How I Got An Article Published on Forbes.

Two weeks ago, I had an article published on Forbes! When I received the email with the link to my piece, I couldn’t contain my excitement. I remember making a list last year of 100 things I want to do before I die and this was one of them. I couldn’t believe it happened before I’d imagined! Needless to say, I shared the post everywhere – my email list, social media networks – and with basically everyone I know.

The news was well received! This was one of the highlights of my writing career. A lot of people asked how I landed the opportunity so I decided to answer it in a post.

Here’s the story of how I got an article published on Forbes.

This may surprise you, but it happened in the most unexpected way. I was browsing my LinkedIn feed one day when a notification popped up. I mindlessly clicked on it then jumped out of my seat when I realized what it was about. A friend had recommended me under the status of an editor from Forbes. She was looking for millennial writers to contribute to their website and I was listed as a potential candidate. I immediately thanked my friend and affirmed my interest in the opportunity. Next, the editor reached out to me via email. She had actually checked out my website and found my contact information on there. I was over the moon.

What followed was a mini-interview where I had to craft a pitch and suggest some new posts. I didn’t hear from her until the following two weeks as she had to vet multiple writers. I was starting to get discouraged thinking there was a chance I’d get rejected. She eventually got back to me. They wanted to move forward with my piece.

And there it was! A few emails and a round of edits later, my article went live on Forbes! Although it happened unexpectedly, the steps I had previously taken led me to that moment. If it wasn’t for my work and my habit of showcasing it online, my friend would’ve probably never thought to recommend me. It may seem like no one’s watching when you share your work, but people do notice and this helps you stay top of mind when an opportunity comes up.

Whether you’re looking to take your writing career to the next level or grow your personal brand, you can apply my story to your particular situation. Here are the main takeaways:

Talk about your work online

Let people know what you do. Better yet, show them. Have a blog post, a cool graphic or an app you’ve worked on? Share it online! When people frequently see what you do, they will come to know you as an expert in your particular field.

Take care of your personal brand

Invest in your professional development by building a brand. You can think of it as your footprint. It tells the world the story of what you do and what you stand for. Entertain opportunities that allow you to expand your brand and reach new audiences. This can mean speaking at local events, contributing to different publications or being featured on podcasts. Be sure to always document your process along the way.

Check out

3 Ways to Build Your Personal Brand

4 Brilliant Ways to Brand Yourself Online

Leverage social media to build relationships

Just like you can make friends on Instagram, you can build authentic relationships with potential mentors, employers, business associates and colleagues. You just have to use each platform to its full potential. For example, don’t just passively scroll through your LinkedIn feed. Find new people to connect with and send them a message. Read about the news in your industry and repost relevant articles. Write a blog post that demonstrates your expertise. On Twitter, see what recruiters or people you admire are posting. Interact with them and eventually, ask them out for coffee.

You may not hear from everyone, but if someone takes the time to respond, be sure to follow up. A lot of relationships are left unbuilt from people not following up. So be sure to carry out the plan and take your connections offline. Your network is a crucial factor in your career development. Don’t neglect it.

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4 Brilliant Ways to Brand Yourself Online

As a consumer, I prefer buying from brands I personally feel connected to. Even if their products or services cost more, I’d rather invest in them. This is also true for the majority of millennials. In fact, a study by Elite Daily showed that we are the most brand-loyal generation.

Whether you’re a business owner, freelancer or regular employee, your personal brand is what sets you apart from others. It is what keeps people engaged and consuming from you. It is then crucial that it speaks for itself.

Over the past few months, I’ve worked on growing my personal brand and it’s led to major opportunities such as speaking engagements, consulting gigs, freelance work etc.

Here’s how to build a strong digital presence:

Be clear about what you do – This is especially hard when you’re a multipotentialite. By nature, we love to do many things. Be ready to articulate each one of them. Better yet, find what connects all your passions and speak to that. Are you a writer who can also produce videos and take great photos? Then you are a content creator who can effectively amplify voices. Figure out all the things you can do really well, but be specific about the core of your personal brand. What do you want people to know you as? What should they come to you for?

Pick a niche market – In a world where almost every market is saturated, choosing a niche is recommended. This doesn’t mean you will reach less people. Au contrary, you will reach more of the people you’re targeting. For example, a freelancer doesn’t need to do work for everyone. They would be spreading themselves too thin. They don’t need to have thirty clients either. They only have so much time! Choosing a subset of the market will help them effectively market themselves and score gigs.

Do you want to help small business owners build authority with blogging? Can you provide training and professional development for corporations? Narrowing down the audience who could use your expertise will give you a better sense of direction as you’ll know exactly where to look and who to approach.

Add value – Before you share anything online, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Is it aligned with what I stand for? Will it strengthen my brand?
  2. Is it valuable? Can someone use it to learn something and make a decision?
  3. Does it demonstrate my expertise?

The more you provide value, the more people are likely to engage with you. It will show a genuine commitment to helping others. You can add value in different ways (status updates, live webinars, courses, ebooks etc.) Be creative with the way you share your content and stay abreast of the platforms your audience will likely adopt.

Document your wins – Use social media to showcase your expertise and highlight your accomplishments. You need to show people what you can do. It’s the only way they will buy into it! Recorded one of your speaking engagements? Post the video everywhere! Have something interesting to say about a recent trend in your industry? Whether it’s on LinkedIn or Medium, blog away! Offer to guest post for publications to expand your audience!

A common misconception is that personal branding only matters when you plan to be or already are in the spotlight. You don’t need to achieve stardom to have a personal brand. We’re all in the business of managing ourselves and as such, we could leverage a strong personal brand to reach our goals.

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3 Ways to Build Your Personal Brand

Did you know what a personal brand is before the age of the internet? Ever had someone ask about what you do and you found yourself stuttering? It’s one of people’s favorite questions at networking events. I used to begin answering like, “I do a lot of things. By day, I do this. The rest of the time, A B C and D” As you can imagine, my answer rarely fit people’s attention span. Most of them would nod in confusion and move on – which was embarrassing.

This experience made me realize the importance of having a coherent story. It’s harder for multipotentialites to have an elevator pitch because of the different moving parts of their life. However, being able to tie them all together helps people get a better understanding of us. So instead of saying, “I do a lot of things. First is X, second Y and third Z” I would have likely received a better reaction from, “I am a multi-passionate creative with different pursuits in X, Y and Z.”

The way you structure your elevator pitch matters. It directly reflects on your personal brand. Also keep in mind your listener’s short attention span.

Why should you even care about having a personal brand? The term is used a lot in the professional world so it’s a relevant concept. Your personal brand refers to the way people perceive you based on how you present yourself. It shapes your reputation and influences how people interact with you. Your personal brand lays the ground for people to identify and connect with you.

So, how do you brand yourself as a multipotentialite?

Building Your Personal Brand

Identify Your Passions

Your passions aren’t necessarily the things you’re good at. A few telltale signs are whether or not you actually enjoy doing something, naturally gravitate towards it and can picture yourself doing it without getting paid. Your strengths, on the other hand, are things that you excel at and you can use them to your advantage.

Know Your Why

What is your long-term goal? What motivates you to do everything you’re doing now? Is it your dream of building your own company and contributing to the world? Once you know the driving force behind all your actions, it will be easier to tie the moving parts together so help people can better understand.

Take Context Into Account

Networking is highly contextual. The way you approach someone may vary from event to event so there is no right or wrong guide to starting a conversation. As with networking events, always keep context into account. If you joined a Facebook group that focuses entirely on bloggers, this is your opportunity to ask all your blogging related questions. Talking about your other interests may not be relevant to the niche. Just like if you’re at an event for people who are looking to transition to another career, asking questions about salary negotiation may not be appropriate. You should always keep your audience in mind so that you can get from then the reactions or results you expect.

Your personal brand is your legacy. Take care of it. Craft a story that will resonate with other people and allow them to connect with you. Being a multipotentialite doesn’t have to be a burden if you learn how to leverage your different abilities. Identifying and knowing when to use them to your strengths will take you far down the road of career development.

Read more: 3 Insanely Actionable Tops to Leverage Your Diverse Skill Set and Land More Gigs

Do you have a personal brand? Tell me about it in the comments!

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