Creating a Digital Footprint: My Journey

In the future, your digital footprint will carry far more weight than anything you might include on a resume.” -Chris Betcher

I was sitting in my kitchen with friends getting ready to leave for the Reno-Tahoe open when my phone alerted me that I had been mentioned in a tweet. I check it out; come to realize that a local business wrote a story about me and what I’ve been doing with the small businesses in Reno (through my blog).  Gah! The eCommerce Director for Dolan Automotive Group had been following my work via social media, and my attention was grabbed when they put together a blog about my work. I was honored, and reached out to them to meet face-to-face. Long story short… they end up offering me a position as an eMarketing Coordinator. I started on September 1st.

Pinch me. I’m floored. I am getting paid to do what I love, and I understand the value of that. I did a post back in June (Oh Hello Voice, There You Are: The Power of a Blog), which reflects on my discovery of the power of a blog and my social media journey. I felt the need to add a second part to my journey-as it has taken another turn in the past 30 days. This has nothing to do with self-promotion, I am not boasting, I don’t care if you have never liked or even read anything I have pushed out in the past-but I want to inspire others. I hope that as I continue to share my journey, I will inspire others to understand the importance of personal branding.  Also, I hope I will inspire others to take advantage of the infinite space on the World Wide Web and start blogging. It hasn’t just been a rewarding experience professionally, but personally.

I made a commitment in February to be completely transparent on Facebook, Twitter and through this WordPress site that they call a blog. This is what I did:

  • I cleaned up my Facebook page (would Nana be ok with seeing this? No. Delete)
  • I made my Facebook profile public
  • I made my Twitter public
  • I accepted anyone and everyone that added me
  • I developed content, which offered VALUE to others (this is the big one, this is a whole different blog post)
  • I shared my hobbies, passions, interests…I shared my life
  • I was transparent. What’s the big secret, anyway?
  • I blogged my heart out.

It was uncomfortable at first. So many people have a fear of opening up on the Internet (whether it be personally or for their business), and I completely understand. If you open up those gates, you are opening up a huge opportunity for people to: hate, judge, copy, spy, intrude, embarrass, harass… all that Jerry Springer shit. But, it’s controllable. Now that I have opened up myself to all of this criticism, I wonder why I didn’t do it years ago. I have made more friends, created more connections and have fully exploited my voice more in the past 7 months than I have in my whole 27 years on this earth.

My journey is really just getting started and I am thrilled to share my adventure as an eMarketing Coordinator for the Dolan Automotive Group. I am going to start sharing my experiences out in the “real world” as a social media professional, and my experience as the voice of a big business in a small town. I have figured out what works for me in terms of personal branding. Now, I get to step up to the plate and see how “human” we can make a business. Also, I will be sharing some of my blog posts from Dolan Auto Group’s blog, as I will be continuing my journey experiencing the Biggest Little City.

What’s your personal brand? How are you marketing yourself online? What does your digital footprint say about you? Don’t ignore it, because I promise you- others aren’t.

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