Believe it or not, there is something you can do about negative online information.
Content is keyThe key to reputation management is content. Good content – and a lot of it – on Google friendly sites will help drive bad search results from the number 1-10 spots down to the teens or twenty’s, which is sometimes enough to sway a potential influential person from marking you with a big red letter.
Unless negative items are consistently published and updated online, the more positive content you add, the farther the negative results will go. Improving your online reputation takes dedication and time.
Now, you’re probably not going to be able to affect your Facebook or LinkedIn search results, so if you have some compromising material on there, it’s best to remove it entirely from your profile.
Articles published on Google-friendly article directories, press releases, and guest posts on blogs (choose blogs with some history and therefore higher ranking) will help to fill in the first 1-2 pages with positive results. If you can get an article in the local paper, which will most likely have a good online presence that will help the cause.
Content topics should be relevant to what you do, what you know about, or what you’ve done. For example,
- Press Release: You’ve gained a new client!
- Article: “Top 10 Ways to…”
- Article: “What I’ve Learned From…”
- Article: “What Your Current Service Provider Doesn’t Want You to Know…”
- Success Story: How you applied an innovative solution to solve a problem.
Repurpose for positioningIf these five pieces are not enough to drive down your negative results, take a look at what worked best. You can repurpose the best content or create new content for that same venue.
There are reputation management systems out there, however, they are merely reporting systems that provide you with the current state of your online reputation and the reporting sources’ trustworthiness. Reputation management companies must still roll up their sleeves and create a barrage of positive content to drown out the rest.
For tips on writing good, fast content and publishing it on Google-friendly sites, see http://www.personalbrandingblog.com/a-cup-of-coffee-to-personal-article-marketing/.
Wendy Brache is the co-creator of Sales Force Branding and founder of Kismet Group Web Marketing, now a division of Access Marketing Company. Wendy is a senior consultant specializing in B2B Corporate Social Media, and is a featured marketing technology speaker and columnist on renowned websites, such as Maria Shriver’s Women’s Conference, Chopra’s Intent.com and Denver’s GreatIdeasForKids.com.