How to Stand Out Online with a Common Name

It was Shakespeare who wrote “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose, by any other name would smell as sweet”; but perhaps the great bard failed to foresee a future in which the uniqueness of your name determined if you stood out in a crowded space or just blended into the vast ocean of anonymity. Today, with the sheer numbers of people who are online, it would take a unique name to stand out on search engine lists. But then, it’s not just your name that determines who you are, as anyone who has achieved fame (or notoriety) on the web will tell you; it’s also what you do and how well you do it that get you noticed.

There’s no such thing as bad publicity as any PR person would tell you – if you have it, flaunt it even if it’s not your most positive asset; all you need to do is get tongues wagging for people to remember you. Just look at all the scandals that travel like lightning through the Internet grapevine – they’re the fastest and most definite ways to make the news. However, if you’re looking to make a name for yourself on a positive note, then you have to work on achieving this through a different angle.

It’s not easy to stand out in a crowded place like the Internet unless you’re already a celebrity or well-established with your own domain name. If you’re a late starter, here are a few tips to help you stand out online even though you share your name with a million others:

  • Piggyback on controversy: You don’t have to create controversy, but you can learn how to use it to your advantage. For example, if the net is all agog with a scandal, use this news to boost your blog or social network profile. Don’t just say the same things that others are saying; instead, find a new angle to work on and focus on making your copy as interesting and unique as possible.
  • Provide information: Everybody loves freebies, so if you can use your online space to promote deals and bargains, provide relevant and timely information, and generally give people something in return (tangible or intangible) for visiting your site, you could make a name for yourself in the online world.
  • Keep it fresh: And finally, no one likes stale content, so keep your online space as fresh as possible with regular updates that are both interesting and entertaining. The success of this strategy depends to a large extent on the niche your blog is in and in how knowledgeable you are in the subject.

Admittedly, it’s a pretty uphill task to make a mark for yourself among the millions of people online, especially if you’re burdened (or blessed) with a name that’s as common as a weed in a garden; however, with just a little planning and application, you can ensure that your voice is heard even above the regular online din.

This guest post is contributed by Evelyn Dugan, who writes on the site earn a degree online. Contact Evelyn at her email id: evelyn.dugan83[at]gmail[.]com.