Building a Personal or Professional Brand on the Web – Part 1

So, you know that there are a lot of things out there on the Web that the kids are using these days to create their own Web presence, and you are wondering how to go about creating your own personal or small business “brand”.  I’ve been advising a few friends and colleagues on this lately, and it seemed like a good series of posts could come out of it.  In this and the posts to follow, I’ll talk about what a Web “brand” even means and some of the ways you can go about building one.

First of all, as with almost all things, you need to have a strategy.  What *is* your personal brand, anyway?  One person I’m working with is a fiction writer, a few others are artists, another is starting her own small consulting company, and yet another is a children’s clothing designer.  There’s no “one size fits all” answer to what a personal brand for each of these talented folks means.

Here are some questions to ponder:

  • How do you want to be known?
  • Does your brand require you to be seen as tech savvy or would that be a handicap?
  • Do you want your personal and professional brands to be separate or integrated?
  • Does your brand need to have a certain “look”?
  • How much time do you have to spend on your brand?  (Should you outsource your brand?)
  • How much money do you want to spend on your brand?

If you are part of a large organization, then you have teams of people to think all of this through for you; if you are an individual or a small business, then you’re going to have to figure it out for yourself or hire someone who can help you think it though.

Next up in Part 2: Thinking through the different Web “channels” which you can use to drive your brand.