If you want to build a successful online brand as a professional dancer, you have to be very intentional about it. It doesn’t happen by accident, and it’s not something that just occurs automatically because you’re active on social media.
I’ve been reflecting a lot lately on what got me to where I am today (I guess with this being the end of the year and all). I’ve been thinking a lot about what I did to accomplish many of the goals that I’ve accomplished professionally, so that I might share some helpful tips with you today, to close out the year on a high note.
So here’s what I came up with…
5 Things I Did To Build A Successful Online Brand As A Professional Dancer
1. I owned my gift. After successfully using social media, blogging, and videos to promote and grow my own business (a dance teacher staffing company that I previously owned), I realized that I had a gift. Besides dancing, teaching dance, and choreographing, I had a gift for building connections, and relationships online, and creating content that mattered to people, using social media. I also have a gift for teaching. Combined, these two gifts proved to be very rewarding for me, as well as very lucrative financially, and business-wise.
Be confident in the gift(s) that God has placed inside of you, and do everything in your power to use them for His glory, and to be a blessing to other people.
2. I owned my territory. God showed me many years ago that he wanted me to focus these gifts, that I mentioned above, on serving the dance community/dance industry. Now I’m not gonna lie to you. I hesitated on this many times, and I have worked with people outside of the dance industry many times. However, God has been consistent (and persistent) in reminding me that the dance industry is, “my territory”.
This simply means that I have a calling on my life (a purpose), to use my God-given gifts and talents to primarily serve people in the dance industry. At times I’ve felt like, “Really Lord? But most dancers don’t have any money! How’s that gonna work?” Lol Yes, I said that! I’m keeping it all the way real with you guys! But the truth is, where God guides, He provides. By the way, not ALL dancers are broke! So if you feel led to service a specific community, demographic, or niche market, within your industry, go for it! Don’t let anyone discourage you (even yourself). God will make a way for you!
3. I chose and controlled the message I put out into the world. As a grown-up in these social media streets, you have to be intentional about the messages and the content that you put out into the world. You can’t post just anything on social media, and think that there aren’t going to be any consequences. That’s not how it works. So I have always been very intentional about the messages that I put out on social media. I have essentially taught people certain things about me personally, and professionally, and then driven that message home, again and again, on every social platform, for the past 10 years.
If you want people to think of certain adjectives, themes, or feel a certain way, when your name comes to mind, it’s up to you to create those messages, and that atmosphere, on your social profiles. Tell people what you want them to know, then repeat it, over and over again, so they get it. That way, when they need someone who does what you do, with your level of expertise, knowledge, and your vibe, your name will be the first name that comes to mind.
4. I stayed true to myself. If you’ve been following me for any length of time on social media, then you already know some things about me: I’m a proud mom and wife, and I love my babies, and my hubby. I have a passion for dance, social media marketing, online branding, online videos, and for teaching and empowering you with the knowledge you need to thrive in your professional life, using your God-given gifts and talents. I am a woman of faith, saved by grace, through Jesus Christ. I am a positive person who always looks to encourage and uplift someone else. This is me, in real life, and online. You will never have to wonder, “What’s this Ashani chick all about?” It’s all out there, and it’s all real, and people respect and trust that.
Are you staying true to yourself online? Do your social media profiles match who you are in real life? Do they match your level of expertise professionally?
Just be you! Everyone’s not meant to like you! You’re not ice cream (and hey, some people don’t even like ice cream)! lol
5. I stayed consistent. I have taken you guys on a journey with me over the years from; starting my first dance business, starting my first dance blog, getting married, shutting down my first dance business, starting my career as a Social Media Marketing Consultant for the dance industry, hosting and producing my first radio show/podcast, hosting and producing my first dance tv show, having my first baby, having another baby (who was born 3 months early, and landed in the NICU for 2 months), to buying our first home, to having ANOTHER baby lol, to my husband becoming a U.S. Citizen, and all of my professional milestones in between, i.e. building social media marketing strategies and campaigns for some of the top brands in the dance industry.
It’s all been real. I’ve shared testimonials with you from real people that I’ve worked with. I’ve shared it all with you through social media, and through my weekly e-mails. I’ve shared it with you in my videos, and in my blog posts. I’ve been present. You know who I am. You know you can trust me.
Does your online community (fans and followers alike) know who you are? Do they know that they can trust you? Have you been consistent on social media? Do you ever disappear from social media without warning?
Are you talking about one thing today, something completely different tomorrow, then posting a negative and emotional rant the next day?
Consistency is the key to everything in life. If you’re not showing up consistently, putting in the work, and showing people that you are competent, professional, reliable, and trustworthy, you’re really missing out on a lot of potentially awesome relationships, and opportunities. So make sure that you’re consistent and real in everything you do.
Alright, so those are my thoughts of reflection for 2017. I hope that there were some points in there that spoke to you, empowered you, and encouraged you. If there were, feel free to post a comment below, and let me know what it is. I’d love to hear from you!
If you want to work with me, or gain access to my knowledge of online branding, social media marketing, and online videos, to help build your own online brand, in a way that is purposeful, powerful, and profitable, I recommend two options for you today. You can see them below!