This was written back in November 2007, and elegantly sat in my Drafts folder. I actually have quite a few items that somewhat relate to current ideals, and will work on cleaning these up to post as well. This one discusses the benefits to essentially creating your “personal brand in the digital space”.
Lifecasting. Its the new in thing to do. Not only for your life, but also for your career. The more information you can get out online about what you are all about, the better chance your potential employers will find about your specialties and how into your career you really are. Here are some simple tips on how to get started on your Lifecasting journey.
Creating a strong identity – Get a domain name
This is the basis for your personal brand. Consider this your hub of activity. This is the place that will hold everything about you. Your online resume, interests, goals, life updates and contact information. Domain names are so cheap, and its definitely worth the $9/yr from GoDaddy to be the professional player you are.
Let the people hear your voice – Engage in the community
If you have special or professional interests in Apple computers, or dog breeds, get involved in the communities discussions. Target the top sites that serve the best content, and get your voice heard. Contribute valuable discussions to website comments and forum discussions. This will let people know that you know your stuff. Either that, or that you are an active contributor in your community.
Have valuable things to say – and say them
Start up a blog and voice your knowledge on the topic that interests you, or that you specialize in. You can be as simple or complex as you want. A few lines here and there, or an essay a week. Use your blog platform to not only post an introduction to yourself and what you specialize in, but to post your research, training and daily discoveries that relate to your field. Of course you can throw in some goofy stuff, but remember that potential employers can also check the space out. The personal blog is just the beginning, and the most important aspect of your lifestream campaign. There are also tools like twitter and pownce that can keep you in touch with industry friends and contacts through short messages. This is a great way to meet and follow like minded individuals in the same field. And if you have something valuable to say, they may keep an eye on what you have to say as well.
Socially speaking, and speaking socially
The social network. With the growth rate of facebook this year, more people are using it as not only a way to interact with close friends, but as a way to interact with business associates and people in the same field. Another strictly business network is LinkedIn. This can be viewed as your online resume and work environment. Past and present work experience and specialties are listed out and made available to new business contacts. Its a great place to again interact, ask questions and grab feedback from industry people that you can make valuable connections with. Lastly, there are tools like Google reader, delicious, and digg that one can use to mark the most important news to them, and have it made readily available to anyone who is interested in keeping tabs on what information you deem valuable.
Now let’s pull it all in together
The lifestream portal is a little valuable piece of your puzzle that can bring all of your information together, so that any followers or interested people can keep tabs on what you have to add. It can be as simple, or as complex as you want. If you have a blog style site, a few lines of code additions can drop in your twitter stream, linkedin profile, facebook profile, delicious links, an IM tool, google reader feeds.No sense in listing out every online application you have ever signed up for. Just list the ones you are active in, and stay active in them. A key to being able to be found easily is to stay consistent. Use the same ID Or user name across all applications. This way people know exactly who they are reading on different platforms they might frequent.The lifestream can be your best friend, or worst enemy. Keep it up to date with valuable content and make a contribution to the conversation and it will adequately portray who you are. Drop nothing into it, and people will ignore you, and potential employers will not be able to paint the full picture of what you can offer their organization. But most of all have fun, and use it as a learning tool to gain as much information as you can about the topics that interest you the most.