For many companies, it isn’t enough to simply have a brand presence online. People will always see a brand account as just that—a brand, and not a real person. One of the best ways to close that distance is by promoting a spokesperson to represent the brand’s interests in a more human way.
If you own a small business, positioning yourself as the company expert is the easy choice. But in larger companies, the owner or CEO may not want to be the focus. In those cases, another member of staff with a solid online profile can act as the expert spokesperson for social media.
For example, if you are going to market your business on LinkedIn, you will need to either create or use an existing account for your spokesperson.
At first, it’s most effective to use just one spokesperson for a period of time before introducing more experts. With more people, you have more to manage, and you can get watered-down results. You can increase your expert base as your skills and social media acumen grow.
Of course, even building an audience for one representative is easier said than done. Social media is, well… saturated to say the least. If you’re trying to grow a following, then you need to provide genuine value. But before anyone will listen to what you have to say, you need to build a sense of trust with your audience.
You will need to compile a comprehensive list of your expertise. Having the items below at the ready is crucial to building your credibility as an expert. These also will help you build strong social media profiles on numerous sites, so this is very important information:
- Professional biography (200-300 words tops)
- Current professional contact information (including phone, address, email, websites, social media links)
- Up-to-date resume or CV (including higher education, past jobs, projects, hobbies and interests)
- Videos or pictures of your presentations, awards, training
- Organization memberships (e.g., Business Networking International, American Marketing Academy)
- Top 20 professional skills
- Honors and awards
- Publications you have written for or are featured in (and PDFs/documents of the content)
- Languages spoken
- Certifications, specialty courses, and test scores
- Volunteer work or causes that you support
- Marketing collateral (brochures, sales sheets, postcards, event sheets)
It looks a big, scary list, right? In reality, once you get it done, all you have to do is dip back in once in a while to make updates or add new items. Your expert profile information is most useful on LinkedIn, but it will also serve you well on any social media site where you or your spokesperson will be posting.
Once you get this set up, you’ll be on your way to building credibility and growing your audience. From there, you can use that platform to connect with more people to promote your business one-on-one. It may seem like a lot of work, but it’s a great way to generate more high-quality leads than a brand page alone.