“Personal Branding” is extremely important in today’s digital economy. Knowing how to effectively manage it is equally important, if not more so.
What most people forget is that the moment you’re born you begin a journey of digital-equity building whether you like it or not. (You can thank your parents for that in some cases…!)
The question is whether you will take control of it… because if you don’t someone else will (or the masses).
I decided that I’d rather manage it instead of the social media landscape that could do whatever they wanted with it, for better or for worse really.
So, I bought JohnSaddington.com (site has changed, link to DEMO below) and just sat on it for awhile, but I wasn’t sure what I should do with it.
It looked like this for a while:
Obviously it couldn’t stay like that. At first I thought I should purchase some ready-made website (like GetNectar.com who was an obvious inspiration but will set you back 200 bucks or so… but they do have some amazing other versions and flavors!) or off-the-shelf app or theme. … Bleh. I knew I could do better for free.
So, I set out to develop a WordPress theme that would help do that in a creative and attractive way. I wanted something simple, elegant, and super easy to change as my brand changed. I wanted it super light weight, memorable, and had elements that mattered.
I also wanted to make it readily available at no cost to my friends, family, and many others, especially in today’s economy.
I’ve had a lot of friends laid off recently and as they search for jobs and as businesses/recruiters/HR managers review their credentials and use Google to help find the “real” you (hopefully they don’t find the MySpace picture of you half-naked and piss-drunk) wouldn’t it be nice, I thought, if they found YourName.com instead with an attractive and impactful first impression?
Right. You get the picture.
So the Ipseity Personal Branding WordPress Theme was born.
Ipseity Personal Branding WordPress Theme
“Ipseity” means selfhood, or individual identity. I couldn’t think of a better name for the theme (and I wanted something original).
It’s powered by WordPress, it’s super light weight, around 150kb total file size (without background images), only 3 .php files, 1 .css file, and 2 essential .gifs (the arrow keys), and a js folder for the side-scrolling action.
It’s also easily styled with H1/H2/H3 tags and you can add images… heck, you could even make it a photo portfolio with style!
I’ve included a few backgrounds for inspiration as you can see as well as a few screenshots of how to control the styling. It’s pretty simple and straightforward.
Here are some examples:
How To Manage Ipseity
I made it super easy to manage, update, and change.
Each section is just a single blog entry/post.
Yeah, it’s that easy.
I’ve even included “dummy data” for you to import into your WordPress install so you can get started even faster.
If you want to add images like the last example, just make sure that they are 940 pixels wide by 600 pixels tall to fit perfectly into the theme.
The theme is pretty strict in terms of width, so I wouldn’t deviate from these dimensions, unless you do something like a much smaller image for a bio image.
Again, you could have an all-image gallery for your personal brand or portfolio.
Mix it up with alternating images and text.
The sky is the limit here.
To manage the actual text, I’m just using H1/H2/H3 tags for the main title and copy below.
The regular “paragraph” text is available to use as well, of course.
And finally, to change the background, just change the following name of the file in the “images” folder:
Ok. I’m Ready. I Want To Download It!
Here you go. Have fun and tell others!
Please feel free to comment and leave examples of your personal brand site using Ipseity! It’ll help other people visualize what others have done with the theme and the possibilities. Think of it as a community activity.
Again, feel free to leave your thoughts, comments, and “improvements”…! And let me know if you use it! I want to see some kickbutt examples!
Oh, and one final thing: If you need a cheap (but good and legit) host to get a new .com website, check out this deal I’m sporting here with Dreamhost.com!