Despite the vast number of studies and statistics showing that social media has a positive impact on building a brand, many business people still don’t really know what social media can do for them or how to best use it to build their personal and business brands. In general, there are three specific ways that almost everyone can benefit from social media.
The first is enhanced brand recognition and thought leadership.
It’s simple, the more frequently you show up on social media, the greater your brand exposure, and the more recognizable and credible you and your business become. For example, I received a call from a writer at fastcompany.com who was working on a piece about personal branding. When I asked him where he found me, he said he Googled the term and a whole slew of my content, including blog posts, articles, videos, tweets, and Facebook posts, et cetera, consistently came up. Seeing my name one time on personal and business branding put me on his radar, seeing my name dozens of times made me more of a thought leader. Once the piece was published, I gained several new clients as a result of his blog post.
The second benefit is increased trust through leveraged
Let’s say a major blogger in your industry tweets a post you have written or promotes you on their Facebook page. What this says about your brand is that they have enough trust in your expertise to put their brand behind yours. That’s leveraged credibility, and it helps to create the kind of trust necessary for personal brand success. One study from Mext Consulting showed that if consumers trust a brand, 83% will recommend it, 82% will use its products and services frequently, and 78% will look to it first for the thing they want.
The third social media marketing benefit for your brand is that it gives you a competitive advantage
Let’s say a potential customer has narrowed the field down to you and one competitor. If you have an active and quality social media presence, be it a blog, Pinterest, LinkedIn, or other, and your competitor has a weak social media presence, which brand do you think is going to catch their attention, and the answer is the one with the more engaged social media. While this might not be the only criteria that will factor into their choice, we know that social media does influence customer’s decision making.
One study from the ODM Group showed that 74% of consumers rely on social networks to guide purchase decisions. While spiffy social media is notan if you build it they will come proposition, it is one of the ways that you can immediately impact your personal brand. Understanding how you personally would benefit from participating in social media and coming up with a strategy for how to make the most of it is key to building you personal brand.