I originally published this article on the Huffington Post:

I found Shane Barker on Twitter one day when he shared a blog post with me called, “San Francisco 49ers Social Media: Why Hire Shane Barker?” Pretty bold, Shane! I had to find out who this guy was.

But first, let me note: Shane does several things right on his blog, if you notice. He isn’t shy about sharing his street credibility. He’s a Klout 1 percent influencer — check. He’s rated on Angie’s List — check. He’s a #1 ranked social media consultant according to ProScore (which I’ve never heard of but who cares) — check.

Plus his blog is well designed, clean, and he contributes to it regularly. If the 49ers won’t take him, then it’s their loss! (But then something unexpected happened, keep reading…)

I’m a sucker for social media success stories and so, after reading about Shane, I decided to follow him and see where this whole thing got him. Were the 49ers going to hire Shane or was he going to fall on his face? I had to know!

Well, as it turned out, six months later, neither happened. Rather, he gets an email from a company he’s never heard of in Uzbekistan. Yep. Not joking.

Uzbekistan? Really?

Meanwhile, in Uzbekistan, Nodir Mirsidov founder of a company called Modera.co, an international start-up, that created an app (PickItApp) was in need of a talented social media manager.

Determined to find the right person, Modera started researching a number of different social media companies through all the popular social channels (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, Klout, etc.) along with in-depth, web-based research.

Narrowing the search down to 100 candidates and further thinning it down based upon geographic location, they proceeded with interviews to find the best fit for their company.

They Find Shane

Shane stood out amongst the best based solely on his social media presence. His online existence showed his willingness to take on challenges, have a positive outlook, and sincerely care about his network.

Let Me Say Those Again

  1. Willingness to take on a challenge = motivation
  2. Positive outlook = fit and personality
  3. Cares about his network = professionalism and visibility

His social profiles were active and contained original content that tied into his professional goals.

So Modera hired him as their social media marketing person.

Currently, he’s doing so well for the company that the other two co-founders, Marat Ibragimov and Sanjar Babadjanov, came to San Francisco to pursue Series A funding.

Shane, within a few months at a company he didn’t even know existed, became co-founder (and owes me a beer for following him on Twitter!). I’m sure he’s a 49ers fan still, but it’s their loss I tell you!

How This Affects You

When you put yourself out there you never know what might come your way. So, take a look at your profiles and assess it from an outside perspective. It’s not just about being “findable,” where so many people get fixated — it’s also about showing up to the table and communicating with your network.

What are you presenting to future employers with your online presence? Are you prepared for an unexpected call from Uzbekistan (figuratively of course!)?