I used to have no clue how to use LinkedIn and posted dry content that got no engagement.

What I’ve learned on LinkedIn is that if you really want to build a personal brand that will resonate with people and that will make people want to know more about you, like you for who you are and trust you, then you have to embrace vulnerability.

What is being vulnerable on social media, especially a professional social media platform?

So this does not mean that you need to overshare. Nor does it mean that you need to do anything that makes you uncomfortable.

Being vulnerable means giving yourself permission to be yourself and sharing stories about your failures and challenges. It’s the why behind what you do. It’s how you got to where you are. It’s the lessons you learned along the way. Storytelling is one of the most powerful ways to build your personal brand.

All of my LinkedIn posts that have gone “viral” share one thing in common – in them I recounted a personal story. The story is always one that has a purpose – something I’ve overcome, a lesson I learned, something I faced that was difficult. The idea is to make the challenging moments of your life into teaching/aha moments for you and others.

Being vulnerable also means being seen as a relatable and likeable person who is not perfect (no one is!), doesn’t seem boastful or all-knowing and someone who is motivated to help others through their posts.

Vulnerability builds connections and connections builds trust. In the process you’ll build your network and platform and strengthen your personal brand.