I bought this domain name on a whim.
It’s too bad that annadaugherty.com was already taken, but whoever is camping out that domain name I wish you lots of luck and success.
So how am I going to use this site? Easy. To sell my personal brand.
Branding Yourself is Difficult.
Throughout the course of my career in email marketing and inbound marketing, I’ve come to learn a few things. But the most important thing I’ve learned is to be my own personal product, and to become my own best advocate.
When you craft yourself into a product, you completely understand your strengths and weaknesses, and it becomes much easier to sell yourself.
As a marketer, your brand is your business. In the bleep-bloop world of the internet, your name is your potential employer or customer’s first interaction with your personal brand. If the search rankings for your name return some rather unfavorable results, who knows what crazy assumptions your customers can have regarding your product.
Even if the search rankings aren’t full of mugshots, it’s still a great idea to claim your rightful spot at the top of the SERPs.
That’s why I’ve started this blog. My goal is to bring awareness to the Anna Daugherty brand, and to show myself off as an awesome inbound marketing specialist who can deliver results.
So Where Do I Begin?
The short answer is that I start at the bottom.
I’ve chosen 9 keywords that I would like to target for my own personal brand. In this blog post on choosing personal brand keywords, I discuss how to choose keywords for yourself based on your personal strengths and goals.
So how does my site rank for these keywords?
As you can see, my site currently doesn’t rank in the top 10 for any of my chosen keywords. Fortunately for me, the keywords I’ve chosen have a lot of leeway.
According to this keyword difficulty tool, there should be little difficulty ranking organically in the search results for these keywords because, except for one, they don’t appear to be highly competitive.
With a little time, effort, and perhaps a bit of charm, I’m sure that I will start to see my website climb in the SERPs for my chosen keywords.
What’s My Competition?
I’ve decided that my top three personal branding keywords are “anna daugherty,” “inbound marketing kalamazoo,” and “email marketing kalamazoo.” These keywords most accurately reflect my current brand, strengths, and location.
My goal is for any recruiter or potential employer who searches these terms to come across my blog and think, “Gee, this lady knows her business.”
So let’s see what’s already out there.
Keyword: “anna daugherty”
Oh hey, that’s me!
Not a bad start. LinkedIn is an excellent way to show off my skills and accomplishments.
I would like annadaugherty.net to rank #1 for the keyword “anna daugherty,” but I will also accept a top 3 ranking if it means my LinkedIn profile is also there.
Keyword: “inbound marketing kalamazoo”
Right away I see a lot of potential for making connections with the HUG Kalamazoo inbound marketing group. They host meet-ups where I can network with other locals in my field.
I also see a profile for one of the managers of the HUG Kalamazoo inbound marketing group, Dan Moyle. This is a great opportunity to reach out to him to see if he has any tips or ideas to share about the Kalamazoo inbound marketing scene. If he has a blog, we might also have valuable content to share with each other.
Because there are several repeated results, gaining organic ranking for this keyword should be a snap.
Keyword: “email marketing kalamazoo”
Hmm. This might be more difficult.
The rankings for “email marketing kalamazoo” return several marketing agencies. These usually have more authority, whether that’s from awards they’ve won or backlinks from their clients.
I see this as an opportunity to network, as well. Who better to market my personal brand to than a Kalamazoo agency that needs talented email marketers?
So How Will I Get There?
I know that the way to earn my place in the top of the organic results for my keywords is to focus on three things: content, outreach, and advocacy.
Content will be the easy part. I’ve got a lot to say about myself and my career path.
Outreach will also be pretty easy. I know my audience, and I understand the principles of respectful blogger and media relations, as well as how to use social media to leverage exposure for my content.
Advocacy might be the most difficult part of this entire experiment. One of the best ways to earn rankings is to secure authoritative backlinks from sites that believe in your content and want to share it with their readers. And right now, my site isn’t looking so hot in the authority department.
Convincing high-authority blogs that my content is worthwhile will be where both my content and outreach come in handy. Add a little bit of charm into the mix, and I’m hoping that others will buy into my personal brand and start linking to me.
Once that happens, I should start to see my domain authority score climb, which in turn will affect my organic search rankings, depending on which content is linked.
This blog post is just the first of many that will explore my personal brand. Stick around and follow me as I attempt to climb Mount Search Engine to earn my place at the top of the SERPs.
Are you looking for a Kalamazoo or Grand Rapids area email marketing or inbound marketing specialist to take your business to the next level? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org