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Branding Yourself With Gravatars

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Branding Yourself With Gravatars Illustration

Its well known that one method for gaining more readers for your blog is to comment on blogs in your niche. Its a way to establish your credibility. You can further enhance your branding and recognizability when commenting on others blogs by using Gravatars.

What are Gravatars?

To quote directly from “A gravatar, or globally recognized avatar, is quite simply an 80×80 pixel avatar image that follows you from weblog to weblog appearing beside your name when you comment on gravatar enabled sites. Avatars help identify your posts on web forums, so why not on weblogs?”

Some influencial blogs have Gravatars enabled. Take a look at the comment section in a popular blog like Freelance Switch. Here is a link to an article on Evil Knievel that has some Gravatars in use in the comments.

It is really simple to set up a Gravatar. You create an account at The site walks you through a really simple process of uploading an image that you can use as your Gravatar. You associate your Gravatar with an email address. So when you go to enter a comment on sites like Freelance Switch the form asks you for your email address. The Gravatar you have associated with that email will then show up when you enter the comment.

Benefits to Using a Gravatar

You could use your logo or anything really as your Gravatar. By setting up your Gravatars you will have a consistent brand image next to your comments. This helps to give you quick and professional recognition on these websites. Its a technique that allows your comments to stand out. It will get your brand scene by many new potential readers. Combine that with your excellent tips in the meat of your comment and you've got a winning combination. This will help to pull more readers back to your website.

Using a Self Portrait as Your Gravatar and On Your Blog

Why do author's always have a photo of themselves on their book jackets? As an author their photo is their brand identity. As a blogger you are a writer and you can utilzie this same kind of personal brandability.

As a blog author you are a big part of your brand. Especially, if you are a single blogger on your site and not running a multi-blogger site like Freelance Switch. You can use an image of yourself on your blog and for your Gravatar. Its also possible to further brand this self portrait with design elements from your website or your blog's logo. You could wear a t-shirt with your logo on it for example.

Whether its at the small Gravatar size or if its a larger size. Your individual blog will benefit by placing a portrait or photo of yourself on your blog. Some obvious places to put an image of yourself would be on your website's about page or in your sidebar. If you opt to put the photo in your sidebar then your personal branding will be persistent throughout your site. You could also get creative with your placement and find some space for it in your header or in a unique area in your blog's theme.

Look at This is a blogger that is an excellent writer. Skellie's brand identity would benefit from some personal branding. Especially, with such sparse branding currently. Now look at What jumps out at you on the home page. Yup, its a video of the author Darren Rowse. The videos are persistently shots of Darren and serves as a great brandable image on the website. He's also got a nice portrait shot of himself on his about page

Furthering the Use of Your Self Portrait

As a guest writer on other blogs you may be given the opportunity to place your photo next to your profile. You can use the same image in social media networks like facebook or technorati. You could use your portrait as an Avatar on forumns, which is another great place to gain new readers for your blog. Ultimately, you can use the same image to brand yourself all over the web. As we move into the future a persistent personal identity will help you to be recognizable.

What if You Have More Than One Website to Promote?

This is the position I'm in. I resolved this by creating an illustration of a photo of myself. Then I added branding elements from the different websites and blogs I want to promote. When I use the image on social networking sites I use the plain unbranded version. When I leave comments on blogs I choose which site I want to promote next to my comment. So, I have a flexible system that can expand for different brands, but they are all held together by the common element of my self portrait.

Its also really easy to set up multiple images at You just create a different email and then associate that Gravatar with that email address. See the image below When you comment on blogs you can choose which email address to leave. Depending on which email you choose to use for the comment you'll get the associated Gravatar.

Gravatars Setup

For full design instruction on the self portrait visit the AiBURN article. Let me know if you have any questions and your thoughts on Gravatars and Branding yourself.

Thanks for these branding

Thanks for these branding tips, I'm going to make one for myself!

Although there I can see a

Although there I can see a lot of them here but I can't see a lot on my own blog. I have enabled them but I always can see very crappy gravatars which are difficult to tolerate. Is there something that we can filter them?

The branding idea is good

The branding idea is good and should be extended to the Open ID framework.

Gravatars and avatars etc. SO important

I am online more and more than I was 5 years ago. I am also on more social networks more now than one year ago! I now realize the imprint these gravatars will leave on one's memory and they do serve a unique purpose! Thanks for reinforcing this here. It really doesn't state though, if the 80X80 size is "standard" it? I realize many sites offer that "cropping" tool. But I look back and think how boring these networks, blogs etc. would look without them! In fact, maybe I can polish up on the one I currently use so thank for the great article.

Cartooning Service Offering Images For Licensing



wow, nicely done. I'm

wow, nicely done. I'm jealous... need one myself!

great share, i like

great share, i like gravatars now

I am way behind in getting

I am way behind in getting my Gravatar together (can't you tell?). Seriously, though, I need to get one done asap!

I Have Been Looking for a Gravatar

Thanks so much for the info on the gravatars. I have been wanting to get one but had no idea how to go about doing it. This is such a big help and best of all it is free.

I love FREE!

Great piece of advise here.

Great piece of advise here. I have been using Gravatars since my first blog. Thanks.

I never really thought too

I never really thought too much about avatars. Just figured they were there for people to mess with if they want. I guess it's good to identify yourself though.

I thought gravatars were a

I thought gravatars were a waste of time , but I guess I 'm gonna get one (or 2) now .
There is definitly some validity to it .


Here we go! On that webside you can ask for a cartoon of you. You only need a photo of you - that's it.


This is a cool idea! I'm now thinking of which Gravatar would suit me best!

Gravatars are great for brand identities

Highly creative and fun! Gravatars do add interest to posts and comments, and allow bloggers to be indetified through the use of symbols. Nice!


this will be a great alternative to the default drupal avatars.

I think all of us need and

I think all of us need and want something more social and web 2.0. I am quite impressed with new web and all the basics. As from Gravators similarly I am impressed with diquss comment system. It keep all your comments synchronize which have been made on all the blogs having disquss as their commenting system.

wow just realized that

wow just realized that creating gravatars can be such easy mate...I used to "steal" from some sources but hey I'm going to create mine one now :)

I made myspace pics

I made with photoshop glitter myspace pics.
have a look at them:
Thanks 4 your website ;) xxoxo

This is wonderful.

Although this is a wonderful thing but I am confused with its method to implement on my own blogs. I am pretty new person with blogging so I am always get confused too early. I can see those creepy avatars with all comments which shouldn't be there. Will you suggest some plugin or a link to know all the implementation process.

Thanks for your work :]

Thanks for your work :]

Thanks for guiding me to the

Thanks for guiding me to the Gravatar world!

Great idea! I actually have

Great idea! I actually have never thought of this at all! I've had the same problem as you, how would I even be able to accomplish multiple Gravatars for my sites? Brilliant solution!

Neat concept. Thanks for

Neat concept. Thanks for sharing. Seems to me this is going to be big.


good luck


good luck

What a great technology!

What a great technology! Having a Gravatar would really make it easier to stand out and be recognized.

Very interesting article.

Very interesting article. Thanks

Multiple Gravatars Excellent Idea

Hi Sean,

I have used a Gravatar in the past but I had multiple sites and didn't want to 'align' myself with all 3. Great idea to have multiple gravatars! I didn't know you could do that (mind you it's been a while since I set mine up).

I will definitely be checking this option out and setting up several.

Great post :)

Well Thought Out Idea

I have had artist work for me before, but never creating something about me specifically. It is something to be considered and should be done in the future.

helpful idea

Thanks for you..... Nice information about gravatar you have given to all people.


Is this work for comment?

I find my gravatar suits me

I find my gravatar suits me well. ;-)
It's good to see the person behind the message.

Thank You!

Thanks for the article!

I bookmark this article for future reference. Keep posting good stuff.


A Gravatar is very interesting idea, I had never heard of such a thing. I use my picture in all forms and blogs I belong to, I feel it is important to have a face for people to talk to.

Great Idea!

It reminds me of those Yahoo things... whatever they're called. *brainfart* You can make your own character and change the background, clothes, accessories. I love how you change yours up but keep your picture the same.

Anyway, I don't think this would work well for my wedding and portrait photography website but I do have a picture of me on the about page.

I am building a farm blog that I want to do that for (have author avatars for every post). I'll probably use actual photos, tho.

This is an excellent tip,

This is an excellent tip, gravatars great for branding. Also, more and more blogs are being developed with gravatar capability in the comments section.

Great!, I'll make one for my

Great!, I'll make one for my blogs too.


I need to get cracking on developing some gravatars on my digital cameras blog. I really want to make this blog look good but it takes a lot of work.

Gravatars are a great way to build your brand

I think gravatars are a great way to help establish your brand or business. People can relate the good advice in your field to your business.

great idea

gravatar is a great idea. keep up the good work!


This is awesome instead of always uploading a different pic. What a great way of branding a logo too.

Simply astounding. Liked

Simply astounding. Liked this article. Thank you for posting it

This seems easy to use. Will

This seems easy to use. Will try this out soon.

Thanks for the gravatar

Thanks for the gravatar info. It makes me want to get one for myself.

This is cool because i

This is cool because i always wanted my own gravatars but don't possess the artistic skill to make one.

Thanks for outstanding

Thanks for outstanding review.
Really good post, I think.
I am looking 4ward new informative remarks.
Good luck.

I hope my gravatar shows

I also like having a personal graphical icon next to my comment, and this is made possible by gravatars.

Gravatars are Groovy!

Love the Gravatar site and what it offers. I wish more of my blog commenters would use them.

Have toyed with the idea of a "graphic" or "cartoon" style gravatar. May choose to move in that direction some day. Like what you've done with yours!

Guess I'm wondering whether it's OK for a professional/business oriented blog. Hmm...

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