I want to have a website to showcase my personal brand. Should I set up a free site on Tumblr or About.me, focus on my own site and hosting, or something else — and why?
The following answers are provided by the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched StartupCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.
1. Focus on Your Own Site
You’re building your brand across the course of your entire career, and that can often last more than 50 years. Whatever the hottest service is now will no longer be hot in five years, let alone 50. Skip one lunch out, and buy a $10 domain name so you can control its content and shape it however you like.
- John Rood, Next Step Test Preparation
2. Control Your Own Brand
Never give up control over your personal brand; it’s the only thing you get to keep in life. Using free sites to help promote your brand is fine, but it’s absolutely necessary to have control of your own website. Plus, when done professionally, it shows you are serious about your brand. Invest in your brand by investing in your own personal website.
- Mark Cenicola, BannerView.com
3. Use Your Own Site
Accurate or not, dot-com sites always appear more professional than identical sites on Tumblr or other subdomain sites. Create your own dot-com, and you’ll appear as professional as can be.
- Brennan White, Watchtower
4. Try Medium
If you’re a writer, Medium is an increasingly well-respected way to showcase your thinking and interests. It’s also easy to set up and even easier to make look good, which can be tough on Tumblr or about.me. Ultimately, it depends on the type of content you’re interested in producing.
- Derek Flanzraich, Greatist
5. Host Your Own Site
If you don’t have a website, no one is going to find you. If your site is on Tumblr, WordPress, about.me or something similar, you don’t own the data. Do you want to own your own data? Yes, so get your own site, and host it. This should only cost you $100 per year.
- John Rampton, Adogy
6. Get Your Own Website
Setting up a professional site these days takes less than an hour and less than $100. I helped a friend do so, and we spent $50. We even purchased a new WordPress theme and launched it in about 45 minutes. Here’s all you need — a domain name, hosting, WordPress, a theme and a little content to put on your site. You can always upgrade the various pieces later if you want to spend more.
- Thursday Bram, Hyper Modern Consulting
7. Build a Sleek Site
Without a doubt, set one up on about.me, Flavors.me, Squarespace or a similar site. Then, purchase your own personal dot-com domain name if available. These services make your website look extremely professional at a low cost and are easy to use. You will be able to link to all your social media profiles and incorporate a blog to help grow your personal brand even further.
- Jason Grill, JGrill Media | Sock 101
8. Start With LinkedIn
It will be easier to rank a LinkedIn page on search engines than a self-hosted site, especially if your name is common. It may make sense down the road to set up a site and try to get it to rank, but it’s much more efficient to get a LinkedIn ranking first.
- Josh Weiss, Bluegala
9. Control Your Own Branding
I believe the best solution for the long run is to focus on your website. I believe this is true for various marketing reasons, but most importantly, for empowering your brand.
- Hassan Bawab, Magic Logix