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Egosurfing and Your Online Presence
Egosurfing means searching the Internet for your name to see what information comes up. The best way to do this is to conduct such a search at google.com (The act has become so frequent that there is even a term of this “googling yourself”). Google may be the most popular, but it's not the only one and each search engine ranks listings differently, so checking out Bing and alternative search engines is also a way to review any listings Google may be ignoring for now but could creep up later.
Generally, there are a couple of possibilities you might learn about your online presence which you should work on if you want to be seen in a favourable light. One is that nothing comes up about you and the other is that negative info comes up.
In both of those instances, it could shed a poor light on you as employers or people wanting to business with you are constantly looking for information you don't provide them with directly. Curating your online profile is important if you want to ensure that data on you is positive and paints you in a good light.
So, in this article, we will focus on how to build your online presence.
How to enhance your online presence
If nothing comes up, it is time to embark upon a web presence campaign. A simple way to begin is with twitter.com, which is a mini-blogging platform. It can be called a mini-blog because users are limited to posting messages of only 140 characters in length at a time.
For career advancement purposes, remember to post tweets that reveal your specialised knowledge and skills, and that showcase your personality.
Keep in mind; Twitter is a double-edged sword. The downside of Twitters high-frequency information trading and antagonising culture is that it is effortless to send off messages in the moment or sarcastic one-liners that do not always demonstrate the best you have to offer.
The upside is that with minimal, but consistent, effort you can build a web presence, your professional online profile, and begin a fruitful dialogue with others to gather like-minded people from the same field around.
Another easy way to get started is to create a LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn is a crucial professional networking website. Recruiters and human resources professionals are getting quite accustomed to checking LinkedIn to find talent and to vet individual applicants before beginning an in-person dialogue.
LinkedIn also offers a question and answer area, that is a great place to network and show your interests and deep level of knowledge. Also, creating a LinkedIn profile will be somewhat familiar to many new users because it resembles a resume format.
How to work with the negative information about you?
The other possibility when you begin egosurfing is that negative information comes up within the first three pages or so of search results of Google. In this case, you have a couple of options. One is to contact the source of the negative information and ask for that information to be removed. The answer may be “no,” but it doesn’t hurt to ask.
Beyond that, it is time to get to work on creating more favourable footprints on the Internet so that the negative gets pushed back on search results beyond the fifth page or so. To do that, get busy creating new profiles and presentations of yourself online.
After Twitter and LinkedIn, it's time to go beyond
Then move beyond to additional social networking sites such as Facebook or Instagram. Remember, keep those presentations professional because you want positive stuff coming up about you on the first few pages of search results for your name.
A superb way to quickly bury negative search results is to create a blog or vlog. This can be your website with yourself as a writer, or you can create an account on a free platform like medium.com. Another solution is to publish your vlogs on Youtube or podcasts on the relevant websites.
So, you see that egosurfing is a simple yet powerful tool on the way to build your online presence. The article has presented some useful tips on how to manage a zero-presence case or even a negative image of you on the Internet.
About the author
Nancy Kelly is a marketing manager and a content creator at Self-Starters, a website about online education and building your career.
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