I was chatting to a high-profile Dubai media professional the other day and his name popped into my head while I was carrying out some web work later that day.
As I often do, I checked the availability of his name as a dot com domain. (For example: georgehopkin.com for George Hopkin). The geek in me insists I do this quite often for people I meet!
The media professional in question has a reasonably rare surname but very common first name, so I was surprised to find that 'hisname.com' was available. I mentioned this in passing to him, but he wasn't impressed.
"What do I need that for?" he asked. "I don't write poetry and I'm not that big a fan of any pop bands."
The implication being that 'yourname.com' is only good for angst-ridden teenagers who want to put their dreary diaries online for friends and family to read (or not).
But think about it: your name is your own personal brand. People are 'Googling' you all the time, believe me, and if you want to retain control over the information found when they carry out this search, storing it at 'yourname.com' is a terrific idea.
Those who are members of online business networks such as Ryze.com and openBC.com are already convinced of the benefits of putting their information 'out there'. And take a look at the runaway success of MySpace.com - the next generation of kids will never know a time when having personal info online felt a bit creepy.
And that dreary online diary for the benefit of friends and family? Well, that sounds very much like a blog, and blogs have evolved into a fantastic (and cheap) marketing and communications tool for CEOs. So even if you don't feel like blogging about pop bands and poetry, you can still put a blog to good business use.
It won't stop there either. Personal podcasts (essentially audio diaries) are growing in popularity and video is also creeping into the mix. To see this in action take a look at YouTube.com (which I predict will get snapped up by a major player like Google in the near future).
So consider checking if 'yourname.com' is available. If it is, consider securing it - don't forget there are almost certainly other people out there with the same name, so if you don't do it, someone else will!
And if it is available and you do secure it, a blog (call it an 'online journal' if the word blog makes you wince) might help find you your next big business contact, contract or job.
The Dubai media professional was right about one thing, though. We can all probably do without hearing more bad poetry.
Some useful links:
Check if yourname.com is available: http://www.register.com
Start a blog: http://www.blogger.com
"Broadcast yourself": http://www.youtube.com
[+] Tags: George Hopkin