The Executive Assistant Guide to Personal Branding on Social Media
With Diana Brandl
What role does social media play in your professional life? Although many of us view social media as a leisurely way to pass the time and stay connected, the truth is, your brand on social media is a crucial leadership tool. Every one of us is a brand. As an executive assistant, you are the right-hand of your executive, so let’s dive into the best algorithms for making your brand worth following.
It’s vital that you optimize your social media presence so that you can stand-out as a leader and representative of your organization, and most importantly, a representative of yourself.
Diana Brandl is an international speaker, coach, and author located in Germany. She’s most well-known at ELS for her progressive discussions on artificial intelligence in the executive assistant career. Diana helps in uncovering how EAs can optimize their social media presence to thrive as a leader within their community.
Know the Difference
Understand the differences between platforms. What you share on Facebook will be very different from what you share on LinkedIn. Use Facebook as a platform to engage with your personal network. Even though, in general, Facebook won’t be used as a professional platform, ensure your communication and photos still fit your brand and are appropriate. Nowadays, it’s effortless to locate someone across platforms. Therefore, keep your Instagram and Twitter as clean as possible, too, only using the imagery and content that fits your image. Lastly, use LinkedIn as a platform to be your TRUE professional self. This is the platform to spend the most time optimizing.
Knowing Your Brand
With artificial intelligence entering the EA space, it’s becoming even more crucial for EAs to become fantastic storytellers. Brandl explains, “Digitization brings a lot of opportunities, but it still frightens many of the assistant community as we deal more and more with the question of disruption. Is our profession disruptive? For sure not but it is constantly evolving. Hence, we need to start telling our own stories with pride why the brand of an assistant is vital to any organization. If you wait for human resources to support you on that, more likely nothing is going to happen. We are in charge shaping the future of our industry.”
Through your branding on social media, weave a story of current projects you are working on and the accomplishments you’ve made. Add a personality to your role. “I really enjoy seeing more assistants step up and becoming louder; it’s one of the reasons why social media is so beneficial,” says Brandl. It’s crucial in building your image that you highlight the qualities that set you apart from the rest. Are you a great conversationalist and have phenomenal written communication skills? Well, that sets you apart from both artificial intelligence and human competition, and it worth noting somewhere on your profile.
“It’s important you know your brand. Secondly, it’s important for people to know the brand behind the person. When we talk about digitization, we have so many tools to help our brand shine. It’s a whole new world, and everyone can learn from each other.”
The key is to plan out how you want to be portrayed in the digital space and ensure your story is consistent with who you are as a professional. What story do you want to paint?
“Experts know how to use the right hashtags, but the first step is just getting out there and being visible,” Diana explains. This means having an active and filled out LinkedIn account, for starters.
Update your resume and your LinkedIn profile using these easy tips. Brandl recommends setting a calendar reminder, once a month, to allow yourself an hour or so to update your LinkedIn, if necessary. “The more you update it, the more content you bring, the better. Even if you’re not looking for a job, social media can help you find so many connections.” Visibility means checking in, responding to messages, sharing valuable content within the EA space, and interacting with others in your network.
Pro tip: join executive assistant groups in your city or state. There are plenty of networks out there to tap into for resources, job postings, advice sharing, and timely articles in the EA space. For example, our ELS group is called Executive Leadership Support Network in LinkedIn Groups and is an online community for EAs across the globe. Find your niche!
Quality over Quantity
When making connections on LinkedIn, it’s important that you value quality over quantity. Brandl explains, “Social media is a big step forward for bringing communities together. Even if you will never meet some people in person, it’s still an honor to make these crucial connections. Go to events. Go to trainings because you need to be shaking those hands. When people come together in a room, it really makes a difference.”
Take the connections you make in real life, and add them to your social community. When you go to “connect” on LinkedIn, add a personal message. Then, take the time to interact with people. Endorse others for their skills, share articles you admire and acknowledge others’ successes.
Over time, your connections will become more meaningful. Focus on building a community of like-minded individuals that fit your brand. Don’t merely connect with everyone.
By understanding the purpose of LinkedIn for your brand, you’re opening the door for optimization. Take the time to plan out your brand and convey consistency in your visibility across LinkedIn. As mentioned, be visible! Work on quality connections. Take these tips, get out there, and strut your stuff!
Are you looking to make more quality connections in real-life? Join the ELS experience in a city near you!