The Internet has become a powerful tool. You can find anything you want online—anything! This is great when you want information, or perfect for advertising, but unfortunately, the bad news and reviews can seep through with the good. It’s vit
al to keep an eye on your online reputation. If everything always shows up positive, you’re all set, but when you see something that needs a little repairing, go ahead and do it. You know how much a reputation can mean!
How easy is it to monitor, and repair if necessary, your online reputation? It’s actually not so hard; it just takes some time and dedication, but the importance of reputation management is big – it can truly make a difference in how people such as customers perceive you.
Don’t be afraid to Google yourself or take a look under another search engine. Take some time every so often and see what’s being said out there about you. It may be a great way to boost your ego when you see some positive reviews of your business, but it may also provide you an opportunity to fix things if you find something not so glowing.
Remedy the Negative
If you do come across that negative comment or review, take the time to respond. If it’s on a page where you can comment, do it there. If there is nowhere to respond, take the initiative and write your own comment or blog post. Whether it’s an apology, an explanation, or a simple defense, these words will speak loudly in your favor.
Write Your Own Positive Press
It doesn’t hurt to toot your own horn – as long as you don’t try to pass yourself off as someone
else. If you use the right keywords and SEO language, you can get your own press ranked higher in Google rankings, and you can bump the bad press down the rankings, where people are less likely to come across it.
Use Social Media, but Use it Wisely
There’s nothing wrong with giving yourself a shout-out now and then; utilize Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to your advantage. Remember, though, there really is no privacy online, so keep your posts all upbeat and positive. If you put your own negative information out there, you’re asking for trouble.
Work Your Sites
If you have a website or a blog, use it to your advantage. Load it with keywords and speak well of yourself. Keep the public up to speed on the good you are doing, and like your own positive press; it will push the negative talk lower on the rankings.
Hire a Company
Maybe there’s just too much negative information on you for whatever reason – an angry ex, bad past choices on your part, a failed business, or something else you’d like to erase. The trouble with the Internet is you can’t really erase it, but an online management company such as Reputation.com can be very good at hiding it and making sure clients or others will see positive, current, accurate information about you and/or your business. Know when it’s time to call in the troops and let a company manage your reputation for you.
Heather Legg is a blogger who writes on reputation management, Internet safety, and small businesses.