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Friday
Jan302009

Do you change your avatar?

A little social media minutiae for you today.

Lee Odden got me thinking about avatars. You know - those little images that represent you all over your social media profiles?

Do you have a single image that represents you everywhere? Do you have different ones? Do you change them frequently?

Let me pose a question to you: if you ran marketing for Coca-Cola, would you change your logo every other week? No, of course you wouldn't. You want people to recognize you wherever they happen to encounter you. Coke's brand imagery is iconic, recognizable anywhere you are in the world, regardless of whether or not the local language is your native tongue.

With that in mind, why would you regularly change your avatar? Your avatar is the equivalent of your logo, your visual identity online. It's a way for people to instantly recognize you.

I've had my headshot illustration for a couple of years now and use it everywhere.

 

When I meet people for the first time in meatspace, they sometimes mention it because it's not a common method of portraying oneself. I include it wherever I can, even with my bio in conference programs. It's not your typical headshot and can be a great icebreaker.

So, do you change your avatar? Take the poll or leave a comment.


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Reader Comments (5)

I did select "never" but I do want to note in addition that often times for a new site or profile I will put up some sort of placeholder, and change it to the permanent one once I find the time or start using the site/profile on a regular basis.

January 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMark

DOH! Apologies to Evo Terra ( http://funanymore.com/ ) for mistakenly deleting his thoughtful comment.

January 30, 2009 | Registered Commenterjf

And now I have to come up with it again? Dammit. Good thing I'm brilliant.

No, I don't change my avatar. But I do see the "appeal". It shows your fun, quirky, spontaneous and creative. Yeah yeah... fine. But as you point out, John, it's too important of a branding tool -- for those of us to care -- to play that game.

Personally, I think I'm varying degrees of all of those things. I'm just not so sure an ever-changing avatar and/or screen name is the best way to show that. I think my CONTENT speaks to that. Plus, folks new to me won't know that I've changed it a dozen times since last week. So I'm really only convincing those who already know me that I'm all of those things. And don't they know that anyhow?

No, my avatar will stay the same. Unless of course I decide to change all of them to something better.

E.

January 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterEvo Terra

I wonder where i can get a sketched/pencil drawing avatar or headshot illustration avatar, like the one you have gadgetboy. Let me know. Thanks and nice post!

January 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTim Haas

You can get your own illustration here:

http://www.joyoftech.com/geekculturestore/webstore/nitroportraits.html

January 30, 2009 | Registered Commenterjf
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