12 Most Creative Ways to Promote Your Professional Brand—Without Social Media

12 Most Creative Ways to Promote Your Professional Brand—Without Social Media

 

You don’t have to be a marketer to master the art of getting people to know—and care—about your brand.
You have more resources than you think. And while social media can do a lot to get your name out there, there’s a whole world of promotional opportunities beyond Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

 

1. Join local networking groups

Be social. The social you were before you could hop online and ‘like’ your friend’s new haircut. Give people the opportunity to get to know you in person. Become a regular at networking events related to your industry.

2. Think outside the box

Attend events and join groups that aren’t necessarily within your area of expertise. Why? You’ll expand your knowledge and have a leg up on the competition. If you’re a social media consultant, try attending a health care conference. There could be an entire population of people interested in your services that you hadn’t considered before.

3. Ask your friends

Your network is bigger than you think. Don’t be afraid to ask friends if they know people with whom they think you should connect. They are your friends, right?

4. Sponsor events

Add a human element to your business. Sponsor a charity event. Be sure to make it about the charity, not about promoting your brand. People should remember you for the right reasons, not as a shameless sales person.

5. Get published

These days, it’s easier than ever. Reach out to the people you’ve met at networking events—or know through online networking—that have blogs or publications and ask them if you can write a guest post. But be sure the post actually pertains to what they do—don’t just blatantly promote your brand or product.

6. Take an improv class

Being able to give a stellar presentation is a great skill. An even better skill—one could argue—is the ability to speak eloquently when under pressure or when taken by surprise. When networking and chatting with clients and consumers, you need to be ready to address questions and concerns in a way that will bolster your brand, rather than leaving you stumped or fumbling through “umms” and “uhhs.”

7. Take a writing class

You’re probably not as good a writer as you think you are. I mean this in the nicest of ways—there’s always more to learn. If your website and social media posts aren’t well-written, people won’t take you seriously.

8. Follow industry trends

Find out what the hot trends are and figure out how your brand can apply them. But make sure the trends are relevant to the way you want to expose your brand.

9. Find speaking opportunities

They don’t have to be directly related to your industry. For example, join groups that cater to young pros and share networking tips.

10. Try random giveaways

This is a great way to expose potential customers to your brand. Perhaps they haven’t purchased your product or service because they aren’t sure if it’s worth it. Reach out to people at networking events, on social media or via email to see if they’d like to try your product or service for free. Remember to research people before reaching out to them to determine if it makes sense to target them.

11. Have an opinion

The goal is to get your name out there. Respond to HARO (Help a Reporter Out) queries, even if they aren’t related to your business or industry. But don’t pass up an industry-related opportunity, either! You could be quoted in local newspapers or publications, exposing you and your company to more people.

12. Find ways to get recognized

For example, if you’re looking for an opportunity to showcase your work, look for industry influencers who host annual awards for your specific industry. Submit your work and get recognized!
Opportunities are everywhere–find them!

Someone once told me that to get people to pay attention to you, you have to “make yourself known.” How do you resolve to get your name out there this year?

 

Featured image licensed via Stock.Xchng.

Sam Hosenkamp

Sam Hosenkamp is Ragan Communications’ social media director. She also contributes posts on social media, fitness, networking and more to PR Daily, Ragan.com, Health Care Communication News and other Ragan publications. Additionally, she supports the conference and webinar division by promoting through social media. Her interests include social media marketing, fitness, best practices in communications and psychology.

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9 comments
wendyrhernandez
wendyrhernandez

Great suggestions, Sam! I've been toying with the idea of an Improv class; my husband is currently taking his third one, and I see the potential for something like that to help me personally and professionally. Not only that, but I think it would be fun!


I also like the idea of sponsoring an event. Hmmmm.....think, think, think!!


Thanks you!

Kim Phillips
Kim Phillips

Another idea: teach a class in the industry.

dbvickery
dbvickery

I've been trying a few of these, Sam. I am working on getting better at asking friends. I also enjoyed a few speaking opportunities in 2011, so I hope to have more shots at speaking and guest posting in 2012.

It is easy to get swallowed up by networking organizations. Especially if they find out you are decent at social media! They want you to join their boards and start growing their brand. Only so much time in a day!

AmyMccTobin
AmyMccTobin

There is life without Social Media?? I jest of course. Many of us marketers forget that lots of businesses still do a lot 'the old fashioned way.'

Kim Phillips
Kim Phillips

Excellent post. I would add one: volunteer. Working on an industry group project is a great way to get out there.

SamHosenkamp
SamHosenkamp

@dbvickery Hope they help! Glad you're finding success with speaking opportunities and hey, people wanting you to speak on their boards and grow their brands isn't the worst thing that could happen! But I know, only so many hours ;)

SamHosenkamp
SamHosenkamp

@AmyMccTobin Sometimes I forget there is, too! I think it's about creating a good mix of social media promotion and 'old fashioned' promotion. Covers everything!

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