Thursday, December 29, 2011

Markting Idea: Branding Yourself When You Have a Common Name

How can you market or brand yourself on the Internet?

It is pretty easy to do if you have a less common name, like I do (Chris Wechner).  Mostly, I can put up things, and I just have to work to try managing which of all of those things people see on Page 1, Page 2, and possibly Page 3.

I commented on some of this earlier.

New Opportunity

Recently, someone approached me about marketing his own website, using a search phrase of his own name.  For example, John Doe wants his website, called, to rank on the keyword search phrase "john doe."

The problem is that John Doe is a really common name.  That means there could be a lot of competition.

In this specific person's case, he is competing against a somewhat well-known (but not too popular musician, an evangelist, and a former actor.

The Problem

So this person has a business, but the service that he provides is not nearly as mainstream as these other things.

So he might not ever leapfrog over these people.

Is it worth the fight?

Sometimes, we go into a fight, and we know that we can win.  Other times, we know to avoid a particular fight, because we know that we have no chance of winning.

Then there are times when we don't really know whether we can win the fight.  At that point, we have to decide whether it is worth the hassle and effort--and risk of losing--to determine whether we want to start fighting.

Within the Internet world, the risk of losing is not physical.  Nobody is going to punch us.  Nobody is going to send us into our room for punishment.

We only risk losing our time and energy.

So if we think that a "win" will help us make more money, become more marketable, or allow us to do something else we really want, GO FOR IT.

Just start fighting.  You won't always win, but the worst consequences are not very bad--I don't think.

This is true, only if you REALLY want it.  Otherwise, don't bother.  You'll just quit when things get tough, anyway.  (Note: We all have areas where this is true.  Don't beat up yourself for not caring when you really don't.  Just walk away!)

The "Fighting" Plan

However, if you DO really want to win this battle of ranking for your own name (when you have a common name), here are some things that I would do.

1. Look at the DOMAIN (URL) of my own website.

Does my website URL (Domain) have my name in it--somewhere?

Ideally, you can get, but you might have to append something to it, like

Is the website a

The website does not have to be a dot-com, but it will probably help you.

Yes, you can get things like or, but those usually compare less favorably to a URL.

Don't even bother getting something like or

With enough work, you can possibly get these to rank, also, but why purposely give yourself extra work.

2. Look at my own website.

Do I have my name all over the website?

Many people create their own website, and barely mention their name.  They might have their name in the URL, the Title, and possibly somewhere in the first paragraph--if not the first sentence.

Remind Google that this webpage is about John Doe.  Mention John Doe plenty of times.  When it comes to helping Google index your site for what you want, Google still needs a lot of help.  Give Google that help--list your name many times throughout your website pages.

3. Check my backlinks to my website.

Do you have lots of backlinks from other websites to your website page?

Are these links coming from places that are associated with things and ideas that really represents you, or are you a muscle man getting all sorts of links from things like goat breastfeeding sites?

It really helps if several of these other websites are also about you--with your name mentioned lots of times within them.

4. Check the anchor text to my backlinks.

When you see backlinks to your website from other websites, what types of (anchor text) words are being used to link to your site?

Do you have anchor text like "John Doe" or "John Doe is a great body builder," or do you have mostly links that say things, like "Click HERE?"

If you own the websites with these backlinks, start changing them.

If you don't own the website, see whether you can contact the website owners to have them make some adjustments.  You can't control what they put on their websites, but do what you can to let them know that it is important to you.  They certainly aren't going to change anything to help you if they don't even realize what help you need.

Doing these things will not guarantee that you'll take back the search results for your name.  For instance, you will probably never overtake "Michael Jordan" or "Michael Jackson."

However, you will be way ahead of most of your other competition, especially if you are just competing against many other amateurs.

How many of these other people are willing to do these things I just suggested?

The most important question is whether YOU are willing to do those things.

Is it really that important to you?  Is it really worth the fight?

If so, you just got the coaching that you need.  Good luck, and remember to protect your face.

To see more Marketing Ideas, visit Chris' Marketing Ideas.

To visit The Ultimate Analyst company website click HERE.

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