Personal Branding: Can you use LinkedIn to win new business?

February 2, 2022 Deimante Lideikyte

It is no secret that social media has become a route to escapism and is an ever-growing platform where we ‘showcase’ our best selves and living experiences. However, how far is too far? Our identity and the way in which we present ourselves is always in question. Do we need to be our true authentic self? How honest is too honest?

Social media is a highly influential place – it is very easy to get lost in the noise of trends and unrealistic expectations. Often leaving you questioning yourself and losing track of the ‘real’ you. Social platforms enable identity expression, exploration and experimentation. LinkedIn is no exception.

Unless you have been living under a rock you have probably heard about LinkedIn. It is one of the largest business networking platforms known to the digital world, helping professionals connect and build on their personal brand. But why is it so important?

There is no simple answer. This all depends on your needs and desires. However, what we can tell you is that LinkedIn has opened doors to incredible opportunities and networks to over 500 million users worldwide.

Using LinkedIn gives you the ability to create a professional profile, connect with like-minded individuals, build a network for new opportunities and grow your personal brand. Many individuals think that LinkedIn is only for people who are looking for a job, but it is so much more than that.

Marketing of the self on LinkedIn

Here comes the tricky part…your personal branding. The idea of actively posting on LinkedIn for all your connections to see can be daunting. It is not everyday you will expose yourself, your thoughts and opinions to thousands of (sometimes very opinionated) users. But, as scary as it may seem, building your personal brand can help you grow both personally and professionally. As they say, you never know who’s listening: before you know it, you could be talking to someone who could be helping you invest in your future self.

The list of reasons why you should be building a personal brand on LinkedIn is endless, so we won’t bore you. Besides the great opportunities and amazing connections, it can help you and your business too! Whilst advertising yourself, your strengths, accomplishments and thought-provoking opinions may take some finessing, presenting your best self can help you secure some new clients.

Building your personal brand…

When exploring your personal brand, ask yourself: ‘Do I know my career identity?’. Your job title is not as much of a concern here, it is more about your unique views and representation of yourself that you would like to advertise to the LinkedIn world. But do not worry, if you haven’t got an answer, you’re definitely not alone.

A personal brand can often get lost in translation. It is a way to communicate your professional identity (as well as aspects of your personality) to your potential clients and to position yourself as a thought leader in your industry. This allows you to build up their distinct associations of you and your work.

Naturally, this comes with a lot of pressure and uncertainty. Many individuals can be left worried and concerned about their image on social media – especially on LinkedIn when their professional public perception is on the line. A lot of social media users are often confronted by their own mind – what we often refer to as ‘overthinking’ influences people negatively. Psychologically, people always strive for a sense of belonging and approval from their friends, family and peers. Therefore, when sharing their vulnerabilities, experiences and achievements, people are often faced with doubt and worry as to ‘what will others think’.

The fear of the unknown

The fear of judgment often leaves us filtering what we share within the digital world – striving to only share the highlights. However, there is a fine line between expressing the best form of yourself vs creating a brand new online persona of what you THINK would be approved by others.

Like with many social media users, you often view their profiles and think to yourself ‘wow, surely this is too good to be true’ and in reality, it probably is. With people only sharing the highs or uploading content based on what’s ‘cool’, social media becomes a showcase of unattainable lives. This brings with it a wealth of unhealthy comparisons but also leads many to creating an online persona that will get them the most likes. However, if you really think about it, likes for a post that does not actually reflect your true self are probably less meaningful than likes on a post that are genuine and honest.

Personal branding = business growth

Let’s be realistic for a second, most of your audience will not turn into potential buyers. Thus, your business branding and marketing only targets a small minority of individuals, completely missing out on a much larger customer base. With a growing personal brand, you will quickly realise that as your reach grows, so does the building of authentic relationships. People will connect with you more personally, they will relate to your stories and celebrate your achievements. In business, people invest in people and so the more honest and open you are, the more authentic your connections will be – driving great results both professionally and personally.

So, to avoid getting lost in the noise of social media, we suggest: just be yourself. Find what you’re passionate about and share it with the world. It may seem like a lot of pressure, especially on channels like LinkedIn where you can find yourself being more vulnerable and expressive of your thoughts and feelings. But if you think about it, we’re all in the same boat. We encourage you to make your first post today and be sure to tag us – we can’t wait to hear what you have to say!

Contact Clockwise Marketing today to explore your branding and how we can help take your personal branding to the next level.