We live in the interconnected digital age. Technology and access to the world are available at our fingertips. The first thing you probably do when you wake up each morning is to check your social media accounts. You see what family and friends are doing and get updates from the entrepreneurs that you follow and are connected to. You take a little bit of what you see from others and model your social media accounts and postings to best portray you as a person and entrepreneur.
While there is a lot of good stuff happening online, there are definitely some things and strategies that you don’t want to model. The ability to portray an edited version of someone’s life has led to fake personas and an unrealistic look at entrepreneurship. It’s not uncommon to only see the good in someone’s life when you know there’s a flip side. You know that there is more than that and it turns you off. What you see is the pinnacle of an entrepreneur’s success but they leave out the 100 other steps it took to reach that success.
You need a loyal audience and customers to build a business that stands the test of time. You get loyalty when you make a deeper connection. The deeper connection comes from authenticity because people already know there’s more to the story. Here are four ways you don’t want to portray yourself online. They won’t form deeper connections and make the impact that you’re trying to make with your business.
The “Hustle 24/7” Entrepreneur
You see this almost daily. The entrepreneur that’s always posting about their hustle efforts. They work on their business all the time and portray that strategy as the only way to be dedicated. They work long hours each day, on weekends and won’t enjoy the little pleasures of life — all in the name of entrepreneurship.
First, you know it’s a front. There are only a few entrepreneurs who actual work that hard. Names like Gary Vaynerchuk and Elon Musk come to mind. Second, why build a business to have it turn into a job for you? The best businesses are built with balance. Life and business intersect in harmony. Portraying yourself as always hustling won’t build a real connection with your audience.
The “Always on” Entrepreneur
These entrepreneurs portray themselves a lot like the first. They are always in “entrepreneur mode.” It’s all they talk about and think about. When they see other entrepreneurs posting about enjoying life through things like TV shows and other mindless enjoyments, they are quick to attack. They make others feel like they don’t care about their business if that’s not the 100 percent focus of the entrepreneur. Don’t portray yourself this way because not only will you lose your audience, you’ll lose your friends.
The Flip-Flop Entrepreneur
This is the entrepreneur who does something new every week. Two months ago, they were a Snapchat expert. Last month, they were a Facebook Messenger bot expert. This week, they’re a Bitcoin millionaire and expert. They chase the latest trends. You see this person and realize they haven’t figured it out yet.
You will be respected and followed when you build a deep foundation on a topic. When you build your business with structure and work hard every day to make yourself more of an expert on your topic. Don’t portray yourself as flaky by constantly chasing trends.
The “Look at Me” Entrepreneur
This entrepreneur is always posting things that scream “check out how amazing my life is all the time.” They only share their wins and accolades. They never share anything that portrays themselves as less than a superstar. People won’t believe it and they’ll see right through it.
Arrogance tends to push people away. Share your wins but also share your disappointments. Show the full picture and you’ll get a lot more respect.
It’s easy to get lost in the power and attention that comes from being followed and talked about online. It tempts you to be something other than yourself. Don’t fall for it. People know the real thing when they see it.