Gravatars -A Useful Tool For Marketers

I had an e-mail from one of my regular followers this past week asking about how to get their photo to show when posting comments on the various blogs that they follow. I am sure that you have seen them before and to get a picture to show automatically every time you post a comment is really easy to do. It is all done at a site called Gravatar.com… and , like all the best things in this world, it’s free!

The little picture is called an avatar, which according to the dictionary is “a graphical image that represents a person“. What Gravatar.com does is make the image that you select to represent you available everywhere across the Internet… a Globally Recognized AVATAR. The advantages of using a gravatar are obvious, especially if you are an Internet marketer of any sort. It helps you build your brand.

Let me step you through the process of setting up your own gravatar. The first thing you will need to have available is a suitable picture that you are happy to use as the image to represent you on possibly thousands of websites. I think that the image you select is important. Even though you can change the image as often as you like I think that, when it comes to building a brand, consistency is important.

Think about any major brand you care to name. I suggest that their branding has not changed very much, if at all, in the past 20 years. For example, Nike started using the “swoosh” design in 1972. In those days it had the word “Nike” inside the “swoosh”. In 1995 the word was removed and the “swoosh” has stood on its own until today. Coca Cola is another example that immediately springs to mind.

So the first thing I suggest is to choose your image carefully so that it can be used to a very long time to come. The second comment about the choice of your image that I would make is unless you market your business under a name that is not your own name use a photo (or at least a recognizable caricature) of you. As Internet marketers most of us brand our businesses using our names so extend that line of thinking to your gravatar.

Now that you have your picture ready head over to gravatar.com and register for a free account. Fill in the various fields and upload your picture… it is all very easy and very intuitive. Many people just set up a basic profile at gravatar.com but I recommend that you fill in as much detail as possible (including every e-mail address that you use). The reason that you want a good profile here is that when you leave a comment on my blog any of my readers can hover over your gravatar and see a basic profile for you. However if they click on it they are taken to your full profile on gravatar.com… and that’s just pure gold!

Enter your Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ accounts so that your profile is complete and tells the full story. Don’t forget your websites and a small comment about who you are and what you do. Once this has been done you are good to go. Now what you want to do is leave a comment here on this site and, once I approve it, your gravatar will automatically appear beside your comment. You have to admit that it looks so much better than the generic placeholder image.

Just a short post this week. I do encourage you to set up your gravatar and to leave a comment. You are also welcome to share this information with your own readers as well.

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