Nowadays, it’s not just companies that create a brand for themselves.
You’ve only to look at the likes of Katie Price or Joey Essex to see that just about anyone can create their own personal brand, even if said brand is based on divorcing popstars or being orange. As a blogger, you might have already begun to create a brand for yourself without even realising, just by doing what you love most. But by actively thinking about how you can promote Brand You may reap a number of benefits – it’ll make you more interesting to companies, and potential new readers may be drawn in by having your brand personality defined and available.
So how can you begin to create your own brand? Here’s five suggestions to get you started:
1. Think about your moniker
Is your blog simply named after you, or do you have an online moniker? We see some really creative blog names on our travels, so ensure yours is easy to remember, and particularly easy to spell. It may seem trivial, but the more accessible you make yourself the more exposure you’re likely to gain. (Just ask Tulisa.) Consider a nickname, or a play on your blog title, when thinking about how you and your followers can refer to you, especially when it comes to Twitter handles etc.
It’s something that big brands strive to get right, and it’s why they spend a lot of time and effort ensuring that wherever they’re represented, it’s in the way they want to be. So, take a look at your blog and your Twitter – are they similar? Would you be able to tell they are connected, and the same person writes both? Is your blog the result of care, attention and time? Could the same be said for your Twitter? Ensuring your avatar, your Twitter background and your Facebook page tie in with your blog will do you the world of good.
3. Cover your channels
The first thing we do when advising brands on how to work with bloggers is to see what’s already out there. Google yourself – what comes up? If there’s still a Myspace lingering around the first page, why not go in and tidy it up a bit? A potential brand doesn’t need to see that quiz you did about yourself when you were 15. Also, consider covering your ‘brand name’ off on the major social channels. What if an ‘adult’ company decided they wanted to name their new Google+ page the same name as your blog? Sure, it’s an extreme example, but ensuring ownership across the web will protect you.
4. Buy your domain
Think about your favourite band. Is their web address myfavouriteband.wordpress.com? Of course it isn’t. Owning your own domain is key to developing your brand. It looks more professional, particularly if you’re reaching out to new brands and audiences via business cards or on LinkedIn. Not sure how to go about it? Check out Katie’s guide to buying and setting up your own domain here.
5. Dial down the drama
New graduates are told to watch what they put on their social channels in case potential employees take a quick look before deciding whether to hire them for that first step of the career ladder position. It’s the same for bloggers and freelancers too. We’re not saying don’t have personality, and we’re certainly not saying censor your opinions or stop giving criticisms. We’re just saying be careful what you put out there, and don’t start unnecessary arguments. We’ve seen bloggers get into online spats, and it puts us off using them. Be clever, witty and creative – all the brilliant things you’re probably already being, and you’ll be well on the way to Brand You.
Have you seen any good examples of bloggers as brands? Let us know in the comments.