Here at Social Check, we believe that each individual should be able to control and monitor their online presence, in order to protect and effectively manage their personal brand. After all, the new “first impression” today is evaluated from one’s online presence, and with a constantly evolving social media landscape, it is easy to lose your way amongst the vastly differing platforms. Hence, we decided to gather a list of our top 8 tips to assist you in effectively managing your online reputation and career.
1. Search Yourself: You will be surprised at what you may find. Perhaps an album on your Facebook is accidentally set to ‘public’, or a blog that you created years ago, which no longer reflects your persona, is still visible for all to see.
2. Set up Google Alert on your name: If anyone refers to you, in any content published online, you will be informed. Google Alert can be customised to your specific requirements – from how many instances you want to be notified per day, to what results you require - all or only the best.
3. Purchase your domain name: A relatively inexpensive way to create the ‘central hub’ of your online persona and build your personal brand. Ideally, it's great to keep your domain name closely linked to how people will search for you. The domain name would most likely be yourname.com, however, if that is already taken try yourname.org or yourname.net. This is a great space to place a biography of yourself, your resume, and links to all of your social media profiles, as this shows you have a strong online presence.
4. Organise/ Create Social Media profiles: Sites like Facebook, Google +, Twitter, and Linkedin are great identity platforms for building your personal brand and reputation. They will help improve your ranking on Google. Ensure that you customise your privacy settings, and personalise your url e.g. http://www.linkedin.com/in/johnsmith. Enter current profile information, an up-to- date resume, and utilise a professional profile photo to enhance credibility and professionalism.
5. Create a Blog: These days it is essential to have a voice, and luckily there are many free blogging platforms available to make this possible. Use your blog to show your strengths, and level of expertise in your field. This will give you greater exposure, a high level of credibility, and a growing online presence and reputation. Ensure that this is kept up to date, whether you blog once a day, once a week or once a month – consistency is key. This shows that you are interested and passionate about what you do.
6. Participate: Participate on guest blogs, forums and communities, on topics that you are passionate about. There are many groups to be part of on Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter, where you can interact with others, share your thoughts on topical discussions, and answer questions. Participation may result in you being regarded as an ‘expert’ in your field, which will lead to a strong reputation.
7. Network: Use your exposure on social media, blogs, forums and online communities, to network and build relationships with people who share the same interests, or work in the same field as you. It is easy to create a profile, but it takes time and patience to participate and network.
Networking can impact your reputation in a positive way; it may lead to job opportunities, provide you with contacts to assist you in bringing your business to fruition, or result in your credibility -through your association with other eminent individuals.
8. Consistency is KEY: It is essential to ensure that there is consistency in information shared between all your online profiles; this reflects a high degree of professionalism and an eye-for-detail.
Your reputation is the most important asset you have. It is worthy of your time and focus. We trust the above 8 Steps will provide you with some guidance as to how to approach things. Of course, we welcome any comments / you have about this post.
The Social Check Team