Everything you do or say these days has the potential to end up on the Internet. The world of George Orwell’s book 1984 is far more of a reality than any of us care to admit. However, it is possible to control the way we are seen on the internet, at least to some extent, through online reputation management (ORM). This involves monitoring what is said or seen about a person, brand or company on the web, encouraging the visibility of positive information, and suppressing any negatives.
Monitoring Your Online Reputation.

Basic internet reputation management begins with careful monitoring of all mentions on the internet. This means keeping careful track of search engine results for key terms like your name, address, company name or brand name. Anywhere that your name could show up is a place that needs to be monitored, not just Google. Remember that there are all the social networks and other search engines that can turn up different results.

The Basics of Building a Good Reputation Online

As you go about building your reputation online, there are three basic keys to remember:
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  • Regularly post positive content. You need to make sure that the information you want the world to see is the content most visible on the internet. Regularly publishing your own content in a variety of places increases your visibility online and lets people know who you are and what values or messages you represent.
  • Keep your private information private. The best defense against any future problems online is to keep private information hidden from public eyes. Either don’t post that type of information online in the first place, or check your privacy settings everywhere to make sure you are limiting who can see your details.
  • Deal quickly with any negative information. If you do find that there is something inappropriate, nasty or unflattering about you out on the web, you’ll have to counteract it quickly. Don’t let a piece of negative content get entrenched in people’s minds or, even worse, go viral online.

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Basics of Dealing with Negative Information

It is probably inevitable that something about you will show up somewhere at some time that you don’t want anyone to see. Even if it is nothing particularly earth shattering, you may want to get rid of it or hide it from the world. Your main options will be to try to delete it or to push it down in the search engine results. By dominating the results with positive content, people are far less likely to see that one item that might embarrass you or cause the wrong impression.