Last week I had the priviledge of speaking with blog consultant Mike Sansone of Converstations.com and BlogTalkRadio. Mike is one of the organizers of, and a speaker at, SOBCon07 this May in Chicago.
Mike and I talked for quite some time, covering many topics. There certainly were highlights I took away from our conversation.
But one comment Mike made to me stood out. At one point, when we were talking about how we found each other’s blogs, Mike said, “I saw your name come up constantly in blogs I read and comment on. I had to find out who this ‘Dawud Miracle’ was.” (note, not a direct quote)
This moment in our talk really stood out for me. Why? Because that’s exactly how I sign all my comments – Dawud Miracle.
When I first began commenting on blogs I would just leave my name however I thought about typing it at that moment. So there’s comments floating around from Dawud, DawudM, DMiracle as well as Dawud Miracle. If you find any, they’re all me.
But after a few days of commenting I changed my strategy. I quickly realized that to get the most out of my commenting efforts, I needed to sign my comments in a consistent manner. I choose Dawud Miracle over other variations, and over Healthy WebDesign, for a number of reasons.
First I wanted to be identified as a person so I used my name instead of my business name. Second, I wanted to distinguish myself from other commenters so I decided to use my first AND last name. Even with a name like Dawud, I didn’t feel my first name a long gave me enough ‘oomph.’ Doesn’t hurt, too, that my last name is quite unique and often memorable. Third, I wanted to ‘brand myself’ as Dawud Miracle so that as I was more visible around the blogosphere, the recognition of my name would carry more and more weight. And fourth, I knew my commenting efforts would help open the door to relationships with other bloggers. So I wanted to be known for who I am and who I am is Dawud Miracle.
Whenever I leave comments, I pay attention to other commenters as well. I look for names I either know or have seen before. On my blog it’s the same – I look for familiar names. I immediately can recognize Ben Yoskovitz, Dave Starr, Drew McLellan, Doug Karr and Liz Strauss. But I have a harder time knowing who Tony, Sara, Maddy, Karin H., Chris M or Dave are.
Since they comment on my blog frequently, I know who Karin H. and Chris M are. And Dave is friend and mastermind partner. But is ‘Dave’ getting the best return on his commenting efforts? I think not. But if he he began signing his comments as Dave Schoof :: The Disquiet in Men – that would distinguish him. It would create some recognition and help him brand his himself and his blog more effectively.
So how do you brand yourself in the blog comments you leave?