I consider my name to be my brand.
I won’t attach it to anything I don’t believe in or like.
I believe everyone should take care to closely guard their reputations and establish themselves in a light they find most flattering and beneficial to their overall goals.
With so much easily accessible on the Internet, people should grab the bull by the horns and have a say in what others are reading about them online.
By constructing a personal brand, the Internet can be helpful, not detrimental, in attaining life’s goals.
It goes without saying to be careful about what you say in forums, chat rooms and comment fields.
Equally so, don’t allow pictures depicting you doing unsavory things to be posted online with your name attached or tagged.
I suggest going one step past being cautious and being proactive.
Create the brand yourself, rather than let the ways of the Web construct it.
Since I began in journalism, I branded my opinion writing under the named “Voice Of The Vogts,” which is the title of this blog.
In every paper I have worked for, my columns and opinion pieces have run under that title, so it only makes sense that I go further to closely associate that phrase with the thoughts, ideas and opinions of me, Todd Vogts.
Therefore, this blog and all of my opinions and musings can be found via a dedicated domain name and Web link.
By typing in www.voiceofthevogts.com, Internet users will be automatically redirected to my blog.
Ideally, the domain would go to a complete site and not a free blogging system, which is the plan to have happen eventually.
For now though, the domain serves as just avenue for people surfing the information highway to find “the word according to Todd.”
Of course, sometimes I don’t update the blog as often as I would like.
Not to worry, though. The Vogts brand has a solution.
It is called Twitter, and it is a micro-blogging platform that allows users 140 characters to answer the simple question of what they are doing.
I update my Twitter account often, via both the Internet and my BlackBerry.
Doing so keeps all of my followers up-to-date on what is going on in my world, and every time I update, it updates my status on the social-networking site Facebook.
To allow people easier access to my Tweets, I have extended the Vogts brand toward that micro-blogging arena.
Now, by navigating to www.toddtwitters.com, my updates and off-handed comments can be readily enjoyed.
However, the Vogts name is not just associated with the journalism world.
It is also closely connected with entrepreneurship.
When I turned 18 years old, I started Lucky Se7en Mobile DJ Services, and I have been running the successful business ever since.
I provide music and emcee skills for everything from school dances, to weddings, to birthday parties and anything in between.
As graduation from Wichita (Kan.) State University approached, I considered walking away from the business.
I have decided against that for just now, so I figure it is time to increase the brand of that venture as well.
Now, interested parties can easily find my music services online by pointing their browsers to www.lucky7dj.com.
My rates and availability can be found there, so if you are looking for a DJ, look no farther because “getting Lucky is only part of it!”
By belief that personal branding is exponentially important has led me to create several other ways for people to get in touch with me besides these newest ones outlined above.
Links to all my ventures can be found at www.vogtsworld.com.
My professional site that is essentially an online portfolio is located at www.toddvogts.com.
My presence online is strong, but it can be stronger.
Little of my personal life is not out on the Internet for everyone to peruse, but I could be more open.
I’m not a branding expert, but I believe I have been well served by my attempts to make it easier for people to find and contact me.
I wish anyone who wishes to take my advice lots of luck.
Let me know how it turns out, and check back here often to see how my future branding efforts unfold.
And I assure you I do have a few more cards up my sleeve.