Ok, so you have to try a little. But there are ways to leverage what you are already doing to get people to notice you. Chances are, you might already be doing some of them.
Before I share my pearls of wisdom, I'll tell you why I decided to write this article. Something strange started happening about 6 months ago. I started receiving emails from head hunters or businesses telling me that they were interested in me. This struck me as odd. I hadn't applied for any jobs. I didn't have my resume out to any job placement firms. And yet, here I was, getting email after email from people who wanted me to interview for a job.
I was intrigued, and so when I would respond to the emailer I would ask the question, "How did you find me?". The answer actually surprised me. In most cases they had found me through my Github account. Almost all of them stated that they were perusing code that I had written, decided I was someone they liked and contacted me about a position they had open.
I couldn't believe it. Here I was, not even looking for a job and offers just fell into my lap. All because I decided to host my code projects on Github. This got me thinking about the ramifications of social media and sites like Github. If they were finding me there, why not elsewhere. Thus began my journey to self-promotion.
The Secret Sauce
I started to think about what my identity was on the web. How I was presenting myself and how people out there in the world would perceive me if they happened upon my profiles somewhere. This realization that "what I do on the web matters" made a huge impact on what I put out there. I wasn't just talking to my friends when I posted on twitter. My code wasn't just seen by me or my coworkers on Github. It was readily available for anyone that wanted to find me.
I realized that I needed to present myself the way that I wanted people to see me. I started by re-designing my blog. I used to have it on tumblr which worked, but I needed to have more control over the content. I took this opportunity to find and use open source tools to recreate my blog. I decided to use Github and Jekyll to build and serve the blog when I relaunched it.
I also started to use my twitter account to announce when I released new articles. This would not only allow me to reach people I knew but hopefully start building my follower circle with more people that had similar interests.
I also joined Zerply, which is a service
similar to LinkedIn, but is a much better
If you are a designer, you should probably have an account on dribbble or DeviantArt. These sites allow you to show off your artwork in different ways. These sites are also a great source of inspiration for when you are feeling blocked.
The world is changing and companies are starting to take advantage of the online resources that are out there. Put yourself out there. Create a blog and talk about things you are passionate about. Don't let the "I'm not a writer" mentality stop you either. I would not consider myself a writer but here I am, putting "pen to paper". If it helps you, just write as if you are talking to your friends. I find that a conversational tone to your writing is well received by most people.
If you're a developer, get an account on Github and let people see your code. While you're at it, look at their code too. I have found that reading other people's code has taught me more than some books on the subject. For the artists out there, do the same. Get on a website like dribbble or DeviantArt that lets you showcase your work. Don't be afraid of feedback either. Even if it's negative, there is always something to be learned.
But above all else, remember this: what you put out there on the web is going to be seen by someone. It might be your current employer, future boss, spouse, partner, friend. Present the image you want people to see, because the internet is fast becoming the "background check" preferred by the masses.
Something missing? Need more explanation? Let me know in the