Online Reputation Management for Individuals: 4 Tips for Improving Your Online Reputation
Strategy for cleaning up what is said about you online for an individual differs greatly than work needed for a large corporation. Just like the needs of a small local business afflicted with negative Google reviews will have a different task to fix online than an oil company that needs to revamp their image. Below is an in depth guide on ORM for individuals and tips on how you can build up your reputation and insulate against negative attacks, doxxing, and malicious actors on the internet.
Seeing that bad news article about you stings. What can sting more is the loss of personal relationships and job opportunities. That’s something that many people don’t realize they need until it’s far too late. Once your reputation is tarnished online, it can be hard to reverse the damage — and even if you can, it can be an extremely costly and frustrating process.
Luckily, it’s much easier to prevent your online reputation from being damaged in the first place. To protect your online reputation, you must first be aware of how you look on the internet and understand that it can be affected by every action that you take.
What is Online Reputation Management?
Online reputation management is a method of monitoring and managing your reputation. In the online world, your reputation is determined by what other people say about you. This includes both positive and negative reviews, comments, mentions, and ratings on any platform that people can use to share their opinions.
Online reputation management is not simply about getting negative reviews removed. It’s about monitoring your online presence and acting on any issues that arise. It’s also about protecting yourself against issues that could arise in the future.
Why Is It Important to Have a Good Online Reputation?
A good reputation can be a powerful asset. It can make it easier to find new job opportunities, get a loan, or even get a date. It can also make it easier to promote your business and get new customers. A good reputation can make your life easier in many ways.
Having a bad online reputation, on the other hand, can make things much more complicated – not only in your personal life but in your business life as well. You could get rejected from job opportunities, get denied that important loan you were relying on to update your personal brand website, or even have trouble making personal connections with people in your community.
Is Reputation Management for Individuals Different than For Businesses?
When it comes to reputation management for individuals and for businesses, they are quite a bit different. In today’s world, people want to know whom they are doing business with. They want to know that their hard-earned money is not wasted on a scam or a bad investment.
If you are in business, you need to create a positive online reputation and brand that will bring in new customers while making your clients feel all nice and cozy about how you look online. A negative online reputation will scare off potential customers and even cause old customers to leave and go to a competitor. That’s one way we’ve grown by outmatching the competition.
When it comes to individuals, your reputation is more than what other people say about you. It’s also what you say about yourself. It’s about your behavior and how it affects others and your community.
For individuals, ORM is about coming up with in depth strategies to protecting your personal brand. It’s about making sure that everything you say and do online is in line with your goals, your values, and the image you want to project to the world.
Should You Invest in Reputation Management Tools?
When it comes to reputation management, it’s essential to have the right tools. Many tools are available online. Some are paid tools that require a monthly or yearly subscription fee, while others are free.
Before you invest in a reputation management tool, it’s essential to know your needs and what you are trying to accomplish.
- Are you trying to get negative reviews removed?
- Are you attempting to get more positive reviews?
- Are you trying to make sure the reviews you have are genuine?
- Are you attempting to protect yourself against or remove fake reviews?
- Are you trying to make sure your social media accounts are protected?
- Why are you online to begin with? What are your goals?
The more specific you are with your answers, the better. If choosing a particular tool is an overwhelming process, you may want to consider investing in the help of a reputation management company.
Online Reputation Management for Individuals: 4 Tips to Help You Properly Manage Your Online Presence
In today’s world, having a good reputation online is incredibly important. It can have a significant impact on your personal and professional life. To protect yourself, it’s vital to be aware of your online reputation and how it can be affected by your actions.
The good news? Online reputation management for individuals isn’t nearly as complicated as you may think. The key to success is to manage your online presence from the start. Here are four online reputation management tips to help you keep your reputation in check:
1. Be Aware of Your Online Reputation
First, it’s essential to know what your online reputation is. This means being aware of what people are saying about you online and in person.
- What are people saying about you?
- What are they not saying about you?
- What are they saying about you on social media?
- What are they saying about you in real life?
You have to take the time to do a bit of personal digging. This means going on social media and searching for your name. It also means using search engines like Google to see what your name is associated with (posts, images, videos, re-shares/retweets, etc.).
2. Be Aware of What You Are Posting
Next, you need to be aware of what you are posting online – both on social media and on your own personal blog or website. This means ensuring that what you are posting is in line with your goals, values, and the image you want to project.
You also need to make sure anything you post that isn’t purely opinion-based is factually accurate. This is especially important if you consider posting something that can be seen as controversial, as it could lead to you losing out on some of your audience or opening the door to confrontation. While a healthy debate won’t necessarily harm your online reputation, a heated confrontation could.
3. Be Aware of Everyone You Choose to Connect With
It’s also crucial to be aware of who you are choosing to network with, whether on your “professional” or “personal” profiles. Your connections can have a considerable impact on your online reputation. This is especially important if you are building a personal brand, or if you’re a prominent figure within your niche/industry.
If you do choose to network with someone, make sure you do your research first. If you will be working with someone, make sure you do your due diligence and check them out online. If you are friends with someone, make sure you check their background and their social media profiles to ensure they don’t have a reputation online that could hurt your image.
4. Be Aware of Your Verbal Presentation
The way you speak can also have a massive impact on your online reputation. This is especially true if you are a public figure. If you are an online personality, a blogger, or a social media influencer, you need to be aware of what you say in your videos, podcasts, and social media posts – as well as how you are saying it.
The way you speak and the words you use can significantly impact your audience, especially if they are a specific demographic. If you choose to use profanity, it can make you seem unprofessional. If you choose to use slang, it can make you seem insensitive. If you choose to use words that are not in your native language and you misuse them, it can make you seem uneducated.
Your every word is going to be scrutinized, so make sure you are hyper-aware of everything you say, type, and reshare – because even sharing someone else’s words can have a massive impact on how others view you.
Addressing a Poor Online Reputation: Actions You’ll Need to Take
Unfortunately, even the best online reputation management tools can’t prevent others from posting or saying things that can harm your personal online reputation, or that of your brand. When you find yourself in a situation where your online reputation is affected by someone else’s actions, it’s time to take action.
Contact the Source of the Problem Privately
The first thing you need to do is contact the source of the problem. This means getting in touch with the person or company that is posting or saying something about you that you feel is causing an issue.
You need to contact them in a professional manner. Outline your concerns and let them know that you feel they are harming your online reputation. You should also let them know that you would like to see the situation resolved.
This can be a challenging conversation, and in some situations, it may not be possible to resolve the issue to your satisfaction.
If this is the case, you need to decide how to proceed.
Document Your Efforts to Resolve the Problem
If you cannot resolve the issue, you should document your efforts to solve the conflict. This means keeping a record of your actions and the actions of the other party involved. It means documenting your conversations and any promises the other party makes to you.
This documentation will be incredibly helpful if you need to take legal action in the future.
Publicly Respond to Negativity in a Professional Manner
While many cases can (and should) be handled privately, there are instances where it’s better to address them publicly. For example, if you come across a negative comment or review on a service you personally provided, then you should consider addressing the individual by replying to their comment directly.
This can be a great way to turn the negative review into a positive one. You can do this by showing empathy and understanding of the situation. You can also provide an honest and accurate response to the review, taking responsibility for any errors and letting the consumer know how you intend to correct the situation moving forward.
The most important thing you must do is keep your cool. Do not respond with anger or hostility. Keep your response professional, and remember that the public is constantly judging you.
Encourage Reviews and Feedback
Another option that is often very effective in helping to resolve a poor online reputation is garnering reviews and feedback. This can be done by creating an official review page on your website, or encouraging customers to leave reviews on sites such as Yelp or Google My Business.
This can be a fantastic way to get a more accurate representation of who you are as a business and your business type. It can also be a wonderful way to resolve any issues by showing you are willing to work with your customers to address any complaints they may have.
Consider Hiring a Professional
It may be possible to hire a professional to help you resolve the situation. This could be a public relations professional, an attorney (should you need legal advice), or a professional reputation management service.
Before you hire a team to help you with your online reputation management, make sure that you research them and ensure they have a good track record of helping their clients. You also need to make sure that they are someone you feel comfortable working with. It’s essential to have a good relationship with the person you hire.
Creating a Stronger, More Trustworthy Online Persona
Online reputation management for individuals is just as crucial as it is for large enterprises – especially if you are in the public eye.
You can do dozens of things to improve your online reputation, but it all comes down to being honest and staying true to yourself at the end of the day. If you are willing to do that, there is no doubt your online reputation will improve.
Of course, when it doubt, it doesn’t hurt to do a little recon and see what measures you can implement to enhance your online reputation. Whether you choose to handle it on your own or hire a professional online reputation management company, staying actively aware of your reputation ensures that nothing will slip through the cracks.
Even Major Countries are Using Online Public Relations Firms
Many countries even connect their PR firm with their Ministry of Foreign Affairs to ensure a great experience. Do you know how search engines like Google guess what your query will be after you type a few words? Experts such as Ruddie can also guide tourism to a given destination by manipulating Google’s Autosuggest feature. If a user is interested in skiing but doesn’t know where to go, having Google recommend locations such as Aspen or Breckenridge can make it much more likely that they ultimately plan a trip to Colorado. Businesses focus a lot of resources on their search engine optimization (SEO) efforts, so why shouldn’t countries do the same?
Of course, it’s also important to live up to the positive reputation you are building. If a country fails to protect potential travelers or a company engages in predatory business practices, even an expert will struggle to continuously maintain a positive image for them. The true value of reputation management is ensuring that consumers see each institution for what it really is, no more or less.