Wow. That was an interesting hour or so.
This Thing really got me thinking. I have been a 'victim' of terrible personal branding in the past when I set up an online business. I didn't expect it to take off but it did and I ended up with a website with a really strong online presence and search engine placing - but with a name that I truly hated, that was the first thing that came into my head and really didn't fit the product. I relaunched under a new name but wish I had saved myself all of the time and hassle by just doing it properly in the first place.
In terms of creating a balance between a professional and a personal identity I use facebook for my personal page (and also have a page for my business on there) and I have a twitter account which I am just getting used to. Mainly for professional uses but I have a few personal tweets in there as I think it doesn't hurt to have an occasional personal tweet as long as they are inoffensive and do not damage your image.
I had a look at the suggested reading and found it useful, particularly the Danah Boyd piece. Whilst I agree with what she has to say for the most part, I'm not quite happy with blogging under my 'real' name where I can be googled by work colleagues etc.
I recognise the importance of being consistent across online platforms but for now, whilst I'm very new to blogging, I'm working under an assumed identity! I may change the name at a later date (I see there is the option) I'm also not sure I want a photo of me on here just yet. Give me time...
Googling myself was reassuring. There is a link to my twitter, facebook and linkedin pages. My goodreads profile and my justgiving webpage. Also one press release which mentions me as a contact for the Family History group. Nothing I would worry about. Images brings up a picture I used to have on my twitter profile - and also a picture of my Chartership mentor - just because I retweeted a post of hers... Odd.
Now to find out what Thing 4 holds for me!