In a social-media crazed, internet browsing society, it seems that precious little is sacred anymore. Every day, a combination of voyeurism and stagecraft can be seen cluttering our news-feed. Many things that we once kept to ourselves are now a veritable free-for-all in the mysterious vortex of the World Wide Web. And not all for the best. Even with increasing internet privacy concerns, consumers continue to put their personal lives on display for all to see. As Mineo (2017) suggests, “In the internet era, consumers seem increasingly resigned to giving up fundamental aspects of their privacy for convenience in using their phones and computers, and have grudgingly accepted that being monitored by corporations and even governments is just a fact of modern life”. Still, amidst the myriad of cat videos, political banter, memes, recipes, and personal photos, there can be seen the emergence of marketing genius. The internet, in conjunction with social media, has become a marketplace where individuals as the product come every day to advertise their personal and professional brand. There are some things that one should consider in terms of exactly what is being advertised when you, as the product, enter the global marketplace.
1.) Can You Be Found?
To see what my personal brand looked like I Googled my name and found everything but me. The search revealed everyone from an artist to an actor’s son, but not me. Now, when I added my current city to my name, I finally found a ruggedly handsome rogue that looked remarkably like me. I utilized two other sources, including Klout, and WebMii. This led to the startling revelation that I will not be going viral anytime soon. While it is better to have no presence than a negative presence, hopefully, my diminished online visibility will one day be replaced with significant civic and academic achievements.