People can’t come knocking if they don’t see a door.

by | Jun 13, 2024 | Business Development for Advisories, Career Planning, LinkedIn, Personal Brand

“Build it and they will come.”  Seriously?

I’ve always disapproved of this saying, not only because it’s the worst business advice ever (a close second being ‘It doesn’t matter if no-one gets it, as long as YOU love it!’)…

…but also because it gives new entrepreneurs false hope, and career professionals the excuse to wait around and hope to be noticed, instead of clearly communicating what they want and why they should get it.

When it comes to your personal brand, the plan works if you work it.

And the trick people miss is that there IS a plan, beyond the initial work to clarify your brand, and it takes consistent and continual effort to grow your brand by following that plan.

It’s like building a new website but not telling anyone it’s there (through social media, listings, word of mouth etc.). People get so excited about the ‘launch’ of their shiny new website but forget to direct traffic to it, then wonder why they hear crickets. Remember just how BIG the internet is?? No-one knows your little website is there.

To some extent, it’s the same with your LinkedIn profile. A client asked recently whether we needed to change the content of his profile because since we set up his personal brand positioning and optimised his LinkedIn page a year ago, interest had waned. What he forgot in the busyness of his demanding role and everyday life, is that we also set up an ongoing communication plan to keep his target audience finding him on LinkedIn. Now, actioning this plan has become his priority.

Like this client, I work with a lot of senior professionals and businesspeople who don’t need a whole lot of new opportunities, they just want to direct more specific ones. Some of them are also very good at going out and finding those opportunities, making the ask. But all of them say they would like some of the best opportunities to simply find them.

The best plan is a combination of both these approaches. And in order to achieve the bit where they find you, they need to know you are there in the first place – and they need to be reminded.

Your personal brand – in other words, standing out for a specific reason to the right people and then staying on their radar – is not a one-and-done. First set it up with a clear message about who you are and what you bring, and then follow a simple but consistent plan to keep that message front and centre.