Why Create A Strong Digital Presence?
What is the purpose of having a Digital Presence? Why create a Digital Presence in the first place? As the internet evolved, it became more important for us to find each other online. If you aren’t online, then it’s harder for you to be found. If you can’t be found online, then you are missing out on opportunities.
It’s quite common for Jamaican people to have little, to no digital footprint at all. Even if someone, somewhere in the world was in need of your skills they cannot find you. Does this sound like you? Or someone you know? Well then, don’t panic, there are ways to remedy this.
Citizens Of The World
In today’s modern world, we are all a part of a global village. To participate, you need a digital footprint. The stronger it is, the higher your chances are of an opportunity finding you. Creating a Strong Digital Presence may sound hard however, there are simple things you can do, and some you might already be doing.
With the right setup in place people from all over the world will message you for your services. Individuals who are looking to work or stay permanently overseas can especially benefit. People who have skills that don’t require leaving their house have an advantage.
Imagine working as a programmer for a U.S.-based tech company while still in Jamaica. Attending a virtual conference where you are requested as a speaker. You could even work as a Copywriter for an international company. The possibilities are endless.
The Top Three
There is a high chance that you are already a member of Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Both old and young Jamaicans are likely to have a Facebook account. It was the go-to social media website at one point. There is even a popular saying regarding the website.
Everybadi an dem gran modda have a Facebook account.
Having an active account on all 3 of these platforms means that you can be found online. Each is said to serve its own niche so approach each with a different strategy. Instagram for example, is more photo-centric so the same strategy may not work on a mainly text-based site like Twitter. Experiment and find out what works best for you.
People have gained jobs by simply responding to tweets or Direct Messages. The platform has a lot of job hunters and employers on it interacting casually. It is no surprise that some people use Twitter as one of their main sources for job hunting.
Why would an employer reach out to you on Twitter? Structuring your Twitter profile properly and the content you put out is often all that is needed. Interacting with potential employers could give you an advantage. Tweet about stuff you work on, jobs done and that’s it. Social Media is a tool, how you choose to use it is up to you.
When it comes to being approached for opportunities, LinkedIn is a must have. The social media site allows you to showcase your skillset, connect with employers and upskill yourself. The platform is also used to advertise jobs so it is truly a one-stop shop.
You hear countless stories of people being approached for jobs on LinkedIn. Inmail is a premium feature that allows anyone to message you without being a connection. Based on your profile, someone could reach out with a job opportunity.
There are several accounts that use LinkedIn for personal branding. They focus on a particular niche and create content based on it. This always some of them to become thought leaders in the area. This can be leveraged to entice people into signing up for a paid newsletter or service.
If you take this route, ensure that you are deliberate in your personal branding strategy. Saphrah-Ann Wint’s post is a great example of creating a personal brand. You can also check out Ruben Hassid and Dr. Terri-Karelle Reid.
Graphic Design is probably the most common digital skill that Jamaican people have. There are tons of graphic designers available for hire. Finding quality designers may be a challenge though. The Small Business Board has two designers that you can check out.
Graphic design is a skill that is in demand globally. So how can our local graphic designers be found? There are websites such as Behance and Dribble that allow designers to showcase their skills. Employers also check out these websites looking for potential employees. You could be hired and earn international rates just by having a great portfolio.
These websites also allow you to provide links to purchase your designs. Just having a portfolio on these websites can open up many doors that you never thought possible. There are a lot of other users on the platforms as well so be sure to put in the work needed to stand out.
The only difference between a graphic designer in Jamaica and one in the USA is skill level.
Have A Personal Website
A personal website is a must have in this digital world. It should do the following:
Showcase your skills
Some information about you.
Display projects you have worked on.
Provide Contact information.
Companies/people you have worked with(optional).
Events you have spoken at(if you are a speaker).
A section for Blogging.
The main goal of your personal website is to really market yourself to whoever is visiting. The personal website is what many recruiters see and decide whether or not to approach. You can check out Kenny Sutherland’s Portfolio.
It is my view that everyone should have a personal blog. You can reflect on the year that was or write about how you dealt with an issue. It allows people to gain some insight into you. If you need a personal website/blog built then email email@example.com and we can have one up and running in no time.
This article mentioned the main platforms you can use but there are of course others. Some people create boards on Pinterest, others have hilarious TikTok accounts, and so on. Youtube can also be a viable option if you are into creating videos.
Platforms like Fiverr allow you to offer freelancing services from Graphic Design to Website Creation and more. When it comes to platforms like it and UpWork, just know that you have to find a way to stand out. More Jamaicans need to utilize these platforms and offer their services.
There are local platforms being developed and on the rise in the country. Have you ever had trouble finding a skilled professional to, for example, conduct plumbing work? ClickAwayJa might just be the platform for you. I hope that we create more platforms and obtain buy-in from citizens.
It is important to keep a lookout for what might be the next big platform and adapt. People tend to reach out where you least expect it.