cpd23 – Thing 3: Considering my personal brand

OK, OK, I know. I’m a bit late on this “Thing”, but I think that’s probably a good place to start when thinking about who I am. Because basically, I’m a very busy person, who says yes too often, and finds interesting, distracting, absorbing things everywhere! More on that in a minute.

So – first things first, I did a quick google of my name to see exactly how I come across on the World Wide Web. A Google search for me in the UK finds the following results on the first page:

  1. The journal article version of my MA dissertation on the Emerald publication Aslib Proceedings.
  2. Not me
  3. LinkedIn results page for the three people in the UK with the same name (I appear 2nd)
  4. Not me
  5. Not me
  6. Not me
  7. My Just Giving profile
  8. A set of procedures published on a webpage from work
  9. Not me
  10. Not me

Not too bad. The next page of results produced another 6 results (including a photo of me after a charity run!), another et of work procedures, two of the individual Just Giving pages, a book review (from 2005, but still), and my profile on WhatDoTheyKnow.com. Third page of results includes even more – work things, and the first mention of my CILIP involvement with local Branch.

So what didn’t appear? Well, my Facebook page for a start. I think this is due to my personalised URL for my Facebook page being based on my nickname, a shortened version of my name. Twitter also doesn’t appear, which is more puzzling as my profile does use my full name. (Even a search for my name plus the word “Twitter” didn’t find my profile).

I was pleasantly surprised that this search resulted in these pages as most present my professional life, and the exception of my charitable giving through organised sponsorship is also something I’d like to publicise.

But is it a problem that I don’t have a consistent “brand”. Well, despite my involvement in this particular thing, no, I don’t think it is! I keep my Facebook page for my personal life – my friends and family can choose to follow my professional blog here if they wish (they don’t!), or follow me on Twitter where I might have the odd professional musing. When I first started CPD23, I tried using my original blog. And then I got to “Thing 3” and I rethought that.

My “other” blog had started because I wanted to try blogging, but wasn’t sure what to blog about. I left it blank for a whole year, before deciding just to blog about things I enjoy. This turned out to be mostly baking, sewing, and learning new craft like crochet. So I wasn’t sure whether the CPD stuff would fit. I am a very busy person – as well as the above hobbies I am also a member of an amateur competitive cheerleading and dance team, and my other half is currently living in Leeds studying for an MSc/PhD! I was concerned that if I had more than one blog I wouldn’t keep up with everything. But a chat on Twitter with a fellow info professional (and one of the people responsible for cpd23) convinced me that I probably could manage two blogs.

This blog was born! I decided to use a different platform to the one I use for my “personal” (for want of a better word) blog, partly because I couldn’t work out if I could link another email account, or use a different photo. I wanted a photo of me in my professional life for this one – but I still haven’t got around to asking someone to take one! I will do this soon…

I don’t currently feel the need to align my blog to anything else I have out there, because my Facebook and Pinterest are personal, my Twitter is a mixture, LinkedIn is not something I can brand, and at the moment I am blogging here fairly anonymously (although people who know me would be able to identify me of course). I haven’t yet decided how anonymous this will be as I do want to blog about work stuff which I might not be wise to do publicly (because of sensitive nature of things), but I may experiment with private posts.

This was an interesting exercise – not least because it validates the voyeuristic googling of oneself! I think I am happy with my brand, but I will certainly be more aware of it in the future.

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Filed under cpd23, Work-life balance

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