Social media 101 for advisers

Not getting the traction you want from your online presence? Business consultant Michael Neaylon shares a few tips on how to use LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube to amplify your personal brand,



You might already be using social media to leverage your brand. If you’re not already I highly recommend you do.

But as with any branding, you’re better to go deep into two or three channels than dilute your efforts across multiple networks and not gain any real traction in any.

My personal top three for service professionals are LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube. Here’s why:

LinkedIn is a powerful search engine that connects you to a global community of professionals and has ever-increasing functions. One function we’ve begun using more and more in one of our businesses, Presentability, is a private (closed) forum. Just like hosting your own mastermind group can be good for your reputation as a serious player who’s also a seriously good connector, the same impression can be made in an online forum – as long as you give value.

If you have a blog, post it to the forum, or simply contribute articles and questions for your audience, further establishing your ‘go-to’ value, with the added benefit of being a connector. 

Twitter is more than just about tweeting about the incidental moments in your life or self-promotion.

One of the most underutilised aspects of Twitter is using it for research. By staying focused with who you follow and how ‘on-brand’ you are with what you post, you gain much more credibility here too.

Always leave enough room for your followers to have an opinion when they re-tweet (say 10-20 characters). If you’re re-tweeting an article yourself have an opinion of your own. That way you strengthen your status as a trusted adviser.

YouTube is owned by Google. That means it’s powered by the singularly most powerful search engine in the world. If you’re not already getting video content up, consider it. As a service professional we want to know about you. Personally, I’m a professional speaker, so for me it’s vital. However, even for clients who don’t speak for a living they gain so much more traction by allowing people in to see who they are and the passion behind what they do, not to mention their own personal style.

Helping clients with the content and coaching for their videos, I’ve seen common mistakes people make that do their brand more damage than good. Here are some simple, effective tips for you to avoid those mistakes in your videos:

  1. Start small. Perhaps even a slideshow with a voice over to begin with, then build up to longer videos.
  2. Be yourself. Don’t try to imitate anyone. Watch others for their skills or techniques, but don’t try and copy their style, especially if they’re a late-night infomercial host.
  3. If you’re really nervous in front of a camera, have a professional interview you, or invest in a video performance coach.

Stay On Brand With Your Social Media

Where many people fail to gain momentum in their social media is failing to have an authentic voice in the channels they choose.

If you’re new to social media, then play with it, keeping an eye on who follows you and the impact you have on the market. Also follow people in your industry who have many followers or connections and observe what they do, then infuse those practices with your own style, and most importantly, your own opinions.

I trust these tips and tools help you further elevate your personal brand. Used well your brand can bring you more business, less objections, greater referrals, more contacts and more of your ideal clients.