What to Do When Your Company Pushes Back on You Building Your Personal Brand — With Lorraine K. Lee

January 23, 2024
Anonymous Marketer | Content Marketing | Marketing Strategy

Episode Summary

In this insightful episode of The Anonymous Marketer, host Kirsti Lang dives into the intricacies of personal branding on social media in a corporate setting with guest Lorraine K. Lee from RISE Learning Solutions. Lorraine, a LinkedIn aficionado, shares her journey and the impact of a robust online presence on her career.

The conversation pivots to the challenges faced when corporate boundaries clash with personal branding efforts. Lorraine advises on navigating these waters, emphasizing transparency with employers and the importance of a disclaimer in posts to differentiate personal opinions from company stances.

Furthermore, the episode touches on the mutual benefits of employee advocacy on platforms like LinkedIn. Lorraine highlights how personal branding not only elevates individual profiles but also enhances corporate visibility and credibility. The discussion culminates in practical tips for listeners eager to build their own brands, underscoring the value of starting small and maintaining authenticity.

Featured Guest

Name: Lorraine K. Lee
What she does: Founder, Keynote Speaker, Trainer
Company: RISE Learning Solutions
Noteworthy: Lorraine K. Lee, a keynote speaker, virtual trainer, LinkedIn Learning instructor, and Stanford Continuing Education course instructor​​.

Key Insights

The Importance of a Strong Online Presence

Lorraine K. Lee emphasizes the criticality of having an online presence in today’s digital world. She points out that, often, the first or only impression people get is through online platforms. Specifically, she highlights LinkedIn as a key component of this presence, referring to it as an “online landing page.” This insight underscores the necessity for professionals to actively manage and curate their online personas to create impactful first impressions and maintain relevance in their fields​​.

Empowering Employee Advocacy on LinkedIn

Lee discusses her conversation with a former Netflix marketing executive about the benefits of employee advocacy on LinkedIn. She suggests that many companies could improve by training their communications teams to guide employees on what’s appropriate to post. This approach helps prevent fear-based restrictions and fosters a more informed and structured way for employees to engage online without “going rogue.” This insight highlights the potential of employee advocacy in enhancing a company’s brand and the importance of clear guidelines to harness this potential effectively​​.

Value-Driven Social Media Engagement

In her discussion, Lee advises focusing on providing value to followers rather than just announcing personal achievements. She encourages sharing learnings and experiences that others can benefit from, as this approach not only aids in overcoming personal hurdles in self-promotion but also fosters a culture of helpfulness and service on the platform. This insight is pivotal for those hesitant to engage on platforms like LinkedIn, emphasizing the importance of value-driven content over self-centered postings​​.

Episode Highlights

Organic Brand Awareness Through Employee Advocacy

Lorraine K. Lee highlights the effectiveness of organic brand awareness generated through employee advocacy. She shares her experience of being invited to speak at events, where not only her expertise was showcased but also the company she worked for gained visibility. Lee explains how this approach not only builds the personal brand of the employee but also elevates the company’s profile. The integration of personal and company branding in such public forums creates a symbiotic relationship, benefiting both the individual and the organization.

“So when your employees are posting people see oh okay they work at this company. What is this company? You learn more about it. […] So my company was getting mentioned on promotional images in the event itself.”​​

Old School vs. New Age LinkedIn Approach

Lorraine K. Lee discusses the challenges of convincing traditional-minded bosses about the modern ways of using LinkedIn. She emphasizes the importance of being helpful and providing useful content on LinkedIn, which not only grows personal audiences but also enhances company visibility. Lee suggests explaining one’s goals to the boss as a way to bridge the gap between old and new approaches to professional social media use.

“It sounds like this boss has a more old school mentality for what should be posted on LinkedIn. […] And by providing that useful content you’re going to grow your audience. You’re going to grow visibility for the company.”​​

Optimizing LinkedIn Profiles

In this segment, Lorraine Lee offers practical advice on how to optimize LinkedIn profiles. She underscores the importance of a complete and engaging profile, suggesting the use of all 220 characters in the headline for keywords and a unique value proposition. Lee highlights the significance of the profile’s top third, as it’s the first thing people see, and advises on making it strong and compelling.

“Making sure that the top one third of your profile is complete that’s the first thing people see. You really want to stick to that and make sure that that is really strong.”​​

Overcoming Hesitation in Personal Branding

Addressing the apprehension many feel about personal branding on LinkedIn, Lorraine Lee encourages taking small steps, starting with the profile. She reassures listeners that everyone is learning and that the fear of judgment should not hold one back from building their online presence.

“Just start with the profile and then build from there and um just know that you know no one is judging you and it’s all we’re all learning.”​​

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