Welcome to Hayden Koch’s digital branding adventure.
As we all dive deeper into a digital revolution, something of utmost importance is severely overlooked: having a slick, powerful, and appeasing personal online brand.
This series will not be on why it is important to own and maintain your online brand. It is primarily to track my efforts in detail as I attempt to own my Google search brand, Hayden Koch.
The goal: owning the first three pages of Google search for “Hayden Koch”
While the process is already begun, this post marks full-throttle efforts to create a 3-page brand for my personal name on line.
Below, I will outline my main findings so far on the specific platforms. Numbers 1-15 are pages that are already ranking; the next list are pages in process.
Goal: 30 Hayden Koch properties listings 1-30
Currently: 15 Hayden Koch properties listings 1-30
Introducing the platforms
Google+ was a total failure. They even admitted it themselves. But that doesn’t stop them from being biased. Google still does rank their own pages well. A more flamboyant Facebook, it is a social posting platform with decent information boxes and images. Creating a collection, as noted above, is a relatively new feature that will be tested for SEO value. Stickiness of the listing is a bit of a concern, which drops it to a mid-tier page. Ranking potential: 7/10.
LinkedIn is KING. If you rearrange the letters you can spell KING somewhere. Uh.. close enough. It goes without saying that Google loves LinkedIn. With unlimited potential for adding content and and incredibly trusted website in LinkedIn, having a strong page is essential in any individual (or company, which I’ll discuss in another blog post). Ranking potential: 10/10.
Facebook was great before, but a recent change allows for personal profiles to showcase expanded interests, photos, and a long about section. Also great for public figures, professionals, and brands. Ranking potential: 9/10
Twitter is a must-have for any individual or business brand. Like Facebook, this is what any searcher will expect a brand to have. Deck yours out and brand it well. To get it to the first page, it does need to be established in both activity and age. One of the primary pages I recommend to build up and spend time on. Ranking potential: 9/10.
Medium is a newer one that has shown great potential. A slick, clean blog posting site with unlimited content opportunities. Google loves this site because there isn’t much clutter. Will come back and update on the potential of this. But for now, ranking potential: 7/10.
Vimeo has charged in as a top competitor to YouTube, occupying a unique segment of the online video market. With that has came great authority building on search engines. As a more socially-friendly video platform, keeping the page active is fairly simple, all while allowing essentially unlimited video content and a 400-500 word biography. I’d consider Vimeo mid tier-one and essential for any business or individual looking to build an online brand. Ranking potential: 8/10
You may never have heard of Crunchbase, but this platform is an absolute powerhouse for ORM. The domain is incredibly powerful – and even without much content – your individual or business page can reach the top of the fold. As long as you spell your name correctly, you have a valuable page ranking almost immediately. And if you so need to add content, there is an abundance of opportunity including: social media, lengthy biographies, images, videos, educational information, jobs, news, memberships, and more. Ranking potential: 10/10.
Flickr is an established photo-sharing platform that’s now over 10 years old. While the age of the domain does help its ranking potential (Google has established trust for a long time in “internet years”), the platform boasts a dynamic opportunity for search engine value with image sharing, photo albums, tags, groups, and profile optimizations. The best part is that you don’t even have to go out of your way to build your page. If you connect your account to say, your iPhone, your page will automatically be FULL of content. Since written content is not possible, focus on consistently growing your page with new images and look to get at least a few hundred. Ranking potential: 6/10.
I had the pleasure of being introduced to Pinterest about a year and a half ago, and I’ve grown to really appreciate it of late. While I don’t precisely fit with the target demographic, there is something for everyone. Personally, I use it as a simple tool for gathering and organizing ideas. For individuals, I’d always recommend creating a Pinterest page; you can grow it al natural, just by browsing the web and saving your favorite topics, ideas, sites, images, videos, you get the gist. For businesses, the effectiveness of the page depends on your industry. I’d be happy to consult with you on if Pinterest is an effective choice for you business. The biggest downside of Pinterest is the lack of written content opportunities, that Google looks for in ranking pages in the top 5 listings. Nonetheless – Pinterest has a great trust value and plenty of ranking opportunity for a low page 1 / solid page 2 site. Ranking potential: 6/10 (Individuals 7/10, Businesses 5/10)
About.me recently went through website changes that diminished search value, but I expect it to be temporary. This site is recommended for all individuals as a basic biography platform, despite it slightly falling short of its high expectations (in terms of overall success as a website). I’ll fork over the $48/yr and test out the premium about.me service that allows for further customization and an optimized .me domain. For now, ranking potential: 6/10
SoundCloud has been going through several changes, both externally and internally as a company. Who knows what the future holds, but SoundCloud remains a solid profile site to own as you build your online brand. If you don’t like music, there are great podcasts, audio blogs, and audiobooks for you to engulf in. Share tracks, follow artists, create playlists, and Google will certainly like you. They also allow you a 500 word biography for kicks. Ranking potential: 7/10