Five ways to increase your online reputation

Guest Author: Brent Swisher, owner of The Web Counts, a company specializing in online reputation and personal websites.
Website: The Web Counts

Online reputation, whether you have been searching for a job for a while, or are just entering the job market, it’s probably something you have heard about.  But how can you increase your online reputation?  What are some easy steps you can take to start developing it?  Here are five easy ways to get started:

  1. Launch a Personal Website
    A personal website serves as your base of operations; it’s the hub that links all of your online activity together.  Whether it is a blog, an online portfolio, or something in between, it should become the definitive place to get information about you.
  2. Link all of your Accounts
    Make sure that all of your online accounts are linked to each other.  Include links to your personal website from LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and whatever other sites you are using.  Use your personal website as a hub with links to all of them.  Search engines love links, and ensuring your sites interlink is a great way to help boost their rank in search results.
  3. Be Consistent
    Help employers by making sure that all of your sites look like they belong together.  If possible, use the same username for each network you are on.  Try to use the same profile picture across multiple networks.  Develop both a tagline, and a short biography that you can use at several sites.  Feel free to customize the biography, it doesn’t have to be a word for word copy, but try to bring across the same points at all the sites.
  4. Update Your Info
    Be sure that all of your information is up to date on all the networks you are on.  The info section you completed two years ago probably isn’t accurate any more.  Try to revisit biography and about pages at least once a year.  This is also a great time to update links and profile pictures.
  5. Be Active
    Creating a great online reputation can be summed up in two words: Do Something.  Provide meaningful content or commentary.  Comment on blogs and news articles you find interesting.  Write guest posts for websites and blogs, look for opportunities to appear in local news. Don’t be afraid to promote yourself when the opportunity arises.

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