Laura Ries has some great thoughts about managing “brand you” that I think are relevant to blogging, especially if you are blogging about a topic that has to do with your career. Laura writes:
“The most successful business people consider themselves a brand and market themselves according. And like product brands, it’s not enough to just be well-known. You also have to stand for something in the minds of other people.”
There are many examples where business people have managed their brand successfully via blogs, like Steve Rubel (Micro Persuasion) = Blogs and PR and Åsk Wäppling aka Dabitch (Adland) = Advertising to name just two in my own field of interest.
If you take Laura’s advice and apply them to professional blogging it might look like this:
1. Do[es] you[r] [blog] have the right brand name?
With 4-5 million blogs it is getting harder and harder to give your blog a unique brand that can also help in positioning you as a thought leader in a certain field. That is especially true if you want to host your blog at Blogspot.com where many good names are already taken. The obvious choice to name the brand after yourself is of course ok as long as you don’t share names with thousands of others.
2. Narrow the focus, don’t try to be great at everything.
Many bloggers are commenting on a variety of topics, and do it with style. Erik Stattin is one good local example. But for most of us, focusing means that it’s easier to carve out a niche where you can be #1. When blogs become ubiquitous it will be hard for general blogs to gain readers.
3. Use PR to build your brand.
Blogging can generate publicity for yourself our your company, especially if you are good at creating original content and not just refer to existing information in media without adding your [expert] opinion.