online reputation management

Online Reputation Management - 5 Checks for Your Digital Profile


Fact: Prior to a meeting or interview, more than 40% of the people with whom you meet will have either:

•  Searched for you using Google or another search engine
•  Reviewed your LinkedIn profile
•  Looked you up on Facebook

~ CBS News

Digital profile management is simply controlling what's said about you online - and there's nothing at all simple about it. Your online reputation is being scrutinized by

  • customers and clients
  • potential employers
  • your employees
  • colleagues
  • competitors
  • friends and family

5 Checks to Manage Your Digital Profile

1. Google Yourself

You need to know what comes up when someone enters your name or your business' name in Google, Bing, YouTube or other popular search engines. Does your profile come up - or does a convicted felon with the same name show up on page 1? Do you have a long-ago arrest record that appears on page 1 under your name search? If you don't know what is appearing in your digital profile, you won't know how to manage and control it.

2. Review Your Social Networks

What photos and activities are on your social sites? What pictures and updates are you sharing? What photos and posts are you tagged in? If its questionable, take it down. If a friend posted it, ask them to take it down.

3. Use Google Authorship

Yes, Google Authorship changed recently: but you should still complete your Google Authorship profile and link it to your G+ account, blog profile, guest blog profile, and other sites you publish on.

4. Improve Your Social Media Profiles and Privacy Settings

Now that you know what's found on your search results and your social media profiles, update your social media profiles:

  • optimize your LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook profiles so the important facts about you are prominently displayed with relevant links to your online networks
  • regularly share quality information with your audience on Twitter, Facebook and your other networks
  • check your social media network privacy settings so you are sharing what you want your audience to know, and keeping private strictly personal activity. And never post on social media something that can damage your reputation if it is shared: nothing is private on social media.

5. Start a Blog

A business blog is your strongest asset to control what information is available online about your brand - you and your business. Writing and distributing information relevant to your brand and your audience on a regular basis through a blog provides SEO benefits that can improve your ranking and the types of results returned on search engines.

If you've seen some things you don't like about yourself online, there are further steps you can take to improve your online reputation. There are many companies that provide online reputation management services. One free online reputation management tool is BrandYourself, which provides you with information to control what shows up on Google:

Our goal is to make it as easy as possible to help anyone improve their own search results and online reputation.

~ BrandYourself

For More Information on Digital Reputation Management
Forbes: Your Guide to Online Reputation Management
Search Engine Land: 10 Pro Online Reputation Management Tips for Local Businesses