Is Your Personal Brand Affecting Your Company Brand? (Part 1)

November 9, 2011

(Part 1 of 2)

There are many reasons for businesses to embrace social media – to increase sales, customer service, branding, and reputation management, to name just a few. This is a service that is very important to us at Hivehouse Digital. We regularly work with businesses to brand themselves – whether through blogging, social media, website design, etc.But how often do you think about the personal brands of yourself and employees? In this case, when we say personal brand, we are talking about a merging of two concepts – branding and reputation management. For many of us, branding isn’t something that we think about in terms of individuals, unless we are applying for a job. However, in today’s world, everyone should spend a little time monitoring their personal brand.

So, why you should care about your brand?

  • 91% of employers search for applicants on social media sites
  • Some business sectors are seeing over 60% of their leads coming from LinkedIn alone
  • College admission offices search for student applicants on social media
  • Your next date could be checking you out online

Plan your budget to
achieve your branding goals

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Now, are you ready to find out where you stand?

Start by doing an Internet search for your name. You should make it a practice to do this once a month. Make sure to search your first name and last name with quotes, and without quotes. For example:

Search 1: John Doe

Search 2: “John Doe”

You may also want to search for your name in conjunction with your location, or business.

“John Doe+Acme Company”

John Doe+Acme Company

Pro tip: Consider setting up a Google Alert with these parameters. The emails will be sent directly to your email inbox, and you won’t have to try to remember to do the search each month.

If you have a very common name, or share the name of a celebrity, consider it a mixed blessing. While you will likely never show up in the top search results for anything great that you do, it is less likely that you will show up if something negative is written about you. For those of us who have unique names, it is very important to be aware of what is being written about us.

Now, look through the first couple pages of results. You may find that your name is mentioned in a news article, on a petition you signed 5 years ago, or you may find nothing at all. The important thing to remember is that you want to know what is there, the good and the bad, so that you can react accordingly. If you see something negative about you, it will be very difficult to remove it from the search results. But what you can do is create more links that are positive and try to push negative listings down the search results page where it is less likely to be seen when a search is done of your name.

Next week: So, how do I create positive links?

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