LinkedIn Brand Therapy: Your Guide to Standing OutAug 16, 2023
The biggest resistance business owners have when it comes to working with a personal branding agency on building a LinkedIn presence is their belief that they can do it themselves. And you know what? If this is your belief, then I am here to tell you that you are probably right.
Writing a social media post is no rocket science. It’s something most people can do. The question is though: do you?
When talking about this with clients, I give an example of physical fitness. We are all capable of going to the gym. The question is though: do we?
Many of us hire a personal trainer or a coach. Why? They give us discipline, consistency, and accountability. They turn a desire and a plan into reality.
This analogy perfectly encapsulates the essence of building a personal brand presence on LinkedIn.
And if you are among the business owners who are thinking, "I can create content myself," then I tend to agree. Yes, you likely can, much like anyone can go to the gym. But the real question is, do you? If not, why?
Before you think that I am here to guilt-trip you, let me make it clear that I am not. As an owner of a scaling global personal branding agency, I relate. Despite having an expertise to share and an ability to write, we lack the time, discipline, and sometimes the inspiration to churn out valuable content. Between running a business, meeting clients, and managing teams, where's the time to sit and pen down thoughts? And, even when writing is something we are capable of doing, it's hard to prioritize something that doesn't come naturally. Many of us possess the ability to write well, but it's not necessarily part of our core skill set. Incorporating a new task into a routine requires deliberate effort, and until it becomes a habit, it remains on the backburner.
Even the most disciplined of business owners, find the process cumbersome. When they carve out the time and finally sit down to write, they grapple with the common questions of, "Where do I begin? What should I write about?"
This is where a personal branding agency comes into play. Think of us as your personal branding trainer. We don't wave a magic wand, nor do we spin tales out of thin air. Our role is to work with you, delve into your expertise, and craft content that mirrors your thought leadership.
And that brings me to the next key point. If you hire an agency and feel that the content they are producing for you is lacking in depth, I have an unpleasant truth to share: the depth of ghostwritten content mirrors the depth provided by you, the client. No agency can (or should!) pull ground-breaking insights from a vacuum. It's your thought leadership that drives the richness and the depth of content.
You can outsource the writing, but you cannot outsource the thought leadership: it’s yours to own and to deepen. If we do it all for you, then we are losing the most important aspect of any personal brand: radical authenticity. If we are the thought leader and not you, then how will that bode outside of the digital wonderland of LinkedIn?
But so, if depth of insights is so dependent on you, then what does an agency offer? Here are the 3 key things we bring to the table in the process:
1. Insights Interview
One of the most daunting tasks you are likely facing is figuring out what to talk about. We solve this problem for you by holding a monthly insights interview with you. Through this process, your brand guide extracts gems of wisdom from you, converting them into valuable content.
2. Keeping you "on brand"
This is where working with Brand of a Leader is completely different from working with your internal marketing team or freelance ghostwriters. When we first begin our work together, we develop your brand guide that contains your brand positioning, brand perception, brand voice, and key content pillars. It's a tailored blueprint that captures the essence of your personal brand, ensuring that any content produced is consistent and authentic to your brand identity. Having this guide in place is essential before moving into content creation, as it helps us ensure that the messaging resonates genuinely with the target audience.
Another key difference is that internal marketing teams are trained on creating content that “converts” or content that sells something. They are trained on including catchy lines, calls to action, and links to downloads. This is effective in corporate marketing but comes off as inauthentic or off-putting when marketing your personal brand.
3. Content Creation and Posting
An agency saves you time by grabbing the insights from the interview, converting them into pieces of content, and publishing them for you. No more worrying about administrative tasks or "when" and "how" to post. We maintain the most vital component both for recognizability of your name and for any algorithm: consistency.
For many, working with a personal branding agency becomes an enlightening experience. Imagine having a monthly session focusing solely on refining and defining your thought leadership. Consider it a therapeutic exercise for your brand, with the additional perk of LinkedIn posts and articles.
Before we wrap up, let’s talk about everyone’s favorite elephant in the room: AI bots. With the rise of such tools as ChatGPT that can generate content, we are constantly asked about the future of ghostwriters.
We bring that conversation back to where I started this article. Even when ChatGPT elevates the quality of its output, it will naturally still be dependent on the quality and consistency of your input. What an agency brings to you is not the writing per se, but rather the discipline, the consistency, the structure, and, most importantly, the accountability.
So don’t ask yourself the question of whether you can write content. The answer is likely an obvious “yes”. Ask yourself whether you actually do it. And if your answer leans towards a "no," then perhaps it's time to consider some "branding therapy." Your personal brand is a reflection of your professional journey, your expertise, and your values. Like any valuable asset, it deserves time, attention, and dedication. If finding that time seems challenging, remember: there are "trainers" out there, ready to guide you every step of the way.
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