by Artwell Nwaila (@artwelln) Over the years I’ve been fortunate enough to work with super-talented creatives. So talented that you’d think by now they would be the talk of the town by now but they aren’t – no-one knows who they are.

In the past, this would be acceptable because being well-known was 70% knowing the right people and 20% flirting and 10% luck.

Social Media Network by Vlado courtesy of
Image by Vlado courtesy of

Today, we have social media on our side and it’s possible to get your personal creative brand out there and use that to boost your career. Let’s look at five steps to boost your creative reputation on the interwebs.

A quick disclaimer: I’m not saying popularity is everything. *giggles on the side*

  1. Zone in on a specialty

Start by identifying a gap that lack experts. Focus upon this specialty and research it thoroughly.

When I say identify a gap, I am referring to a gap that is in your industry, something that you’re already well skilled in.

Now that you have identified it, get even more skilled in it.

  1. Identify platforms to share your specialty

The questions you should ask yourself:

  • Who am I wanting to talk to ?
  • Where do they hang out online?
  • What tone do they relate to?

Answering the above will lead you directly to the correct online platforms.

If you’re struggling to get the correct answers, do a little bit of stalking — just make sure it’s not me because I will stalk you back.

  1. Hide or delete the digital platforms you don’t want being seen

If you’re serious about being taken seriously and eventually becoming a thought leader, you need to start doing some cleaning up.

If one of your specialty platforms is not Facebook, use your security features to hide your profile from the public. If your Twitter is filled with Steve Hofmayer retweets, quickly do some deleting.

Once you have done your spring-cleaning, you need to maintain a spotless record. Trust me, stupid behaviour online will always come back to haunt you. You may blame Google for that.

  1. Separate your personal and speciality talk.

Avoid talking business on personal platforms; rather create groups and pages where people may subscribe and engage with you.

You do not want to post a professional post on your personal account and cc industry leaders, only to get a comment from your baby’s mama demanding her maintenance…

This really happened to a Facebook post I was cc’d in. Instead of us talking about his topic, we had a mass intervention for him to pay his maintenance.

  1. Be consistent

Post regularly on the set topic; you want to make sure that you are the go-to person when it comes to your topic. Also, find other groups within the same industry and regularly contribute there.

Once you’ve built your reputation solidly, do what I’m doing now: write for relevant publications and get read by all the people who matter. You will then be well on your way to finding the dream job, business deal and that hot stalker you’ve always dreamt of.

In conclusion, I’d like to add that the above steps will only work if you also make an effort to go to networking events and do real-time connections. The steps I have recommended will get you to the events; the rest is up to you.


Artwell NwailaArtwell Nwaila (@artwelln) is a creative director at Offlimit Communications, as well as founder and publisher of the award-winning SA Creatives (@thesacreatives), a network intended to help creatives move their professional lives forward through showcases, news and a freelancer directory. His monthly column on MarkLives, “Creation”, is a humorous take on life in the creative world, seasoned with practical advice based on experience.


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