Tag Archives: Marketing

Defending Your Personal Brand Online

So what do you see when you google your name. Is it a listing for a convicted felon or porn star? If you have an unusual name (like a well differentiated keyword) you will rise to the top automatically. But if you have an ordinary name you might not even show up. What you don’t want to happen is to have a search result that doesn’t represent you.

  • Your name is your brand so use it consistently. Dont dilute it by using different variations – pick one version of your name and stick with it.
  • If you share a name with a famous person you might consider adding an initial to your online name. You need to be consistent with this however – also using the initial on your business cards and other correspondence.
  • Capture your “branded” name in as many places as you can so that when someone else types it in – information about you appears. Be sure to customize your profile name using your “branded” name. For example, your Linkedin profile can be customized using your name – making it easy to remember and share. Its better to do this earlier than later – particularly on the fast growing social sites. I always lamented turning down the opportunity to have a gmail account when “jeffreyblake@gmail.com” was actually available. I would have preferred to own it as opposed to someone else.
  • You should periodically check what other people are seeing on google about you. If you are a job hunter – rest assured that recruiters are checking you out online. So you will need to see what they see and take action if the results are unflattering. You will need to devise a campaign to add visibility.
  • Another good thing to check in the google search is if good keywords are associated with your name. So you could try “Jeffrey Blake Architect” for example to find out about me. Try searching on your name a keyword associated with your profession. If nothing come up then you will need to do some work.
  • You can easily automate your monitoring of your brand by setting up Google Alerts which can send you periodic reports on what is showing up on the web about your brand. I found that you need to experiment what you monitor to get the right mix of results.
  • If you are invisible online there is a number of things you can do to increase your visibility and off the top of my head is to join some professional networks as Linkedin that show up well in searches. Contribute to online conversations using your well branded name.
  • This should have been mentioned earlier – but go out and get a domain name using your brand name. Its OK to use something other than your name – but a using your name is most effective. Capture a .com domain if you can – because that is the most prestigious right now. Frankly I don’t get “.biz” for an individual or a company.
  • You can capture a custom profile URL at a zillion sites. I like to control my name before someone else. For example you can get custom profiles at Delicious, FriendFeed, LinkedIn, Twitter, HubPages, Facebook, Plaxo, and Reddit just to name a few. Follow your interests and signup can customize your profile.


Living at the Nexus of Technology, Service, Marketing and Evangelism @ JeffreyBlake.com

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Personal Branding – You Are the Fulcrum

“Give me a place to stand,” said Archimedes, “and I will move the world.”

As you probably know, a fulcrum is the pivot point for a lever. And we know that Archimedes was planning to use a lever to move the world. But a lever by itself is worthless. It needs the fulcrum to actually do the leveraging. You are that fulcrum.

Part of a good brand is being focused on a dream that you want to come true. It is the thing that drives a personal brand. While branding is about creating impressions – it is also about the process of being who we want to become. It is not about what we are. We achieve our goals by being the fulcrum. And to lift the goal we need to place some things on our lever. We leverage ourselves my relying on several things.

archimedes

  • Get a Mentor – someone who has been there before. They can help you make good career choices and avoid misteps.
  • Build a Team around you – these are a close set of confidants who can help you and you can help them. You are stronger when you have a team.
  • Build a network. Have a big rolodex. I like to use Linkedin. We all know about the six degrees of separation and there are really very few steps between you and anyone on the planet.
  • Use the internet and social networks to communicate your message and to stay in touch.
  • Pay Attention to synchronicity. Carl Jung referred to synchronicity as “meaningful coincidences” Recently I have been cataloguing the meaningful coincidences that happen to me. As I begin to focus my brand I have found that more “coincidences” happen to me. Maybe its a spiritual thing – I don’t know – I just know to follow the lead.
  • Keep a focus on your goal. For some reason when you align your skills, your dreams, your ego, your energy, your everything – you become a magnet for opportunity.


Living at the Nexus of Technology, Service, Marketing and Evangelism @ JeffreyBlake.com

Personal Branding is Telling Authentic Stories

Lately, Ive been attempting to come to grips with telling my personal story more effectively. I know its important to tell a good story in order to have people remember you positively. But I didnt really understand the power of story telling until I read Seth Godin’s book called “All Marketers Are Liars”. And before you misunderstand the title I have to tell you the subtitle is “The Power of Telling Authentic Stories in a Low-Trust World”.

liars
The whole book is interesting but Im only going to relate a single story about Riedel drinking glasses. You probably know that Georg Riedel is a tenth-generation glassblower and his company produces all sorts of drinking glasses. He and his staff fervently believe that there is a perfect shape for every beverage. And according to the website “The delivery of a wine’s message, its bouquet and taste, depends on the form of the glass”. As it turns out, connoisseurs all will tell you that the glass makes a profound difference. In fact, I bought a couple of “special” scotch drinking glasses a few years back and always thought that they were the perfect delivery mechanisms. The funny thing is that in blind tastings – there is no difference. What does that tell you?

What it tells you is that we have a better experience because thats what we believe. The belief becomes the truth. In personal branding we want to tell people about ourselves – for career advancement, for money, for a new job – whatever. The point here is that the amazing and remarkable achievements in our career have an impact only if the listener is properly prepared to hear and accept the information. To be affective, we must talk about ourselves using authentic, engaging and believable stories. The “story” is the perfect delivery mechanism for our skills and accomplishments. Just like the glass that makes the contents better – the story makes our accomplishments better.

Living at the Nexus of Technology, Service, Marketing and Evangelism @ JeffreyBlake.com

Personal Branding – Do you have expertise Or are you and Expert?

I have found that when we talk about ourselves we might say that we have some particular expertise in something and only rarely do we say “I am an expert”. This is a personal branding mistake. For example, I might say that I have expertise in Java Software Architecture. But it would be better expressed as saying “I am a Java Software Architecture Expert”. And another thing, the more you repeat this phrase – the more people with believe it and refer to you as the “Expert”. Saying that you have “expertise” is a commodity statement that is cast away from consciousness faster than you can finish the sentence. When branding yourself – you must refer to yourself directly.

Living at the Nexus of Technology, Service, Marketing and Evangelism @ JeffreyBlake.com