Personal Online Branding For Beginners

In the age of the internet, how you present yourself to the universe simply cannot be taken for granted any more. Pictures and content about you are taken, either knowingly or otherwise, and posted on people’s Facebook and Twitter profiles or on their blogs. The concept of personal information such as telephone numbers, addresses, age and sex are easily available on the internet, often for free, if you know where to look – there is no point in hiding the information, you may as well make the most of it.

Therefore personal online branding is an item I have recently taken proactive steps to take ownership of my own brand. There are quite a few places you can go to create and define your online identity. The big fish in the sea are Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, Google+, blogs (aka WordPress, Tumblr etc), Google Buzz, Orkut, the list goes on…there are many, many social networks and ways to represent your identity on the internet. The important thing is to keep your profiles uniform, this will make your personal brand identity more definite and offer a clean insight into you and your life.

Items that I have improved recently:

I’ve made sure that my Linkedin profile is essentially a peek into my professional experience and goals, a resume for the internet, if you will. I update my profile as often as needed and I do not have any extraneous information (fat) on it. It is a lean, effective and purpose built profile.

My Facebook account is no longer a place with privacy settings set at “show everything to anybody”. It is not prudent to be flippant with Facebook as everybody from your Mother to your Grandmother to your Boss use Facebook and can very easily stumble upon something that you wish they hadn’t. Plus Facebook’s, ever changing, terms of conditions says they own everything you post on Facebook (paraphrasing here).

I signed up with Klout, which offers analytics and support in my quest to measure my brand’s level of influence and investigate avenues in which I can improve my scores.

For those of you out there who either do not have profiles on Social Media sites or have several profiles without a thread to tie them all together, I suggest you take some time to figure out what you want people to know about you – then go about doing it.

Some sites I can suggest to get a start are:

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