If part of your success in the business world depends on your brand and image, then it’s very important that you take care of that image and do all you can to keep it from getting tarnished. In today’s modern society, it’s easier than ever for one mistake or misstep to stick with you for the rest of your life thanks to the limitless memory of the Internet. So to help ensure that you don’t have the spend the rest of your career battling against a negative brand, here are three tips for protecting your professional image online.
Balance Personality With Professionalism
For many people, their image and reputation online is just as important, if not more important, than who they actually are in their real life. But if these two personas are drastically different, it can be hard to feel like you’re being genuine, which is often picked up on by those within your network. So to help you find the right balance of your personality with your online professionalism, Lauren Brousell, a contributor to CIO.com, recommends that you do about an 80-20 mix, with your professional side taking up the 80 percent and your personal side taking up the other 20 percent. This means that your online image should primarily be from a professional standpoint with you occasionally sprinkling in things from your personal life so that the true you can still be recognizable.
Be Very Careful With What You Say Or Post
For both your personal and professional online posts, it’s very important that you think carefully about the things that you post and how they could affect you on a professional level. We’ve all heard stories about people who’ve had posts or tweets resurface from years before that show them in a negative light or have called into questions values or opinions. So to safeguard yourself from this, Kevin Mulligan, a contributor to Cash Money Life, recommends that you never say anything online that you wouldn’t be comfortable defending on national TV, as this could very well be the case for you at some point. And because things can easily be taken out of context online, it often takes extra thinking time before you actually post or submit something to ensure you’ve covered all your bases.
If You Can, Try To Remove Negative Content
If, for whatever reason, you do find something posted about you online that casts your reputation in a negative light, Nathan Chandler, a contributor to How Stuff Works, advises that you do what you can to get that content removed. If it’s a review of your product or service, there’s really not much you can do to remove that. But if someone’s just bad-mouthing you or your career, try to address the problem and get it dealt with so you don’t have to continue fighting that same battle every time someone finds that thread.
If you’re concerned about how to best maintain your online reputation, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you do just that.