert in using social media at work,” explains William Ward, professor of social media at Syracuse University." - Ryan Holmes, CEO of Hootsuite (Read the rest on Linked in)

When you've been out of the workforce for a while. the first place most people fall short are their social media skills. Luckily there are resources out there like General Assembly where you can take onsite and online classes and workshops to hone your skills or learn new ones. They teach classes like "A beginner's Guide to Email Marketing", "How to Succeed at Being a Digital Nomad" and "Instagram Marketing Workshop".  You can enroll in their full time programs as well and learn to code, do graphic design, build websites and become a digital media expert. In fact, General assembly will be hosting a "Creating Your Digital Footprint Skillshop" during MomFair LIVE!

Linked in is usually the first stop for anyone updating their career focused online presence. I've spent countless hours on Linked in looking at countless profiles and I can quickly tell you what makes great profile. A great profile starts with a great headshot. Headshots do not need to be expensive. You can find affordable resources in your city. We regularly partner with The Headshot Truck in Los Angeles (soon to be coming to a city near you) to bring their talented team to our events and make getting a headshot accessible and affordable. At MomFair LIVE! they will be shooting head shots all day at our event. You can purchase your headshot for $25 for one or $50 for three  when you download them from their website.

A professional header is a necessity. You can simply list you current job title or list the three skills you want to be recognized for. This is followed by a concise summary of your work history positioning yourself in that summary for the type of work you want to do or are currently doing (if you are self employed).  Listing your past employment should be brief. Many people just put dates, titles, and a link to the company they worked for. This is great for someone not actively looking for work. If you are actively looking you need to list the top 3-5 things you implemented, spearheaded or succeed with at that position.

Sam Ettus Linked in Example

If Linked in seems a little challenging for you, not to worry. You do not have to go it alone. We are hosting a "Winning Resumes Skillshop" at MomFair LIVE! with recruiter Barbara Ballard and digital media expert Christina Diener to help you craft the best profile and resume. Yes resume. Once you've tackled Linked in a basic resume you can adjust for every job you apply to is a must. The same principles for Linked in apply - eye catching header title, professional summary, highlight your skills and I always recommend adding your headshot and links to your digital footprint - send them to your Linked in page.

Many people are now creating personal websites just to showcase your personal brand and control how people are viewing your profile. This also gives you the opportunity to link to your other social media profiles...but only if the are work appropriate. If you are self employed or own a company, a personal website is not necessary as you will have an About or Team page on your business site. It very easy to set-up an affordable, simple website. The folks at Wix have created a template system that makes it easy for your to build a great looking digital presence in minutes. Hear from Vivian Hernandez of Wix at MomFair LIVE! as she hosts our "Wix Website Skillshop."

With the boom of social media for work in 2016 its going to become a necessity to know at least the basics. We will continue to bring you resources to advance your skills and put your best digital self forward.


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