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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Branding Yourself

In an online community, it's important to broadcast yourself the same way through all of your platforms. In the Wizard101 Community, for instance, you should choose one wizard name and stick with it. Avatars can be different across the map, sure, but if you really want to build recognition it's important to build your own "brand" that you can be proud of. Some brands only require a name (aka The Friendly Necromancer) to have everyone on board as to who you're talking about.  Some involve a certain style about them or the pictures they use. Some (like mine) try to tie everything together.

By "brand" I mean something easily identifiable as YOU.  Changing your name constantly on Twitter can make it difficult for followers to know who they're following.

My brand involves a lot of recycling images and colors. My Avatar for Blogger, Wizard101 Central, Diary of a Wizard ConnectX, my Wizard101 Facebook, Wizard101 Twitter, and Wizard101 Google+ all use the same base image. My Twitter one always has the "Support Diarykids Twibbon" on it, but you can still see that it's me. My Signature on Wizard101  Central is made to match the current avatar. I've taken it a step further now, even. I'll update my Header here whenever I create a new set of Avatar and Signature pictures. My Google+ and Facebook cover banners will be getting updates at the same time. I've chosen a specific orange and a specific brown that I'll be using (for now, and it's subject to change) in everything that I do, along with choosing a specific font.

But that's just me. If you're random and like having all kinds of different things going on, that's not necessarily a bad thing. That's your brand, just like I have mine. Make it you. Good branding doesn't have to be cookie-cutter and perfectly matched up. Good branding says "Hi. This is something that [YourNameHere] did." and makes it fully obvious what else goes with your stuff. I find that easiest by giving it a common thread.

Be it a name, a color scheme, a general font or picture, or any combination of those. Make it you, because you're the only you the world has.

Your Friend Always,
John Lifeglen

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