Managing your online reputation requires two steps.
The first one is that we create a presence for you online. During this step, we publish a number of materials that we think will benefit you and your reputation. We may publish content to social media or third party sites. We may create or simply update personal websites for you. We may also publish various forms of media that we think will help, such as videos or photos. We can also publish press releases and make this content very visible for the general public. Most people don’t go past the first page of search results when they look for something online. Only a fraction of them go past that first page, and around 1% go past the second page.
Our goal is to try to push negative or misleading results down to at least the second page. This is the second step. Much of the work we do is not publishing but working to change the rankings of certain material online. We try to push irrelevant and outdated content down and out of sight.
The Tenants of Reputation Management
There are some basic rules for reputation management. You will want to bear these in mind as we perform our services for you or you try to make a decision as to whether you need our services.
Validity and lifespan of content matters. The sites that rank well tend to be considered more valid and tend to get more views. Sites that are of high quality rank well too. Sites that have been around for a while tend to carry some weight that helps their rankings. This is why it is so important to start reputation management as early as possible. Prevention is better than damage control. If you are having problems with your online reputation, then it is probably because you allowed other people to control the conversation about you. By getting some strong content out there and building up a defensive wall, you can ward off a lot of that negative press. If you pre-empt poor reviews and misleading results, you can make it very hard for them to gain a foothold. Don’t visit sites with negative content. You want to try as hard as possible to stay away from defamatory sites. If you are sending traffic to these sites, you can increase their perceived validity.
We can delete nothing. Unless we were to engage in some illegal hacking, we could not remove any content from other people’s sites. It’s important to keep this in mind and understand that our job isn’t about getting rid of content but about overcoming bad content with a positive reputation. Asking people to take down content is often a waste of time. It’s incredibly rare for any site to respond to a takedown request in the way you would like. The website isn’t usually required by law to obey these requests. If they do take it down, it can often be republished elsewhere. Quality and variety matters. A solid plan for managing your reputation will involve creating content that is varied and of incredibly high quality. It also needs to be published across multiple sites. If there is more than one person telling the same story, then the search engines and people are going to believe that story. Don’t try to take shortcuts. There are many faulty ways people attempt to manage their reputations. One of these is to post similar or completely identical information on multiple poor quality sites. This not only looks duplicitous, but search engines will see it and penalize you for it. All your effort will be wasted.
The First Step in Managing Your Reputation
You can get your reputation on the right track in a few ways. You want to be sure the basic reputation management practices are being covered. One of the key ways is to get your profile established on various social media sites- Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. You also want to claim any pages that have your business or personal information on them that were created without your knowledge. These will often appear on sites like Google+ and PeekYou. We can help you locate and update these with accurate information. You also want to promote yourself through message boards and Q & A sites where you can provide expert information and answer questions regarding you and your business.
Keep updating as well. Just because one of your blog entries doesn’t track well doesn’t mean the next one won’t. This stuff takes a lot of effort, if you are going to build a strong reputation. Keep looking for changes and negative content. Check on how your efforts are making a difference and where the positive content is ranking. You can also leave a digital trail with online activities, such as online gaming sites and other places that require an account. You can share your hobbies on sites like Flickr and DeviantArt as well. Be sure to use your own name when you create an account somewhere. That helps to establish you and get your name out there in a positive way.