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Eight Elements of a Compelling Social Media Profile

You know that if you want to elevate your name and business, using social media is the way to do it today. However, if you really want it to make a difference without wasting your time and effort, it’s important to understand how to create a compelling social media profile. Here are eight key elements to include.

1. An Interesting Picture of Your Face – If you want people to trust you, they need to see your eyes and face. The more centered and easier it is for your viewers to see your face, the more likely they are to find you interesting and trustworthy.

2. A Telling Display Name – Your display name depends on the platform. In some cases, just using your own name is the very best way to use the “display name” feature. After all, you want people to know you as you. However, if you want to be known by a certain name or handle or persona, that’s okay too. For instance, TaxMama may use her name, Eva Rosenberg, EA, or her handle and you know who it is.

3. A Keyword-Rich Username and URL – This is super-important because you don’t want the URL to be random. The URL needs to have keywords and your username listed in a way that helps people find you.

4. Relevant Links – Within your profile (depending on the system), you need to add links to the information about you that you want your viewers to know. It might be links to your content, to your portfolio, or when allowed, groups and products you are promoting.

5. A Short but Audience-Centered Bio – When you write your bio (or any “about me”) information, it’s important to think of yourself in the third person and describe yourself for your audience in a way that your audience will relate to. Remember – it’s all about them and what’s in it for them, even when it’s about you.

6. A Little Extra Info about You and Your Interests – If you really want to become a real person in the minds of the people who view your profile and read your content, it’s important to also offer to them a little extra information about your interests and hobbies in a way that helps them connect to you on a human level.

7. A Background or Cover Image That Draws Your Audience – The background image that you share can offer further information about you and how to contact you outside of the platform you’re using.

8. Updated, Relevant, and Consistent Activity – Even though this is not about your profile data exactly, it is important to ensure that your profile on the platform is viewed by the people you want it to be viewed by. Make sure you put consistent, relevant content up on your profile on a regular basis.

Start with these fixes to your profiles and then ensure that you tweak them slightly for each platform to ensure that your vibe matches the vibe of that network. For example, LinkedIn is a more buttoned-up business version of Facebook or Twitter. And Facebook and Twitter are also very different from each other.

If you work on ensuring your profile speaks to your audience and gives them the right feeling, they’ll be sure to follow you.

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Eight Tips on Dealing with PR Disasters

Eight Tips on Dealing with PR Disasters

One of the problems that most small business owners fear is a public relations nightmare. Sadly, this can happen to almost any business owner who is in the public eye in some way. You never know when a comment will go viral – and worse, when it will be misunderstood in some way. If you ever find yourself dealing with a PR disaster, you’ll want to try to implement these tips.

1. Don’t Ignore the Situation

You cannot avoid bad situations. If something is harming your businesses or your reputation, you need to confront it. Even if it’s true and you’re ashamed, you can often overcome the problem by being open and honest and then working to fix the problem. If it’s not true, you will only look guilty if you don’t get ahead of the story.

2. Don’t Think That Your Reputation Will Save You

Even if up until now you’ve had a spotless reputation, a particular type of PR situation can overshadow your reputation – even if it’s false. The only way to fix someone’s erroneous perception is to tackle it head on in the bright light of day.

3. Don’t Wait until the Situation Has Exploded to Deal with It

If you already know something might come out to the public that you don’t want to, don’t wait. It’s not going to help anyone. Do what you can to mitigate any situation before it explodes. If you didn’t know about it and it’s false, you still don’t want to let it keep proliferating without a response from you.

4. Be Sincere and Honest

If you did do something that was not true or it was misleading in some way (even if you didn’t realize it consciously), once your public finds out it’s time to come clean. So many social media stars could have kept their careers if only they had responded appropriately to being outed for their misleading information.

5. Don’t Avoid Communication with Affected Customers and Stakeholders

Remember that you have many stakeholders – from your partner, to your kids, to your employees, contractors, customers, and possibly investors depending on the type of business that you are running. Every one of them needs to have communication from you regarding the issue in the terms that they will understand best.

6. Document Everything

When something happens, if you document it, you can often avoid it happening again. Sometimes a breakdown in communication is responsible for the nightmare. Other times it’s trusting the wrong vendors. Whatever it is, if you go through what happened, you can identify the problems that got you here so that you can avoid them next time.

7. Plan for a Crisis

Take some time to consider the various issues that you can face in your line of work. Make a list of possibilities so that you can plan for any type of crisis that might happen. That way, you know what to do. Plus, by writing it down you will often avoid the problem to start with as you identify causes.

8. Don’t Act in a Defensive Manner

If you’re experiencing a PR disaster right now, try not to behave defensively. If you’ve done nothing wrong, explain yourself with confidence. If you have made a mistake, admit it openly and honestly without being angry that you were discovered or that someone pointed it out.

If you really want to avoid dealing with PR disasters, the best way to do it is to create a plan for your public persona for answering questions in a way that your audience responds positively to, while always being honest. If something goes down, take the blame for your poor communication and try to do better next time.

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