Social media has revamped the Internet through its ability to not only build influence, but also humanize a brand or individual. This counts as much in a content sharing environment as it does to the ability to impact online reputations. What’s more is that publishing to social networks is both simple and cheap. However, as great as social media outlets are there is also a battleground mentality present for people who are targeted by negative content. No matter how this information is published—a blog post, article, press release— it affects success.
Understanding how social media factors into reputation management is key. Remember, social networks are a veritable arsenal for the savvy user. They are free tools that will give you the ammunition you need to fight back against any negative post that may surface on the Internet. But in order to make it work, you have to know the tricks used by online reputation management pros. Read on to discover some winning strategies that produce positive results.
1. Picking the Right Social Media Platforms
You don’t have to be Mark Zuckerberg to understand that some social networks are more powerful than others, which impacts rankings. For this reason, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest are the best platforms. From there, you might want to check out Crunchbase and Quora. Neither is currently the “cool kid” amongst their social networking peers, but both rank well and allow for the profiling of tech companies and professionals as well as the posting of questions and answers, respectively.
2. Up the Ante on Your Social Media Activity
So you have to do more than simply create the account. Social media is about user engagement and content creation; you have to stay active if you want the account to work for you. Google ranks compelling, updated content higher than stagnant material. For this reason, a Facebook profile that has daily activity will rank higher than one that has been long forgotten. But it can’t just be all about hyper-promotional content either. Finding a good balance between sharing information, education and inspiration also assists in driving traffic and creating great backlinks, which serves to strengthen existing, positive assets.
3. Use Keywords Wisely
It’s a foregone conclusion that search engine optimization is an essential part of using social media to improve one’s online image, but recent Google updates have also impacted this, namely in the world of keywords. A few rules of thumb: Use the keyword in the page name or in the Twitter handle for best results. Additionally, planting the keyword in static content on a page or profile works best, i.e. look to the “about” section on a Facebook page.
Let’s face it, social media is about much more than just sharing pictures of your dog. When considered as a whole, social networks are a fantastic tool in online reputation management. By using these tactics, negative information can be suppressed and positive information will be promoted, which will assist in controlling the brand image that you want the public to see and remember.
Rich Gorman is a pioneer in the online Direct Response (DR) marketing industry and a serial entrepreneur who has built several successful internet based companies. He is also the managing partner at Reputation Changer.