28 May How To Become More Visible In Your Industry
How To Become More Visible In Your Industry, Even If You Are New To It
I’ve said it many times, visibility brings credibility and that’s vital for anyone serious about their career. However, how can you be more visible in your industry even if you are starting at the bottom? It’s a tough call, but one that I hope I can encourage you to think about here.
For years I advised business owners on how to raise their profile. Much of the advice I give to my clients who want to be more visible in their industry is along the same lines. Here’s what I tell my clients who ask me how they can go about building their profile. A lot of this is aimed at building a profile within an industry, but much of it applies to raising your visibility within an organisation too.
1. Stay Authentic
This is not the time for faking it until you make it. It is unwise to pretend that you know more than you do, or that you are an expert if you are clearly not. If you are raising your profile, it is imperative that you do so from a place of authenticity. Honestly, no one will mind if you say you are new to this, but serious about finding out more and meeting the right people. In fact, they will probably applaud you for it. Pretending that you know more than you do, or you know people that you don’t, is going to trip you up. Work from where you are right now.
2. Ask For Help
Don’t be shy about asking for help. Reaching out to people from a place of genuine authenticity and asking for help is the key here. I find LinkedIn a great vehicle for this. Not everyone will have the time or inclination to help you, but some will. This help could be around getting some work experience, insider knowledge on a certain company, or just some plain advice on how to get on in your field. Ask and there is a chance it will be given. Don’t ask, and it won’t. The more people you ask, the more people you can create connections with. Once connected, stay connected (without stalking them!). This is how you can build your visibility.
3. Be seen
If you want to be more visible in your industry, it makes sense if people know your face. This could mean attending industry events, conferences etc. But it can also mean participating on Zoom calls about your industry, and making sure that all your social media profiles have photos that look like you, now. Let people remember your face.
If you are on a Zoom call make sure you contribute something to the conversation. Find good industry discussions on social media and get stuck in, even if it is to only say you agree. Look for blogs or publications that are asking for contributions, or offer yourself as a guest on a podcast. You may wonder what you can offer as a newcomer, but perhaps that is a unique angle in itself: a newcomer’s take on the industry.
5. Build Your Confidence
Being visible needs a certain amount of confidence. I’ve compiled some great advice on growing your confidence here. However, you may have to actively push yourself out of your comfort zone so it’s good to be aware of this. Congratulate or reward yourself when you do something scary and be prepared to do scary things a lot. Make a list of everything you could to raise your profile that scares you and work your way through it, one by one.
Volunteering is a great way to get known. This could be a company 5 k run for charity, or helping our your industry association. Board members are often there on an unpaid basis, so may value some additional help, even if it’s only to keep the website or social media up to date.
7. Build A Reputation
You don’t have to be an expert on a subject to create a blog, website, podcast or even YouTube channel around it. Interview people from your own viewpoint of curiosity. This way you make connections, build a following and become more visible, all at the same time.
8. Find a Sponsor
While a mentor will give you the benefit of their advice and experience, a sponsor is someone who will vouch for you, push you forward for positions, promotions and new projects. It may take a while to find one, but they are worth their weight in gold when you do.
9. Set Yourself A Goal
Raising your visibility is a bit vague, so be clear about how you will measure this. Is it going to be followers if you are going the social media route? Or perhaps it about who is in your network: quality rather than quantity.
10. Make It Sustainable
This is a long term, if not life long process, so make sure you keep it sustainable. Don’t tell everyone you are starting a YouTube channel interviewing teachers on the reality of the classroom if you only have time to make a video every six months. Decide what is doable and sustainable and stick to that.
I absolutely love helping people raise their profile and have a whole programme that can help you here.