Using WordPress to Craft Your Personal Brand

Posted March 9, 2011 | View revision history

I gave a brief talk at March’s joint WordPress DC and Hacks/Hackers DC MeetUp on leveraging WordPress to craft your personal brand. Below are slides and a recording of the livestream.

I invite you to watch, but in short, the main takeaways were

Why Brand?

  • In the olden days, people used to be scared to put personal information online; they felt the need to be pseudonymous (see handles like @SparklePrincess87); life online was distinct from life offline.
  • As more of our analog lives became digital, the need for a second identity diminished; we no longer represent ourselves with anonymous screen names, but rather as ourselves.
  • Social networking and mobile computing contributed to this shift by interfacing the online and offline worlds. Today’s radical transparency (e.g., lifecasters posting pictures of their lunch) shows we have come a full 180.
  • We shift from corporate brand associations in the ’50s (e.g., “I work for IBM”) to personal brands today (e.g., “I’m an independent contractor”).
  • Today we all have a unique opportunity to plant a flag on our corner of the internet, take control of our online identity, and declare to the world who we are by crafting a thought-out narrative.
  • Unlike in the real world where you are the only one in control of what you say, online, content has a life of its own — you must be proactive.
  • WordPress makes it dumb simple to tell the world your story.

My five big steps to launching your brand

  1. Grab a domain
  2. Define your personal brand
  3. Start a blog
  4. Socialize your content
  5. Upgrade your résumé

Recording of the livestream

Greg Linch opens by discussing WordPress and Journalism, I begin at 30 minutes 10 seconds

For those interested in the plugins mentioned

Additional Resources

A special thanks to everyone who was able to come out or follow along on the livestream.

Comments? I’d love to hear your thoughts below.


Ben Balter is a Senior Product Manager at GitHub, the world’s largest software development network, where he oversees the platform’s Community and Safety efforts. Named one of the top 25 most influential people in government and technology, Fed50’s Disruptor of the Year, and winner of the Open Source People’s Choice Award, Ben previously served as GitHub’s Government Evangelist, leading the efforts to encourage government at all levels to adopt open source philosophies for code, data, and policy development. More about the author →

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