Becoming an influencer will often mean creating a personal brand. A personal brand is a brand that places you as the creator front and center. That means that you’ll be using your name on the website, on the social media accounts, and in any marketing. This is one of the smartest decisions you can make from a business standpoint, as it will help to make you seem more like a “real person” and far more accessible.
People will therefore be more likely to order your services or products, because they’ll feel as though they know you and they’ll be able to get a response from you should anything goes wrong.
But this strategy is not for everyone.
When you create your social media account or blog using your own name as your branding, you might find that this makes you feel somewhat anxious. Many people are shy to put themselves out there, and might even worry about security and privacy issues.
This is something that you should aim to overcome. After all, if you are too shy for your friends to see your content and know it is yours, then there is a good chance that you need to rethink your strategy!
But there are genuine occasions where using your own name might not be ideal. In these circumstances you have a few options:
Create a “screen name.” This can be an obvious username you might pick for YouTube or Instagram that is used in addition to your real name – you then make your real name harder to find.
Use a pseudonym. There is no reason this can’t work – just make sure it is believable. Of course things like WhoIs information might give you away though.
Create a brand name but make yourself more prominent. A good example of this is Pat Flynn, who is the owner of SmartPassiveIncome.com. That website is a brand in itself, but Pat is also “known” to the users.
Create a brand that is the “influencer.” This is much harder to do, but is achievable if you are smart and lucky.
Team up! A great way to protect yourself is through strength in numbers. If you have friends with a similar interest, then you can all create a website or social account together and this way give your audience multiple people to respond to. This can be a great strategy because it helps to start that sense of community early on.
All these tips work well, but wherever possible… use your own name!