This post was most recently updated on August 7, 2023
What is online reputation management?
Online reputation management is the practice of creating an established brand for yourself or your business that best portrays you as a valuable, trustworthy, and credible source for those who search for you on the internet.
Your current online reputation can be found with a quick investigation using a search engine like Google. Depending on what type of search results accumulate when you type your name or your business’s name and hit enter, your results may vary and impact your overallonline reputation score.
Your score can sway to either the positive or negative side, perhaps even nonexistent, and land smack dab in the middle.
Either way, your digital footprint is what’s left behind when anything is posted or shared in connection to your name, which in this case, is also your search term.
Depending on the relevancy, authenticity, credibility of links, images, and/or videos that end up in your results, your trustworthiness will also be affected when outsiders see those same results knowing nothing about you but still trying to form a first impression. Your search results build trust for those looking to get to know you better for themselves.
A bad review, explicit image, or link to a slanderous article with your name in the title may make or break you long-term. Or perhaps you have nothing at all online regarding your brand. That may raise just as many questions as those associated with negative search results.
Why would someone need online reputation management?
College applications need to recognize that over 70% of college admission officers will dive who you are based on internet search results. How do they do it? Through Google. Your online profiles are some of the first bits of information they sort through and why online reputation management for students is so important.
Have your friends ever posted a picture of you without your permission that’s still floating around on Facebook? Or maybe you commented on someone’s status with some very colorful language that could in fact sway someone’s opinion on your character and judgment.
Job applicants background
Job applicants need also to take time and consideration for what type of image is portrayed of them on the internet. Most applications are done online these days, and Google is one click away from the tail-end of your resume.
Managing your online presence and building personal branding that displays your best characteristics can greatly impact a hiring manager’s ability to trust you as a valuable, responsible candidate for a job opportunity.
Small businesses reputation
Small businesses are the underdog when building a brand that outweighs the competition. Online reviews, star ratings, exceptional customer service, and proven customer loyalty are all key factors in determining if your business will succeed in the harsh startup world.
Defining a positive online image for your business will give potential customers the information they need to trust and value your brand and business. Positive reviews are just as important as how you respond to negative reviews – the attention lies within the details.
Just like a hiring manager will Google your name after they view your application, the girl you met and asked out on a date is going to Facebook stalk you… let’s be real here. Maybe you’re even just trying to do something simple like making new friends, but a defamatory article that previously tarnished your name is coming in between you and moving forward in life.
How does online reputation management work?
Depending on the severity of the situation and the goals you’re trying to meet, it impacts the approach needed.
Unfortunately, some information cannot be removed completely. That’s where search engine suppression of negative content comes into play. By engaging in a digital marketing plan built upon actively engaging content, fresh content is created to bury a negative search result away from your first page and beyond, far past where anyone trying to Google your name will find it.
If you’re looking to improve your brand that is lacking substance, we’ll get you started on a trajectory headed for long-term success.
Those who invest in reputation management are those who are serious about creating an online image for themselves to reference in numerous opportunities that can carry them to success throughout life. Working with someone to improve your results ensures your long-term success, far past your current situation. Interested in taking control it might be the right time to hire a reputation management company.
William DiAntonio is the Founder & CEO of Reputation911, a reputation management firm he founded in 2010 that has earned the trust of its clients for over a decade by helping individuals, businesses and brands control their online search results.