What about Self Marketing and Personal Branding?
This is an introductory look at Self Marketing, self-publishing, personal branding online, personal SEO, or whatever you want to call it. Let’s examine how this practice can benefit an individual seeking to market themselves.
I’ll define what the concept is, how we should apply it, and who it's for.
What is Self Marketing really about?
At its basic level, I would consider Self Marketing to be "proactively solving and optimizing for what happens when someone searches for your name online".
Google is obviously one of the first places to search for things or for people that we're curious about. This is why we always think in terms of we can be seen on Google first. There are loads of other social networks and websites to consider additionally; Facebook, YouTube, Linkedin, Instagram, etc. But remember, often times the content that lives on these platform feed into Google search results.
So, what do we do about Self Marketing?
How do we begin to start looking at what's on the end of that Google search term for our name, plus maybe our area or our industry?
First, we just gotta take a look and Google your name, like "Colton James Townsend". I'll warn you right off the bat that searching on your own devices will likely skew the results based on your personal settings and history. There are ways to run unpersonalized search queries, which we'll discuss in another post.
Look at what results for a search of "Your Full Name". Are you showing up? Do you like the results?
There could be multiple problems that arise on your Google Search Results Page:
- You’re not showing up at all
- What shows up is embarrassing, misleading, unwanted, or should be private
- Someone else is beating you for your own name
In order to start overcoming these challenges, the most straightforward solution is to outrank it with some of your own content. This means you need to publish content! Videos, web pages, articles, images, any kind of media you produce and publish help to supply Google search results with positive, self branded content.
So, in a nutshell, self-branding is being your best self on the end of online search result. You accomplish this by putting out lots of bits of your own content.
The process of content generation and distribution is a process I will discuss at length if you follow my work and this website. I seek to answer the question: "How can we start providing personal content easily, in a way that best represents ourselves and our interests in connecting with the right people online?"
People are going to search for you. If you've piqued their interest in your real world encounters and other marketing efforts, they'll get curious at some point.
Go out into the world and shake hands, pass out business cards, and get your name out there. Do that AND supply a wealth of personally branded Self Marketing material for those who search for you later. Why not supply them with a solid amount of informative, interesting, useful content? Delight and impress them before they even pick up the phone or email to follow up with you.
Who is Self Marketing For?
Honestly, everyone who expects to be “Googled” can benefit from a Self Marketing practice. Whether you’re a freelance business owner, applying for a new job, or
It’s our duty as professionals to be well represented online with the content we want to be associated with our good names. We can’t settle for underrepresentation or perhaps even damaging misrepresentation. Imagine owning a stand-out business that loses in the search rankings to some local blogger’s opinion piece of who just wanted to rip on you because they they your sign looks stupid. Those kind of problems do happen!
We represent ourselves well, offer information about ourselves and our area of expertise, and produce all of that content in a way that’s uniquely ours.
Let’s focus in 2020 on our Self Marketing efforts! More to come, I’m sure!