Connect, Build, Nourish Your OWN #Community & #Personal #Brand

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I was sitting in a session with Chris Walsh, a guru on creating and building successful businesses and personal wealth, a few months ago in Fort Lauderdale, Fl, when Chris said that everybody needs to build their own online community (and personal brand) regardless of whether they want to build a business, be a public speaker or just be a simple customer service agent.

What Did He Mean By This?

Bill meant we should be building our online personal communities because that is the leg work that is required down the road if you want to accomplish whatever your next goal is even if you don’t know it yet. An online community would be the sum of all online connections you have across all social media, email, etc. I have estimated I have about 10,000+ a month among all my online activity! If you are starting a business and need early customers and support, it is critical. If you are simply looking for your next job or gig, once again, it can be critical. Regardless, it does not happen overnight, so he said you have to start today. [Like a full-grown tree, you have to at least plant one today to have one in the future]

Which Community Are We Talking About?

Building YOUR community includes anyplace you communicate or interact with people who are connected to you! There are a ton of different ways to build online community through your Emails, your Websites, your Blogs, Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, Instagram, Path, Medium, Meetup, Quora, Seyopa, Periscope, Meerkat and Eventbrite. But the most important place is IN PERSON. There are a ton of these places out there where you can build your community and personal brand.

Many of you Facebookers out there have already done it for your personal community. You have built up a Facebook following of 500 to 30,000 Followers. That’s great, but Facebook may not exactly be the area I would focus on building. First off, you need to at least make some determination of what could be your future use of this community. Facebook won’t help you get leads for your business or readers of your book if your community is just your high school buddies, cousins and fraternity brothers. [Well that depends on the book actually!]

For instance, are you going to one day start a business? Your own agency? Your own engineering firm? Are you going to need certain leads? Are you going to be writing a book? Are you planning on being an expert at something? Are you going to be looking for work and finding yourself unemployed and need consulting work?

Whatever it is, you would have needed to build up your online community before you had that thought of what you were going to do!

And if you don’t need to build this online community and personal brand, well, you probably have nothing you need in the future! That’s ok. But when you find yourself on the outside of your current work situation, it’s on that day you say, wow, I should have spent more time nurturing my online community and spent less time at the office (literally).

Your Employer’s Community Is Not YOUR Community!

This post was started because I was concerned about creating communities at our employers for our employers. That is their community. It is TEMPORARY for us because we will probably move on to a job somewhere else. An employer’s community is THEIR community, not YOUR community. This is an important distinction! You may be paid to tweet and blog and represent fully an organization at networking events in person, but the day you leave that organization [or find yourself ejected from that organization], you are now your own brand, not their brand. This is a lesson we all learn in life.

We need to start building our OWN online communities and brands today! Not tomorrow!

Years ago, before the Internet, our circle or network of personal connections relied on a personal Rolodex, a written address book that we kept in our drawer. A Friday night happy hour event that we would frequent occasionally was basically where we got a few business cards to add to that address book. To build a community around ourselves was a serious task and often limited to close family and friends and business associates.

Today, with everything out there from Linkedin, Blogging, Twitter, Facebook, Meetup, Eventbrite, Instagram, MailChimp and a dozen other systems, we are easily able to build a community of several thousand. I’ve done this. In the dating event business I co-founded we have built a community of half a million people that we communicate with on a regular basis. Famous sports stars, actors and other famous people all have communities in the millions.

You are no different than the Kardashians and Hiltons. You just don’t know it yet.

So, take the first step and write a post like this one about a subject so people get to know what you are into. [That’s what we call nurturing]. Tweet and blog on a regular basis and always hash tag (key word) your content [more connecting and nurturing]. And most of all respond and interact with people on these forums and systems. Build your personal brand and not your bosses! Start Today By Tweeting About This Post, Commenting On This Post And RECOMMENDING This Post On Linkedin and other sites. That is how you build your community.

So what is my thing. Well it’s running Tech Startup Pitch Events! We call our company StartupPOP and we are running our 13th pitch event in South Florida on Feb 2, 2016. We are planning events in 2016 right now in NYC, Tampa, Richmond, Parsippany and Greensboro. If you want to join us and run events with us, we will assist you locally in everything you need to know and help you pull off the most successful Startup Pitch Event you have ever attended. We are looking for startup pitch event managers in cities all across the US. This is for startup gurus, ex-startup founders, part-time real estate agents, and anybody who believes they can handle this event locally and really wants to do it. Trust me it is a lot of fun. If this is your thing, and you want to go for it, email me at dan@startuppop.com and tell me why you would be terrific at running your own startup pitch event. Also, just wanted to mention that I got into this not for the money, but let’s just say we try to make a small profit. So, you can make some extra money in your spare time and have a good time.

So if you are in South Florida on Feb 2 , 2016, at 6pm in Boca Raton, FL we are running a startup pitch event at The Greenhouse. This time we are running GRAND PRIX, which is a contest where startups compete for prizes. Our event is basically 5 to 10 startups, a panel of experts and an audience that comes for networking and knowledge. If you are not from South Florida, and want to get involved by running a StartupPOP event in your local community please email me at dan@startuppop.com.

Also, if you are located in South Florida, remember to attend Sup-X, the big start-up event on February 15–16 (my birthday). Here is a link to sign up:http://www.eventbrite.com/e/sup-xtm-the-startup-expo-tickets-17872498123?aff=SUPXPARTNER3&afu=3362226985
Use these discount codes!
GENERAL ADMISSION Discount code: SUPXGA99
All Access VIP Pass Discount code: SUPXVIP299

And finally on Jan 20th there is a marketing day event at Palm Beach State College, “2016 Innovative Marketing How To’s Workshop”https://www.eventbrite.com/e/workshop-2016-innovative-marketing-how-tos-tickets-20253652219

Have a great day!

Dan Gudema

This was rebroadcast from my Linkedin Account, because linkedin does a bad job at posting to Google!  The original post was here: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/connect-build-nourish-your-own-community-personal-brand-dan-gudema?trk=mp-author-card

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