Creating an Online Presence

Creating and building an online presence, whether for business or personal pleasure is not an easy task.  The number of failures far exceeds the number of successes as exemplified by some of the material available online.  Presenting oneself to the planet is a delicate task, requiring forethought and planning to avoid embarrassment or worse.  In this age of "me" or individualized presentations exemplified by the rapid rise of social media sites, without sufficient care an off chance remark easily leads to to dissatisfaction and at worst a backlash.  Presenting something positive and avoiding a backlash is especially important if the online presence is in support of a business.

The guiding principle utilized in material posted to the blogs or websites is nothing is published that my mother would not find enjoyable to read or see, followed closely by - if in doubt don't publish it.  These 2 simple canons prevent 95% of potential errors, followed by the realization that "language is our common currency and some days my wallet is empty" or we all make mistakes and sometimes it is better to admit the mistake and push ahead.

Equally important for the creation of a effective online presentation is the question - is it about people and personalities or is it about ideas and concepts.  With the rise of social media the people and personalities approach is encouraged.  A good example of this is the foxification of news reporting where Fox has been highly successful in the people and personality approach to news.  But frequently the people and personalities over shadow the ideas and concepts (the news as facts and information) and this can easily lead to problems and a back lash.  To circumvent this potential problem a nom de plume or pen name is used on the blogs so readers may concentrate on the material presented and not the individual presenting it.  Pen names have a rich history and it a convenient way to focus attention away from the individual.  It also provides a mechanism to participate in the individualized presentations of social media.  The nom de plume BAlvarius serves such a function allowing the focus to remain on the ideas and concepts while at the same time providing a personality for those interested.  While many adopt a nom de plume for less than savory reasons, mainly to attack others from a perceived position  of anonymity, the pen name is best used to convey ideas and concepts, letting the reader make up their own mind about the quality and content.

One of the fundamental principles in building a successful online presence is once the material is out there how do people find it?  How to connect with a potential readership?  A number of mechanisms are promoted by various sources, just Google "building blog readership".  Many claim to have a number of secrets to increase readership, some of which are useful and some not.  Many of the techniques are geared toward driving traffic to a monetized site as a way to generate profit.  To avoid these approaches no ads are used on the blogs creating an environment free from distractions which can reduce the quality of a visit.  Instead, everything presented is created here expressly for the enjoyment of readers, no recycling or aggregation which would rely on the work of others.  Photography is main tool used to create material for consumption and living in a landscape that is easy on the eyes helps.  Electronic devices from phones to desk top computers have embedded cameras supporting the notion that our species is very visual and responds well to images.  But where to place all this created material and how to direct potential viewers back to the source?  With photographs there are many online resources for the storage of photographs, see below, and many of these sites allow one to create back links providing a pathway back to the source.  In addition to visuals participating and commenting on other sites is also a good mechanism for providing links back to original work.  In Blogger, links lead back to a Google page and in others a website link may be added to the avatar when commenting allowing interested parties to find out more.  This was used successfully by some businesses which commented on posts that were high in the Google rankings as a way to provide links to their particular business which related directly to the topic under discussion.  While some may consider this a form of spam, presenting the opportunity for a visitor to visit another business seems reasonable.

Perhaps the biggest lesson learned from all this effort was the 1% observation.  That is only 1% will ever find the site, and only 1% of those will take the time to view the material, and of those only 1% will like it.

A visual representation of back links created to Blogging from the Boot Heel and ultimately to the Painted Pony Resort

BAlvarius out geocaching.


  1. I'd recognize you anywhere! ha ha!

    I had not thought of an ad free site but do appreciate it! I AVOID the sites with the ads now that I think about it, or click to close it if that option is available.

  2. I guess my face behind a bush is not a good way to disguise myself but it illustrates the point. It is the material (the blog post in this case) that is important and not me.

    I find many ads distracting (which is the point I guess) but do not appreciate it. The only tool at my disposal is to move on, which is what I do. The small amount of money ads generate does not offset, in my mind, the distraction and aggravation they cause.

  3. Hurray for you! I guess I'm the 1 % of the 1 % who comments then. Or is it 1 % of 1 % of 1 %?

  4. I do appreciate your comments and observations, they add another perspective to the topic I've presented.