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  • Writer's pictureDel Chatterson

Profiling is a Problem

I am not referring to the policing tactics that lead to so much turmoil, but to the never-ending management of your own personal  profile. It is essential to your personal branding and the presence of so many online profiles on different platforms is extremely important to perceptions of your reputation and credibility.

Profile maintenance is never-ending, requiring continuous revision your life story on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter plus your website, CV, and other marketing and PR bios and blurbs. It's hard to be consistent and effective in presenting yourself. And you may be fighting other versions of your story that are still found on the Internet. Aren't you the guy who ...?

I'm reminded of the story of Dizzy Dean, a baseball hero of the 1940's. (I know, before your time and mine, but there was a movie....) Apparently after his first game with the Yankees he created a media frenzy with his sensational pitching.  He spent hours in the dressing room after the game with one reporter after

another asking  him to tell them his life story. The next day in the papers, remarkably everybody had a different story.  His manager asked him, "What happened?"

"Well," Dizzy Dean replied, "I just didn't think it was fair to give them all the same story."

Maybe not a good branding strategy, but perhaps an early example of "mass personalization"?  Everyone got a story that was interesting and original to them.  It is part of every pitch to adjust for the particular target audience and appeal to the areas you have in common.  So long as it's all true and you're not inventing a new life story that is complete fiction. Unless you are writing your biography, keep your profile concise, simple and consistent. Focus on the key points that are important to your chosen target audience and do not try to appeal to everybody.

In my own profile I am re-branding myself as your Uncle Ralph.  It's the persona I want to present as the experienced, wise and friendly advisor for entrepreneurs. Not an academic management professor, not a celebrity CEO and not a new techie billionaire.  Just a former business owner and entrepreneur who is now consulting, advising, writing and cheerleading for entrepreneurs.

Del Chatterson is your Uncle Ralph.

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