How Branding Yourself First Launches A Platform
I have been using the internet to market my websites for years at this point. It wasn’t until about a year ago that I had learned that I was using it all wrong. It was a depressing conclusion as well as an invigorating realization. I have been failing to realize no one cares about my websites because I am a nobody. I was under the assumption that I, Adam Mulholland, was popular because people used my websites. The truth is that no one cared who I was because I was building backwards and not forwards. This means that I wasn’t popular first, so my brands suffered. It’s how most websites in this day and age find success. These days unless your app or site solves such an amazing problem you end up failing.
All of this resulted in me finally doing something serious with my blog. I also needed more brand reach so I podcasted more, and I am about to start doing video. I am finally excited to be me on the internet because I am finally doing things right.
Why Does It Matter
The harsh reality is that the internet is just like the days that we grew up without it. In school, you were either popular or not. If you were popular, you could get a girlfriend, a date to the prom, or that coveted spot in the yearbook as “Most Class Spirit”. Thinking back at those memories really hammers home the notion of how dumb they are. No matter how I feel about it doesn’t negate the fact that it’s the harsh reality. The exact same social dynamics apply to the internet and decides what is popular and what is not.
In every niche there are those that we call movers and shakers. People know them and it’s because of how popular they are and how many other people know them. Elon Musk got in early with Paypal because it solved a major problem. Then people knew him. He was able to leverage his money with his fame and apply them to an even more successful brands. He is the brand, and SpaceX, Tesla, and his other ventures are a result of his brand. I have no doubt that my thought process here can be argued until the wee hours of the morning. I think we can at least understand what I am driving at here though.
If not, then I will repeat it one more time since it’s worth it. You are the brand. Your assets are an extension of your brand. If you do not grow in this manner then you have a very steep climb to achieve even mediocre success. We don’t do this to be average though. If you are like me, you won’t stop until you are #1.
Managing the Brand
If each of us are the brand, what we can do to build it? How do we start? Well, let me tell you a bit of a story first. I was having lunch with a good friend of mine, Clay, and I was explaining this theory to him over a delicious lunch at the local Chili’s. Once I explained this “I am the brand” theory, I asked him if he had owned Clay Croker .com or not? His answer was no. It was exactly as I had thought! How does an entrepreneur such as himself not even take the first step to building his own brand? So, I challenged him to go home and buy it right away and he later confirmed that the exchange between himself and GoDaddy had taken place a few days prior to me writing this.
So needless to say, he understood the power of what I was getting at. We will be building his site shortly, but more importantly, he now can build his digital brand so he can leverage his future projects against it! He will be doing this process the correct way from now on. The website is home base. You can’t do anything else without it because it’s the digital representation of yourself.
To manage our digital brand we need to buy our domain. This is simply your name .com. My rule of thumb is that if you cannot own the .com, you don’t own anyone. You never buy the .me and rock it. That’s not only gross, but irresponsible for your brand. Our domain can be built using your preferred hosting, and WordPress such as my site, or another CMS.
Once you have built your site, themed it correctly, and have written content, you can now go out and brag about it all over social. I am not going to get into social in this post, but in others I go well enough into the weeds about it. You need to focus on home first. I could say this a million times and there will be plenty of people who will never execute it. If you are one that has no idea how to build your website, then let me know and I will be happy to help you.
TL;dr: Buy a Domain (Your Name .com) > Find a host > Install WordPress > Build Content > Brand It
NOTE: If you found me through Quora, you can thank Clay for telling me I needed to be on there and owning it. Needlessly to say, I am owning it.
We need to dig deep and find it in ourselves to start at home and then launch a career on the internet. You can’t just have a facebook account or a LinkedIn profile. Sure, those help, but a serious website that is “ourselves.com” is deeper and people with money to spend or someone that will hire you will respect you even more. There are plenty who make it and create their site later, but if you are reading this then you are not one of them. You are more like me, but just don’t know how to start.
I don’t have anything to sell except motivation for you to getting going and build something that matters. The biggest problem with many people who want to do something is they don’t execute and make something. If creating home is too hard for you then let me know. I will do it with you or for you, but then I will have something to sell…my time. The point of this isn’t to find me work. It’s for you to start hustling and doing more with your brand.
I have decided that I will include a Coggle of my thoughts on each post if it’s relevant to what I am trying to accomplish. Sometimes it is and sometimes it’s not. The biggest part of this graphic besides hoping you will steal it and share it with everyone you know, is that you have to build paths to your brand that then comes together through structure. This is something I am particularly bad at. I need more structure in my life, or do I?