Building Your Personal Brand As a Software Developer

Today’s world has changed tremendously since the resumes and an interview were the way to show who you were. And while the world has for some reason clung onto boring resumes, those who know how to create a personal brand are getting ahead.

First of all, get over every boomer stigma that putting yourself out there on the internet is somehow wrong. Get over the idea that an employer is searching for your Tiktok and it will ruin your chances of a job. You need to be you, everywhere. Being out there on the internet can only increase your chances of getting a job, increasing your salary and helping you live the life that you intend for yourself.

So let’s go over some keys to creating a personal brand.

Lead With Your Genuine Personality

Let’s start with thinking about what we want to show to the world. We only have a few seconds to make an impression when somebody clicks on our LinkedIn or Twitter. So we need to make sure that that few seconds gives off the exact idea that we want to put into the minds of the viewer. And we NEED to be genuine.

This is the hardest part about this whole thing. Don’t show someone else on the internet. If you show someone else you’re going to end up getting the job that that person looks like they would do a great job at not you.

You can decide what you want to show. Take a minute to brainstorm and write down a few key phrases you want people to think when they see your page.

These are mine: Entrepreneurial, Software Developer, Confident, Valuable.

Invest In a Great Picture

The first thing anyone is going to see when they see any of your profiles on the internet is your picture. Many people decide that they’re going to have a selfie on Facebook, a random picture of them in a collard shirt on LinkedIn, and an egg on Twitter. Let’s nix this idea right now that we should have a different picture on each.

Your brand must be cohesive! That means when if I follow you on Twitter and I’m on LinkedIn I should immediately be able to tell that you re the same person. Same with even your Slack picture.

Get rid of the formal picture on LinkedIn unless you are looking for roles at a funeral home.

HIRE SOMEONE TO TAKE PICTURES OF YOU IN A COOL PLACE. A place that shows your personality.

Are you an artist? Go to Brooklyn and take some pictures in front of some beautiful street art.

You increase your value when you increase your image.

Don’t be in 100 yards away from the camera. Let’s see that face of yours.

Don’t keep any of your social media separate. The Twitter you and the Instagram and the LinkedIn you need to feed off of each other.

Create Value for Others

When posting anything it’s easy to forget to think about the people that are going to see your content. When we post that selfie, we know we’re going to get likes from people that we know. That’s a normal reaction. But have we created any value in for them to the point where they are benefiting?

The answer is no.

It’s easy to get caught up in all this advice and start posting. But when you truly start to think about what value you can create for others in your post, you will start to get engagement from your target audience.

Determine Who You Can Help

If you have a clear idea about who your target audience is you are going to start to think about content that makes sense for them.

Write blogs about what you wish you knew 3 months ago. Because there’s someone out there who is 3 months behind you that can benefit from your knowledge. You always have something to give.

How will this help me get a job? The people that are looking for great software engineers are shown the same content that budding software engineers are looking for. Show that you know your craft by blogging or making videos.

Experiment and Ride the Algorithm Wave

My wife often criticizes me for posting things that are a bit out of the ordinary. That is, until one of my posts that she doubted me about gets people sharing and engaging.

The truth is we don’t know what the algorithm is going to boost. It’s almost like searching for gold. If you’re not checking under every rock you’re not going to strike it rich. So NEVER be afraid to post something. I guarantee you the Tweet that goes viral on Twitter will be the one you least expected.

But the truth is not every post is going to be a gigantic success. So overthinking a post to the point where you decide not to post is going to be detrimental. My guidance is just don’t post anything negative. We create value by lifting others up not taking them down.

To Be Continued…

I plan on adding to this article! So if you liked it please bookmark it and come back from time to time.

You can find me on Twitter and Instagram @thedrewprint and connect with me on LinkedIn — Andrew Richards