Getting the most from your about.me page

This post is Day #8 in a series called Personal Branding for Software Developers.

In my article yesterday on Google+ I mentioned that I liked the site because it allowed me to list all my social media summaries in one spot. While Google+ is new to the world of social networking there is a site that has been around since 2009 that offers the same service.

About.me is a spot where you can create a one page profile to link all your websites and social networking identities. The service has trusted relationships with Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn among others so that when people click on your links they will see your latest updates within your about.me page. They can then navigate to your profile on the specific site if they want to see the rest of your updates.

To sign up for your account visit the site. You can pick your own URL and I highly recommend you use the name you used on all your other accounts as you want to keep your personal brand consistent across all platforms. You also want to use your name as it will be easy to remember by people when you tell them you have an about.me profile. They could easily append your name to the end of the site URL to find you.

Once your site is created you can then add content. The nice thing is that about.me is as much visual as it is content based. The background of your page can be any large image. People generally list images of themselves as their background. However you can use some graphic or general scenic shot if you desire. My site uses a shot of me atop Diamond Head in Oahu, Hawaii.

Next you want to add your biography. You want to give a general sense of who you are so that when people come to this site they have a brief introduction to you. As well, both the picture and the biography also offer the visitor the reassurance they are on the right page. If you have passed this page URL to someone who you met briefly or have only talked to through email this is especially helpful. It is not a problem with someone with my last name but when you get a name like “John Smith” about.me returns six pages of results.

The last major section to fill out is Services. This is where you can add links to your various online identities. When you click “Add A Service” you can select from a large number sites. This will create a reciprocal link between the two sites and add a logo to your page. When users click the logo they can preview your identity on that site.

When you click “Add A Service” you can also choose “Add A URL”. This will allow you to add a link to a website that is not listed as a service. This is an excellent way to link to personal websites and other developer sites
like GitHub, Stack Overflow and CodePlex that can flesh out your profile.

As you can see about.me is a quick and easy way to create a one-page personalized website. You can share this link and a visitor has a page where they can see your picture, get a quick bio and then select a link to any of your social media sites. It essentially acts as a clearing house for all your identities on the web.

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About Ken Cenerelli
I am a Programmer Writer, .NET Developer, Microsoft MVP - Visual Studio and Development Technologies, Public Speaker, Blogger, and Microsoft Azure Nerd. I blog regularly at kencenerelli.wordpress.com and can be found on Twitter via @KenCenerelli.

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