Did you ever think that you would need to think seriously about something like your own reputation, let alone how to manage it online? According to a Pew Internet study on Reputation Management and Social Media, “Search engines and social media sites play a central role in building one’s reputation online.” The study also covers how activities tied to maintaining an online identity have grown importance.
Reputation has always been extremely important to individuals and brands alike because they help aid in the selection process of one business versus another. People and companies that are viewed as honest, fair and knowledgeable will encounter much more positive interactions than those with a negative reputation or no reputation at all. In fact, a Huffington Post article talks not only about the importance of your online reputation, but how “Your Business Reputation Is Personal, But Not Private.” People want to do business with others that they know and trust, not big, faceless corporations. This is where you have a distinct advantage as a solo entrepreneur!
Nowadays, it is easier than ever to learn about someone with just a few clicks of a button! Google states that names are searched over a billion times EVERY DAY. Whether someone is thinking about hiring someone, using their services or just starting to take an interest in a small business online, it has become standard practice to type their name into Google and see what comes up.
What people find when they search for you online will directly correlate to their perception of you as a trusted expert in the field of your chosen niche market. With a positive reputation, you will build more lasting relationships, have more people accept your recommendations and convert more leads into sales.
This is good news for you because it is relatively easy to manage your reputation online in the search engines and on your social networks! Unlike search terms in your business’s specific field that can be highly competitive, a search for your name, when coupled by your company name or an industry term, will almost assuredly show you right near the top of the search results. Why are these kinds of searches common? Because most people’s names are commonly found among the population, so we have been trained to put in something additional to our search phrases to appropriately filter the results. When people are searching for you, they may use an additional word or two (company name or industry terms) to complete their search.
If you want to start your own home-based business as a solo entrepreneur and plan on using social media to market the company, remember that your name is synonymous with your brand. Once someone has searched for you online, they are likely to find your blog, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter pages and more. They key is to manage your reputation so what they find fills the top page of the search engine with everything that you want people to know about you!
So what goes into building a positive reputation as a credible brand and a trusted expert online?
This is where the message that your blog and social media strategies deliver comes into play. This is where your brand is a beacon for your target market niche in terms of the all-important question, “what’s in it for me?” And then how you correspond with both loyal customers and new prospects will continue to mold your reputation throughout the relationship.
According to attentiv.com, 1 in 4 of us socialize more online than we do in person. As we get farther and farther into the digital age, online reputations, brands and your shared content become more important with each passing day!
If you would like help with creating your new home-based business, brand, reputation or overall social media strategy, then please CLICK HERE now to contact us today!