Personal Brand Building For Under $100

What do you get when you search your name online?

Aw, come on. Of course you’ve looked yourself up on the Internet. Almost half of all Internet users did in 2007. The latest survey puts the number at 59 percent.

And if you really, really haven’t then you may want to retake recruiting 101.

Just as companies no longer are masters of their own brand, neither are you. There are sites to rate teachers, cops, doctors, even parts of your anatomy. Then there are the pictures and comments well-meaning friends have posted about you.

Google yourself and you may find those bleery-eyed conference party photos of you rank higher than than does the whitepaper you authored. Or, you may discover you rank lower than the death notices of others with like names.

PlaceYourNameTo help remedy that there’s It’s a personal marketing service that promises to help users “manage and control what is seen about them when their names are searched online.”

For $50 and a few minutes of your time you get a press release (which you write, they edit) sent to an online newsservice and PlaceYourName submits your name and some bio info and your photo to what it says are four “high ranking websites, blogs, and news portals, viewable in search engine results.”

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For $100, you get double the distribution plus a vanity website of your own.

There’s nothing PlaceYourName will do that you can’t do yourself. But the truth is most people don’t. Sarah Welstead, a Toronto recruiting marketing professional, a few months ago wrote about the importance of building a personal brand. Yesterday, ERE offered a webinar on this topic: “Creating a Personal Brand: Increasing Your Online Presence.” Presented by Toby Nathan of RecruitaStar is the nuts and bolts of how you build a personal brand and it’s archived here.

There’s also a valuable personal branding blog started by Dan Schawbel, a guru of personal branding.

While a service like can get you started — and you may want to consider it and other branding tools like Personavita or VisualCV if you lack the discipline — in order to sustain the effort, you need endurance, and something to offer.

John Zappe is the editor of and a contributing editor of John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

Besides writing for ERE, John consults with staffing firms and employment agencies, providing content and managing their social media programs. He also works with organizations and businesses to assist with audience development and marketing. In his spare time  he can be found hiking in the California mountains or competing in canine agility and obedience competitions.

You can contact him here.


4 Comments on “Personal Brand Building For Under $100

  1. Hi John –

    Thanks for the link – I didn’t even know it was here until I Googled myself today (I needed a screenshot of the first page of my search returns for a presentation – honest!) and this came up in the first page.

    So thanks for that!


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