How to create a presence online

Katy Regan gets the lowdown from branding guru Catherine Kaputa about how to make the internet work harder for you


How to create a presence online

We all know that companies have to be masters of branding themselves – but how to we go about doing it for ourselves?

Branding guru and author Catherine Kaputa believes that it’s only by seeing yourself as a product, a brand, that you get to hone yourself, to know your strengths and weaknesses, to maximise and downplay them respectively.

Most importantly, learning to self-brand enables you to differentiate yourself from competitors, to ‘think outside-in’ – that is, ‘thinking first what the market wants and then strategically positioning yourself to meet those needs’.

And one way you can do this is create the online presence that portrays you best.

‘People will Google you,’ says Kaputa. ‘That’s just the way it is these days. The great thing is, you can control your online presence. You can tell the story you want to tell about yourself. A mistake I see again and again is people not putting in enough time designing and moulding their story and their presence online.’

Kaputa has some clear ideas, making LinkedIn the key driver being the main one. I’ve never even used LinkedIn before but spend two days following her advice:

I ask her about blogging, Twitter and Facebook, things I feel much more comfortable doing since I do them in my own capacity as an author.

Blogging is great, she says, as long as the way you do it really adds value to your brand. ‘Be transparent when you blog; don’t just write about projects you’re doing, write about what went wrong and right,' she adds. 'People want to see how you think.’

And if you’re not very good on the social media side of things? ‘Take a course!’ says Kaputa. ‘Technology is the underpinning of everything these days. To avoid that is not very smart at all.’

More inspiration:

Read Women Who Brand: How Smart Women Promote Themselves And Get Ahead (Nicholas Brealey Publishing, £12.08) by Catherine Kaputa. For more information on Catherine Kaputa and self-branding visit:

Read Career change in 2015? by David Head on LifeLabs

Read Back to work by Mark Vernon on LifeLabs

Read Sex, lies and social media by David Head on LifeLabs

Photograph: iStock